MLB Picks: Thursday Baseball Betting Guide

Joe Catalano

Thursday, March 21, 2013 3:20 PM GMT

Thursday, Mar. 21, 2013 3:20 PM GMT

We turn our attention away from the hardcourts for a bit, as we scour over today's odds boards looking for any MLB betting value. Let's see if we can find some fair value with our picks we take a look at two of this evenings matchups.

Phillies vs. Red Sox

Cole Hamels takes the mound and he's picked up right where he left off last season.

Thus far in spring training, Hamels has been nearly unhittable as he carries a 2-0 record with a 0.90 ERA. Hamels has shown pinpoint control in giving up just 1 walk in 10 innings. Opposing hitters are hitting just .167 off of the left hander. Philly is traveling to Ft. Myers, and the fact that the MLB odds are calling them the underdogs in this game with Hamels on the mound is major value in itself.

A Win is a Win?

Facing Hamels will be veteran John Lackey (2-0, 8.10). Lackey has gotten wacked around fairly hard but has still managed to come up on the winning end. Lackey has given up 6 runs in just 6 2/3 innings while opponents have been hitting a sound .320 off of him.

This could be a field day for star Ryan Howard. After having a disappointing 2012 due to injuries, Howard and the Phillies look to re-establish supremacy in the National League East. Thus far in spring training, Philadelphia has to be encouraged as their slugger is hitting .317 with 5 HR and 14 RBI. Howard is 3 for 8 with 3 runs scored and 1 home run in his last 2 games.

Cole Hamels hasn't given any reason for us baseball bettors to think that he won't pitch well here. He's hitting his prime and this can be another huge season for Hamels. Take the Phils as the underdog in what should be a low scoring game.

MLB Pick - Phillies +110

[gameodds]3/222214/43/us[/gameodds]

Washington (11-11) at Atlanta (15-11)

Dan Haren has to be a happy man that this is just spring training. He's off to an awful start since joining the Nationals from the Los Angeles Angels. Haren is winless in 4 starts with an 0-3 record and an ERA of 5.79. WIth the Gio Gonzalez controversey in the off-season, the Nationals need a veteran like Haren that they can count on.

Haren will be opposed by veteran Tim Hudson. Hudson has always excelled in spring training, but has had a rather rough 2013 in his first 5 starts.

Opposing teams have had their way with Hudson as he's managed to give up 10 runs and 20 hits in 15 innings in the month of March and has struck out just 4 batters. I wouldn't be too worried about Hudson; he's managed to deliver for the Braves for almost a decade now, but this would be a red flag when making your sports betting picks for today's 6:05 pm ET affair.

Sophomore Superstar?

If spring training is any indication of the regular season, Bryce Harper is going to be the next Mike Trout at just 20 years of age. Harper has been on fire thus far in 2013 with 3 HR, 12 RBI and a red hot .400 BA.

Although Atlanta managed 18 runs yesterday against Pittsburgh, today is another day and Hudson has been far from impressive. Take the Nats as a slight dog.

MLB Pick - Washington +105 at 5 Dimes

[gameodds]3/222212/43/us[/gameodds]
comment here