Nationals/Braves Game 4
The curse has been broken. The Nationals finally stole one away from the Braves yesterday, winning 2-0 thanks to a wonderful start out of Jordan Zimmermann.
Zimmermann was unhittable, throwing eight innings of two-hit ball. He had eight strikeouts and didn’t walk a batter, with his ERA dropping to a miniscule 1.64 ERA in the 2-0 win for Washington. The winning runs came off the bat of Ian Desmond, who belted a two run homer in the fourth inning.
With the series now at 2-1 in favor of Atlanta, the Nationals have a chance to even the honors up. Unfortunately, Dan Haren has really struggled up until this point and is going against a top-notch pitcher in Kris Medlen. That's why we find the Braves as -170 favorites tonight.
Haren has gone 2-3 with a 6.29 ERA so far, but he has managed to pitch a little better over his last two appearances. As for Medlen, he's been in a little bit of a rut, but in two home starts this season he's recorded a 2.25 ERA.
Orioles/Angels Game 1
Willie Bee begins his series coverage of the Baltimore Orioles and LA Angels matchup, which kicks off tonight. The Angels are having some serious issues right now. They may have just scraped out a win to close out their series with Oakland, but they had lost four in a row prior to that and they're 2-6 over their last eight.
Maybe returning home will be just what the doctor ordered for L.A. Or maybe not. The Orioles have been playing solid ball all season long and have been successful on the road as well, going 9-6 so far.
The two pitchers for this series opener are Chris Tillman and Joe Blanton. Blanton has been truly awful to begin his debut season for the Angels, putting up a 0-4 record to go along with a 7.09 ERA and 2.10 WHIP.
Tillman hasn't been lights out, but his last two starts have to be encouraging for Orioles backers. He's given up only three earned runs over his last 12 and 2/3 innings of work, lowering his ERA from 7.07 to 4.73. Nonetheless, it's the Angels that get the favorites tag at -115.
Around the MLB
Jeff Grant is tracking the Red Sox/Blue Jays and White Sox/Rangers series.
Boston got an absolute gem out of Clay Buchholz in an easy 10-1 win yesterday. Winners of six of their last seven, the Red Sox will try to emerge as the series victors in game three this evening. Ryan Dempster will go against J.A. Happ, with the MLB odds listing Toronto as a +125 underdog.
The White Sox broke out of their slump with a 5-2 win last night and will try and make it two straight against Justin Grimm and the Rangers.
It doesn't matter that Jake Peavy is getting the call for Chicago – they're still the underdogs (+115) for this game. Why? Grimm has been a revelation for the Rangers in his second season in the bigs, going 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA through his first three starts.
Grimm has been lucky to go up against a couple of the weaker offensive teams in the MLB, so we'll really get a taste of how good the kid is when he faces a Texas team that's loaded with great hitters.
We will also have a pick on the Tigers/Astros game – featuring Rick Porcello and Jordan Lyles as the starters – and Joe Catalano will be dishing out two more free sports picks for the day's action.