This is a huge day in the MLB as both American League Division Series are knotted at 2-2. Something has to give on this Wednesday as two teams move on and two teams go home.
Houston Astros vs. Kansas City Royals: Kansas City Was Left For Dead
Lance McCullers pitched a brilliant game, extending himself as far as possible and the Astros and their fans thought that they were moving on. They had a 6-2 lead off of two Carlos Correa home run and then came the 8th inning. The Royals were down to their last 6 outs and facing the Houston bullpen, they got hit after hit until they tied the game.
Fear entered the Astros minds as a thought of game 5 in K.C. didn’t look appealing and they basically gave the game away. Then came an awkward ground ball to Carlos Correa and he went from the hero of the series to the guy that committed the game losing error that gave Kansas City a 9-6 win.
The announcers kept mentioning Johnny Cueto as if he would be the savior in game 5, but let’s not forget, this is the pitcher that was brilliant in Cincinnati and a dud in Kansas City. He doesn’t give the Royals the edge, their hitting and overall momentum gives them the edge. Not only does Cueto carry a very unappealing double-figure loss record and above 4.00 ERA as a member of the Royals, he’s already lost a game in this series and has a 6.00 ERA. He’s really hurt the Royals. Imagine how good they would be if he pitched the way that he had pitched for his entire career? I always say that good pitching wins games and despite the power displayed by Colby Rasmus, Carlos Gomez, and Carlos Correa, I look for the experience and momentum of the Royals to win out in game 5 as the Astros already had their chance to win and gave it away.
MLB Pick: Kansas City Royals -122 at 5Dimes
Texas Rangers vs. Toronto Blue Jays: A Golden Opportunity
The Toronto Blue Jays have fought their way back from a 2-0 deficit with 2 wins in Texas. Now, the question is “Can the Blue Jays win game 5 and complete the comeback”.
R.A. Dickey left game 4 early and the Jays needed the help of ace, David Price. We won’t be seeing Price in this game as he expended a lot of energy and wasn’t in top form. This game comes down to the pitching of Marcus Stroman and more importantly, the hitting of the best offensive team in the league. The only catch is that they’ll have to face Cole Hamels, who can beat any team on any given day.
The Reason Why the Rangers Picked Up Hamels
Instead of wasting his arm in Philadelphia and pitching to a below 3.00 ERA and having a .500 record or worse, Cole Hamels wanted to go to a winner and now he has the chance to help the Texas Rangers, who are a decisive betting underdog to advance.
Although Hamels had a 13-8 record with a 3.65 ERA this season, this could’ve been expected as American League offenses are better with the designated hitter .
You will find that most of your best pitchers are in the National League. That aside, Hamels has held his own as he’s already beaten the Blue Jays in this series.
In game 2, Hamels allowed 2 runs in 7 innings as the Rangers defeated the Jays 6-4. This put Texas in a dominant position, but the tables have turned. Now, he will be playing at the Rogers Centre and facing the like of Donaldson, Bautista, and Encarnacion for all of the marbles and the Jays have their confidence back.
Remember, Toronto is a team that can run off 6 or more runs in an inning at the drop of a hat. I expect Hamels to pitch well, but Toronto is the better team and will complete the comeback whether they face Hamels or the Rangers bullpen.
MLB Pick: Toronto Blue Jays -159 at 5Dimes