MLB Picks: Variety Explains AL West Totals Scene

Doug Upstone

Thursday, May 14, 2015 11:58 PM GMT

In studying the numbers for totals versus sportsbooks betting odds in the AL West, most are close to what would be presumed. Team talent and ballparks are close to what you would presume.

Oakland is the only real difference-maker and we will excavate why they are performing in the manner they are along with breaking down the rest of the division and determine what to do about MLB picks on totals going ahead.

 

Mariners and Angels Efforts Mirroring Parks
Seattle and Los Angeles both call home to pitchers ballparks as MLB baseball handicappers will acknowledge. Safeco Field has the more dense evening air in Seattle and the usual prevailing winds blow in with varying degree. The Big A in Anaheim has a similar situation without the wind, as the marine layer most nights adds a density to the air, making long balls more challenging.

Both these clubs are 17-15 UNDER, though the Mariners are more difficult to comprehend for sports picks.

After being the top offense in the big leagues a year ago, the Angels are having a devil of the time scoring at 3.7 runs per game. Beyond Mike Trout and Kole Calhoun, the rest of the Halos contributions are sporadic. The other factor for low numbers versus the betting odds is opposing teams are only ringing up 3.6 runs per contest on Angels pitchers.

Seattle thought their offense would be improved by adding Nelson Cruz and it should be with his major-league leading 15 home runs and .346 batting average. What nobody anticipated was Cruz would be the M’s only offensive weapon, as Robinson Cano and a host of others have been non-factors.

To the credit of MLB odds makers like those from GTBets, they picked up early that the Seattle starting pitching beyond Felix Hernandez while talented, is unproven and the entire staff is surrendering a whopping one more run a game compared to last year (4.4 vs. 3.4), a 29.4 percent increase.

 

Performance Dictates Astros and Rangers Records
First place Houston is 18-15 UNDER and it has been the pitching staff which has led to this alteration. Last season the Astros conceded 4.5 RPG, in 2015, an incredible turnaround to 3.9. It has been a complete restoration like the show – Fixer Upper – on HGTV, going from 12th to second in earned run average. Houston is 12-5 UNDER at Juice (Minute Maid) Park.

In spite of key injuries to starting pitchers, for now, Texas is holding the line fairly well at 4.5 RPG, but the lack of offense beyond Prince Fielder is holding back the offense at 4.1. The makes the Rangers a 17-15 OVER play and though oddsmakers will adjust, we expect the Texas’ total to start going up like the heat and humidity in Dallas.

 

Oakland Best Totals Play in the Game
What is it about the Athletics? Last season for most of the year they were far and away the best team in baseball for run differential and even though they failed miserably the last 25 percent of the season, they still led baseball in this category.

This year, with a more potent offense than expected and an extremely suspect bullpen which could be arrested for stealing paychecks, Oakland is a head-shaking 23-9 OVER. In spite of or because of the A’s are a mere 5-11 at home but are every totals player’s best friend with a sensational 14-2 OVER record. Gulp.

This extends beyond just that point with a 19-6 OVER mark at as a favorite and 18-6 OVER after dark. Oakland might be headed to a really crummy season, but who cares if you bet totals!