MLB Picks: Underdog Rangers Won't Let White Sox Invade The Lone Star State

Swinging Johnson

Tuesday, May 10, 2016 12:59 PM GMT

The White Sox have invaded the Lone Star State as the hottest team in the American League and now own the junior circuit’s best record. Let’s review the MLB odds with an eye towards cashing a ticket.

2016 MLB record (18-10, +7.57 units)

Chicago White Sox vs. Texas Rangers

Chicago White Sox (23-10, +14.1 units)
Those who have included the White Sox in their MLB picks this season have had to do little more than sit back and collect their money as the South Siders have proven to be a veritable ATM up to this point with +14.1 units to the good. They have now won their last four and sit atop the AL Central with a whopping six game lead on the second place Indians. Surprisingly the team is in the middle third in terms of offensive categories as they are tied for 12th in runs scored, 13th in batting average, 11th in on base percentage and 19th in slugging percentage. However, the team’s pitching has been stellar with the third best team ERA (2.79) in all of baseball.

Last night the White Sox kept their winning streak alive with an 8-4 victory over the Rangers in the first game of a three game set. Todd Frazier slugged his second homer of the game in the top of the 12th inning and the grand slam sealed the deal for the streaking Sox. Tonight they will hand the ball to Carlos Rodon (1-4, 4.36) who took the loss in his last outing when he worked six innings of six hit, three run ball in the team’s 5-2 defeat to Boston. Rodon did not factor in the decision the last time he faced Texas which was on April 23rd where he pitched six plus innings allowing just two runs on two hits in a 4-3 Chicago victory.

Texas Rangers (18-15, +5.4 units)
The Rangers will try to shrug off last night’s 8-4 loss to the visiting White Sox when they knotted the game at four in the bottom of the ninth inning only to fall in the 12th courtesy of a grand slam by Chicago’s Todd Frazier. The loss snapped a modest three-game winning streak and the Rangers now trail the division leading Mariners by 1 ½ games. Texas has plated 147 runs on the season which is good for 8th in the bigs and a .255 team batting average which places them 11th in the league.

Tonight Derek Holland (3-2, 5.40) makes his first start since getting rocked by the Blue Jays in Toronto on Thursday night where he allowed 11 runs on 11 hits in just two plus innings in the 12-2 loss. In his last outing against the White Sox, Holland allowed three earned runs on five hits and took the loss in the 4-1 defeat back on April 24th in Chicago.  

 

Betting Analysis
Though the White Sox are 4-0 versus Texas this season it is in fact the Rangers who own a narrow 4-3 edge in games played in Texas over the past three seasons. Derek Holland had a 2.48 ERA entering his disastrous start in Toronto which ballooned to his present 5.40 after he was torched for 11 runs. Holland has already had two games where he allowed no runs and should be more than ready to shake off the one game funk that was strictly an aberration.

Chicago’s Carlos Rodon has accounted for four of the team’s 10 losses despite the fact that he has pitched effectively in his outings this season. Yet, the fact remains the Rangers have a talented lineup featuring 22-year-old Rougned Odor who has seven dingers on the season coupled with 21-year-old Nomar Mazara who leads the team with a .301 batting average. Elvis Andrus, Adrian Beltre, Ian Desmond and Prince Fielder add veteran stability and leadership into a team that could make noise as the season progresses.

As I review the MLB odds I am pleasantly surprised that the Rangers are home dogs here and have the venue as well as the starting pitcher to their advantage. Let’s grab the small number and play the home team here.

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Free MLB Pick: Texas Rangers +105
Best Line Offered: at Bovada