Oakland A’s (-1 ½ R, -110) Over Texas Rangers for MLB Picks

Joe Gavazzi

Monday, September 15, 2014 4:38 PM GMT

Monday, Sep. 15, 2014 4:38 PM GMT

We look to the run line with our MLB picks in tonight's matchup between the Rangers and the Athletics. Find out why we believe that the betting trends point to this outcome.

Texas Rangers (Tepesch) at Oakland A’s (Kazmir) (-1 ½ R, -110) 10:05 ET
With last night’s 8-1 LAA victory, I am on a 5-0 run with my MLB picks.  The last 4 of those victories have come by a combined count of 32-8, good for +19% of bankroll profit.  This is an example of how profitable “Fall Ball” has been for my bureau in recent seasons.  The money you win on MLB games spends just as well as your football victories.  With no football action on Tuesday, there is every reason for you to be in action with this Tuesday night baseball winner.

Now that MLB has expanded to 5 playoff teams in each league, the Wild Card races have become far more exciting.  Little more than a month ago, one could have hardly considered that Oakland would be involved in such a race.  The A’s stood 72-44 with the best record in MLB.  Then, the bottom fell out!  Since that time, Oakland has gone 11-22.  But with the Saturday/Sunday sweep of Seattle, it appears they have changed their momentum.  Those consecutive victories were the first time in 3 weeks that Oakland had won back-to-back games.  I consider it a major buy signal.  With 6 home games this week against bottom feeders, Texas and Philadelphia, it is time for the A’s to make their playoff push. 

A look at the current Wild Card standings shows us that Oakland is currently tied with KC for the Wild Card lead.  Seattle remains 2 games back with Toronto, Cleveland and NYY in the distance.  Considering that only LAA is playing better than .600 baseball, is it any surprise that Oakland experienced a dip? 

Texas enters with what may appear to some to be late season momentum, following their home sweep this weekend of Atlanta.  Those weak hitting Braves, however, are a team in disarray that has dropped to .500 with limited Wild Card hopes.  Now, the Rangers, who continue to have the worst record in MLB at 57-92, must line up against a tougher division foe.  Texas is recently just 7-28 vs. AL West rivals.  Though Texas does enter on a 3-game winning streak, note that is was preceded by a 1-11 slide, including 5 consecutive road losses. 

The pitching matchup is clearly in our favor.  The Rangers have lost 4 consecutive starts by Tepesch.  In those 22 IP, Tepesch has allowed 15 runs on 28 hits with a disturbing 6/8 inverted KBB.  Tepesch has been clobbered by the Oakland bats with a 7.11 ERA, 1.53 WHIP and .291 BAA.  Following a group of sub-par performances, Kazmir pitched a return to form outing in his previous start.  In 8 IP, Kazmir allowed just 1 run on 4 hits.  Yet, the 1-0 loss to CWS will leave him hungry.  Clearly, Kazmir has done his best work from this mound.  In 14 starts, spanning 92 1/3 IP, Kazmir has a 3.02 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, and .226 BAA.  Finally, Kazmir has already defeated Texas twice this year.

MLB teams win their home games by 2 or more runs 66% of the time.  Thus, it is a nice built-in run line advantage when we note that 33/45 Oakland home wins (73%) have come by 2 or more runs.  Feel comfortable laying the runs in this contest, as Oakland continues their return to form and sends a message to the worst team in MLB, a once feared divisional foe.

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