MLB Picks: SBR's Pitching Report Looks to go 8-1

John Ryan

Thursday, May 8, 2014 12:53 PM GMT

SBR continues a winning streak reinforcing our MLB picks for Thursday's MLB matchups. With a current record of 8-1, this expert handicapper looks to further increase our bankroll by analyzing Friday's MLB pitching matchups D-backs vs. White Sox & Marlins vs. Padres.

The winning streaks continue with two more winners added to the profit and loss ledger. The Seattle Mariners needed extra innings, but won 6-4 installed as -121 favorites. Then the Toronto Blue Jays put a solid beating on the Phillies 10-0 with Mark Buerhle moving to 6-1 on the year. He allowed just three hits over 7 innings of work and lowered his ERA to a paltry 1.91 for the season. So, I'm now 8-1 making 7.50 units/unit wagered for the season with these 5 Star Titan releases.

Phillies' starter Cliff Lee looked quite flustered after his center fielder failed to run down a long fly ball that should have been caught at the MLB level of play. He then surprisingly lost focus and gave up some bombs and several hard hit line drives before being removed from the game. I believe this rare event is just not an isolated sign from Lee, but rather a possible hint that the Phillies are not a team with good chemistry on or off the field. Keep that in mind when looking to add them to your MLB Bets in the weeks ahead.  

Yesterday, I outlined a play on the Philadelphia Phillies boxed with Burnett for the Thursday card. If any other starter was on the hill for the Phillies, I would decay this play and advise you to not play the game. However, Burnett has been the ONLY consistent starter on this team. Moreover, teams that are shutout by 10 or more runs do have a strong propensity to bounce back the next day, especially when it is the same opponent. So, I will validate the play on Philadelphia today.

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The Friday Pitching Report Card 
Looking at the Friday card, I like the Marlins with Fernandez on the hill visiting the San Diego Padres. As of Thursday morning, the Marlins have won eight of ten games and find themselves tied for the NL East Division lead with the Washington Nationals. I certainly do not see this recent streak as a fluke and I believe the Marlins will be a contender in this Division. Marlins rank 6th in MLB in runs scored, third in Batting average, fifth in on-base-percentage and sixth in slugging percentage.  

One of the dominant reasons for the Marlins' success has been the brilliant pitching of Jose Fernandez, who has posted a 4-1 mark with a 1.74 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, walking 12 batters while striking out an amazing 65 batters in seven starts spanning 46 2/3 innings of work. In his last start he struck out 10 batters and gave up three runs (two earned) in Sunday's 5-4 win over the Dodgers. He gave up five hits and walked four over seven frames of work.  

Fernandez will be going against arguably the weakest offensive team in MLB. The Padres rank 30th in runs scored, 30th in team batting average, 30 in on-base-percentage, and 30th in slugging percentage. In 35 games played they have managed to score just 91 runs. So, you can now see the vast differences between these two teams and why I like the Marlins as a 5 Star Titan play.  

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In my second play for Friday, I will back the Diamondbacks boxed with Brandon McCarthy. You may remember I played him in his last start and it paid off handsomely. McCarthy finally got in the win column Saturday, tossing seven scoreless innings while only allowing three hits and a single walk in a gem against the Padres. Granted, it was against the Padres, but he has pitched quite well over his last two starts after a very tough start to his season. 

McCarthy has recorded 40 strikeouts on the season, putting him in a three-way tie for ninth in the NL. Unfortunately, he is the only pitcher in the top 15 with just one win, thanks to a combination of a struggling D-Backs offense and a couple of rough showings. Most notably his second and third starts, where he allowed a combined 17 hits and 12 earned runs.  

[gameodds]3/263664/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]