Blue Jays right-hander R.A. Dickey (7-8, 4.72 ERA) is slated to face Tigers lefty Jose Alvarez (1-1, 3.78 ERA), while both clubs come in from losing weekends.
Tigers, Jays try to regroup
Sunday’s action saw Toronto and Detroit end their respective series’ with defeats, logging losses in Boston and Tampa Bay.
Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista cracked a late homer as part of a 3-for-5 day at Fenway Park, tying his squad’s contest, 4-4. Toronto’s Josh Thole logged the game’s sole error in the bottom of the ninth, allowing Red Sox shortstop Jonathan Diaz to cross the plate for a walkoff win.
Detroit came away with a second straight loss in a 3-1 setback against the Rays, failing to collect as a 114 underdog. Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera poked a long ball for his club’s only run, while mates Austin Jackson and Torii Hunter were held to a 1-for-8 day, each leaving four men on base.
Dickey sharp in shutout
Dickey notched his third win in five starts with Wednesday’s 3-0 victory for Toronto as an even-money road dog against Tampa Bay. The 38-year-old stood in for the duel’s full nine innings (93 pitches), holding the Rays to two hits.
Toronto’s Edwin Encarnacion and Adam Lind both drilled homers, uniting to finish 2-for-8. The matchup’s three runs plunged below the ‘total’ of 8 ½, moving the UNDER to 3-2 in Dickey’s last five outings.
Alvarez outgunned at home
Alvarez picked up his first loss on the same day’s card, with Detroit’s 7-4 defeat to the Los Angeles Angels. The rookie allowed four runs on seven hits, failing to collect as a 146 home favorite.
Tigers first baseman Prince Fielder poked a double as part of a 2-for-4 night, while Detroit edged out the Angels in hits, 12-10. The slugfest’s combined 11 runs leaped above the ‘total’ of 10, dropping the UNDER to 2-1 in Alvarez’ three MLB starts.
Back the Tigers as road dogs
Bet365 opened Dickey as a 130 home favorite, with the MLB odds shifting to minus 150 after early ‘steam’ on Toronto. The ‘total’ was first set at nine, rising north to 9 ½ following initial OVER wagers.
I am backing Alvarez and Detroit as part of Monday’s sports picks, looking for an afternoon bankroll boost at a plus price.
Dickey has had his share of inconsistency, giving up 12 earned runs over his last pair of home starts (12 2/3 IP). The veteran has allowed a sizable 1.40 WHIP and .326 OBP at Rogers Centre, while Toronto is 2-5 in its last seven spots as a favorite of minus 150 or less.
Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera has a homer and double in a 5-for-15 career mark facing Dickey, while Torii Hunter and Omar Infante have hit a combined 19-for-40. The Tigers are 5-1 in their last six games that came after a spot of scoring two runs or less, while going 9-4 in their last 13 contests that followed a loss.
Alvarez has shown some promise for Detroit and should settle down further here in his first road spot. Look for the Venezuela native to hold the fort down just enough, adding another cashed ticket to Detroit’s 7-3 mark in its last 10 road games against clubs with losing records.
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MLB Picks: Detroit Tigers +135 at Bet365