MLB Picks: Three Under Picks To Cash In This Sunday

Sunday, April 17, 2016 10:00 AM GMT

This will be the first Sunday where every team will play in the early going if weather cooperates. It didn't last Sunday with two games postponed. Here are the top totals picks for the day on MLB odds.

Seattle Mariners At New York Yankees
I have a feeling many baseball fans in Japan will be staying up late or getting up in the middle of the night Monday their time (around 2 a.m.) to watch this matchup. That's because former Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles teammates from the Japanese Professional Baseball Pacific League face off for the first time in Major League Baseball in Seattle's Hisashi Iwakuma and New York's Masahiro Tanaka.

The two pitched for that club from 2007-11 and would become the first former teammates in Japan to pitch against each other in the major leagues. They were set to square off in June 2014 in Seattle, but Tanaka's start got pushed back because of a rainout the day before. Japanese starters have met 11 times in the majors, last in June 2013. It's a shame these guys aren't in the National League so they could bat against one another.

The 35-year-old Iwakuma (0-1, 4.09) has pitched against Texas twice this season, allowing five earned runs and 14 hits over 11 innings, striking out 12. He’s 2-2 with a 3.50 ERA in five career starts against the Yankees. He faced them once last season, at Yankee Stadium, and gave up two runs and five hits in 5 2/3 innings.

Brian McCann is 2-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs off him. Alex Rodriguez is 0-for-3 with three strikeouts. The 27-year-old Tanaka (0-0, 3.38) has allowed two earned runs in each of his first two starts but has yet to last six full innings. He was 2-0 with a 2.57 ERA last year vs. the Mariners. Kyle Seager is 3-for-9 with two homers off him career. It is 5-1 in Iwakuma's past six vs. the AL East. It is 5-2 in Tanaka's past seven overall, so we'll make the Under one of our MLB Picks.

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MLB Free Pick:  Mariners Under 7½ +100
Best Line Offered: at Bovada

 

New York Mets At Cleveland Indians
This is the only interleague series of the weekend, so again remember that the Mets add the designated hitter. The way New York has been hitting, it could use an extra bat or three. It's two very good pitchers who haven't pitched like it yet. Lefty Steven Matz, one of those promising young arms on the Mets, goes for New York. He was destroyed in his season debut Monday against the Marlins, allowing seven runs and six hits in just 1.2 innings.

After a pair of walks to lead off the second inning, Matz gave up four singles and a Giancarlo Stanton home run before he was yanked. Matz has never faced the Indians -- he has made just seven big-league starts. It's 2014 Cy Young winner Corey Kluber (0-2, 4.11) for Cleveland. He allowed three runs and four hits over 7.2 innings last time out but lost at Tampa Bay.

The Indians have scored only three runs for Kluber in his two starts this season. Dating to 2015, the right-hander has gotten three or fewer runs of support in nine straight and 28 of 34 outings. He has never faced the Mets. Yoenis Cespedes has seen him, going 4-for-12 with a homer and three RBIs. Asdrubal Cabrera is 1-for-5 with an RBI. It's 4-1 in Kluber's past five overall and 6-2 in his past eight interleague starts.

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MLB Free Pick:  Mets Under 7½ -105
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

San Francisco Giants At Los Angeles Dodgers
This is the ESPN Sunday night game. It will truly be a banner Monday in Japan because another of its terrific pitching exports goes here in the Dodgers' Kenta Maeda. He pitched with Hiroshima from 2008-2015 in the JPCL. This first pitch would be around 9 a.m. Monday in Japan.

Maeda was much less heralded than Tanaka was, but Maeda hasn't allowed a run in two starts, going six innings and allowing five hits against both San Diego and Arizona. He has struck out eight and walked one. Maeda is the 16th pitcher since 1913 to have his first two big league starts each go at least six innings and not allow a run. He's the first Dodger to do it since Karl Spooner in 1954. Those were Spooner's only two starts of the year for Brooklyn. He played just one more season before injuries ended his promising career. 

The Giants go with Jeff Samardzija (1-0, 3.38). He was just OK in  his Giants debut but then quite good last time out, holding the Rockies to two runs and six hits over eight innings at Coors Field. He threw 111 pitches, 72 of them strikes. Chase Utley has faced Samardzija more than any Dodgers player, going 6-for-15 with three doubles, a triple, a homer and five RBIs. Yasiel Puig is 2-for-3 with a walk. It is 13-5 in the Giants' past 18 vs. a right-hander. It's 10-4 in the Dodgers' past 14 vs. a righty. Let's take a look at their MLB Odds:

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MLB Free Pick:  Giants Under 7 +100 
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker