MLB Picks: Royals Ready To Take Advantage Of Twins Rough Start

Jason Lake

Sunday, April 10, 2016 11:26 AM UTC

Sunday, Apr. 10, 2016 11:26 AM UTC

The Minnesota Twins have already dropped five units against the MLB odds. Playing the Kansas City Royals this Sunday afternoon probably won't help Minnesota's cause much.

This could be a very long season for the Minnesota Twins. They're off to a 0-5 start this year, digging themselves a five-unit hole in the process. Then again, the Twins went 1-6 last year before finishing 20.29 units in the black at 83-79. It's too early to stick a fork in these guys just yet.

Not that Minnesota's very likely to win Sunday's matinee (2:15 p.m. ET) against your World Series Champions, the Kansas City Royals. The 3-1 Royals (+2.07 units) have already taken the first two games of this three-game set at Kauffman Stadium, and they're –155 favorites on the MLB odds boards for the finale. That might be a bargain, too, judging by this pitching matchup.


Hey Ricky
Twirling for the Royals: Edinson Volquez (3.82 FIP last year), who's off to a rolling start this year after beating the New York Mets (–116 away) 4-3 on Opening Day. Volquez kept New York scoreless over six innings, allowing just two hits and three walks while striking out five. Very nass. Current Twins have combined for an anemic .551 career OPS off Volquez, and that includes 1B Joe Mauer (5-for-16, 1 HR, .875 OPS), who just doesn't have it anymore.

Minnesota sends Ricky Nolasco (4.30 FIP in 2014) to the hill on Sunday. Does he have it anymore? Maybe not; Nolasco's value has plummeted since he came over from the National League, partly because of elbow and ankle injuries, and partly because of designated hitters. Nolasco will be making his 2016 debut against a Royals team with a combined .747 lifetime OPS against the veteran northpaw, and that includes back-up catcher Tony Cruz (0-for-10, 0 HR, .000 OPS). We assume Salvador Perez (5-for-17, 1 HR, .882 OPS) will be behind the plate this time.

As if the Twins didn't have enough to worry about, CF Danny Santana (.532 OPS last year) strained his right hamstring during Saturday's 7-0 loss to Kansas City (–125), and was immediately put on the 15-day DL. Okay, maybe that's a blessing in disguise for Minnesota, especially with Santana's 2-for-9 career record against Volquez. That's two singles, with zero walks and four strikeouts. We're still disinclined to put the Twins in our MLB picks, though.


Fantasy Corner
Does your fantasy league scoring system include holds? See if you can buy low on Royals RP Joakim Soria (3.71 FIP last year). He's had his ups and downs since his first tour of duty with Kansas City, which can happen after Tommy John surgery. Soria's off to a rough 2016, coughing up four earned runs in 2.2 innings of work, but that's a teeny-tiny sample size. Scoop him up while he's still available at 61.6 percent of ESPN leagues. Mmmmm... scoop... Sunday... Royals. We'll buy that for a dollar.

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Free MLB Pick: Kansas City –148
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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