MLB Picks: Runs Come Cheap At Red Sox vs. Blue Jays

Mark Lathrop

Sunday, May 29, 2016 11:00 AM GMT

Sunday, May. 29, 2016 11:00 AM GMT

Our hot MLB handicapper checks out the Sunday card and finds two well known pitchers that are still trying to figure it out in 2016. Read on as he breaks down the game and makes his MLB Pick!

Another easy win for my last pick as San Diego absolutely hammered the Diamondbacks on Thursday night as an underdog to continue my 11-3 ATS stretch. Here I’m taking an early look at the matchup Sunday afternoon between the Boston Red Sox (29-20) at the Toronto Blue Jays (26-25) in this AL East clash. The visiting Red Sox have been listed as a -133 favorite on the MLB Odds moneyline, while the O/U total has opened at 9 across the board.

Also a quick shout out and congrats to newly promoted Master Sergeant Kevin Wulf of the United States Air Force. You make one hell of a brisket and it will fuel me in making this MLB pick (not to mention put me into a food coma very soon).

 

The Price is Wrong
David Price starts this game for the Red Sox, and the big free agent acquisition for Boston has disappointed thus far. Price has exhibited a severe drop in velocity this season, averaging just 92.3 MPH on his fastball versus last year’s average of 94.2 MPH. Although not a direct cause, this drop in velocity has yielded terrible results for Price and he has posted a 5.34 ERA and 1.22 WHIP, both worse than any season he has put up since 2009.

Although his peripheral statistics suggest that Price is getting a bit unlucky with his ERA – he has a fielding independent pitching ERA of 2.81 – there are some concerns with the contact that he is allowing with men on base. Basically, Price is missing in the zone and getting hit hard. His hard hit rates are actually about 25% higher than his career high before this season. When a pitcher loses velocity he can either make an adjustment, or on the other hand, try to do the same thing with 2 MPH less on his pitch and get absolutely punished.


R.A. Dickey Balls Out
Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey starts for the Blue Jays in this game and is also sporting the worst ERA of his career since 2009 at 4.60. All of the advanced stats point to very similar pitching styles and results for Dickey this year as he has compiled a 2-6 record so far. What is different this year is that pitchers are laying off of Dickey’s pitches outside the strike zone more than ever. Last year batters swung at 31.2% of pitches that would have been called balls – this year that has dropped to a paltry 23.9%. It really hasn’t led to more walks, but it has led to more batters putting the ball in play and getting on base. Dickey’s batting average allowed this season of .257 is his highest since 2009.

 

Trends and Pick
Coming into this game, the Boston Red Sox offense has exhibited some strong offensive trends and have cashed 5 Overs in a row. On the season, they are also 23-14 O-U against right-handed starters before Sunday’s start, averaging 5.7 runs per game. The Over is also 8-1 in starts by David Price for the Red Sox in his early season troubles.

Since both starters are having their issues, I don’t trust either with a wager on the side. However, offensive trends suggest that backing the Over here has the most value in this game, and I’m not scared off by the relatively 9 run hurdle we have to clear. I’m shopping for a line and taking Over 9 runs as one of my MLB Picks

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Free MLBPick:  Over 9 +110
Best Line Offered: at YouWager
2016 YTD MLB: 19-9-1, +9.84 Units

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