MLB Picks of The Day: Swinger’s Top Plays for Early Saturday's Action

Swinging Johnson

Saturday, April 11, 2015 11:51 AM GMT

Saturday, Apr. 11, 2015 11:51 AM GMT

Swinger looks to Saturday's MLB odds to find the best betting value on the board and pick out a pair of winners in his MLB picks to cash big time and bust his bookmaker .

MLB Season Record (6-5, +0.70 units)
There is very little that one might deem profound in the world of sports gambling. You're far more likely to find profound in a Shakespearean sonnet or in the works of F. Scott Fitzgerald, author of the Great Gatsby, who I read somewhere was acclaimed as the most important author of the twentieth century. But I am here to tell you I haven't read Shakespeare since my senior year in high school and as far as F. Scott Fitzgerald is concerned I saw the movie...forgot I had even read the book.

With that I will tell you that I am inherently a chalk leaner (as opposed to eater) which leads me to my favorite axiom in all of sports gambling - there is no value in losing. Therefore, when I lay -160 in MLB odds on a road favorite like Washington that is starting a solid pitcher in Gio Gonzalez who enjoyed a successful spring against a journeyman in Jerome Williams who couldn't find the strike zone during the exhibition season starting for what should be a lousy team like Philadelphia, I am a-okay with it. But a funny thing happened. Williams pitched his ass off and Gonzalez went cold in the seventh inning leading to a 4-1 Nationals defeat. It stung to be sure and so did, but to a lesser degree, the 'over' 7 ½ (+105) MLB odds total in the Royals/Angels tilt that combined for only six runs.

I have learned over the years to be much more judicious in laying the lumber and have yielded far better results when looking for value in an underdog. But that doesn't mean the age-old axiom doesn't apply every now and again. Unfortunately for me last night I was reminded that there is no value in laying -160 on the road with a team that has yet to find their hitting stride.

Someone once said, “A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.” After last night I am sure I have plenty of bricks with which to start building. Let's go!

 

Cardinals (1-2) vs. Reds (4-0)
If it is indeed true that pitching wins ballgames then this one is easy. Me loves me some Johnny Cueto. The Reds are 4-0 to start the season after winning the first of a three-game set last night over the Cardinals 5-4. Now they have Jumpin' Johnny on the hill who pitched seven scoreless innings over the Pirates in their season opener. The Reds have yet to take to the highway this season instead getting their first six at the Great American Ball Park and the home cookin' has been tasty.

The Cards will trot out Michael Wacha who will take the mound for the first time this season. Wacha dominated in the Grapefruit league during spring training amassing a 1-0 record with a stellar 1.77 ERA in five starts. As appealing as that sounds the games count for real and I will remind myself that this is a pitcher who returned after three months on the DL last season with a stress reaction in his right shoulder only to register a 5.40 ERA in his four post-DL starts.

 

Here are a few betting trends to consider
The Cardinals are 0-4 in their last four during Game 2 of a series.
The Reds are 5-0 in their last five versus the NL Central dating back to last season.
The Reds are 21-8 in Cueto's last 29 starts.
The Reds are 4-1 in Cueto's last five home starts versus the Cardinals.

MLB Pick: Reds -125 at Pinnacle Sports

Play & Win with Saturday's Finest Totals MLB Picks

Twins (1-3) vs. White Sox (0-4)
My first impression of any game involving the Twins is either stay away or fade them. Yes, they are an organization that has been bereft of success for over five years but doesn't it seem like winning has eluded them since the days of Kirby Puckett? Anyway, the Twins are off to another magical start- three losses in four games - but they did pop their cherr...er, win last night for the first time this season when they bashed their way to a 6-0 victory over the winless White Sox (please don't call them the Pale Hose). 

So here's the thing boys and girls. You have two pitchers in Mike Pelfrey and Jeff Samardzija that should by all accounts get lit up. Pelfrey was 0-3 with a career high 7.99 ERA as well as a 1.99 WHIP last season and was slated for the bullpen until starter Ervin Santana was suspended for 80 games. Pelfrey is also 0-3 with a 6.66 ERA in his career against the White Sox which makes him almost impossible to bet. However, Samardzija is 0-1 with a 7.50 ERA in his only appearance this season and is 1-1 with a 9.31 ERA in his career against the Twins.

I know, the over looks like it would be the way to go with our MLB pick but these are two offenses that I don't trust for a minute. I am looking at this game and wondering why Samardzija and his band of winless White Sox are so heavily favored and in my zeal to find value, I think I just did.

MLB Pick: Twins +160 at Bovada

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