Pick Rangers To Pull Ahead On Good Pitching Match-Up vs. Blue Jays

Charles Stark

Thursday, May 5, 2016 11:25 AM GMT

Blue Jays take on Rangers in what should be a good pitching matchup between Derek Holland and J.A. Happ. MLB Odds have Toronto as a solid favorite but is there value on backing the Texas?

Texas Rangers vs. Toronto Blue Jays

MLB odds makers have made Texas a +142 underdog like at BetOnline. For one of my MLB picks I will back Texas in this spot because they are a good value on a good pitcher and a Texas team that is playing good baseball so far this season. Although Happ for Toronto has started out the season very well, Texas is good enough to get to him and score a few runs.

 

Texas Rangers
Derek Holland takes the mound for the Rangers and comes in with a 2.48 ERA and 1.03 whip. His career numbers are not great with a 4.22 ERA and 1.31 whip, however he has struggled with some injuries and is a solid major league pitcher. In his last three seasons on the road he has a 3.30 ERA and batters are hitting just .244 against him. As well, he is facing a Toronto team that so far this season is hitting left-handers worse than right-handers batting just .218 which ranks second to last in the American League.

Up and down the lineup this is a good Texas team batting .254 on the season in averaging 4.26 runs per game which ranks in the middle of major league baseball. They also rank in the middle in most offensive categories like OPS and hits per game, but they don't strike out very much ranking sixth in the major leagues in strikeouts per game. Against left-handers themselves they have been one of the best in the American League leading the league with a .278 batting average and ranking fifth with an .735 OPS.

 

Toronto Blue Jays
J.A. Happ takes the mound and has been stellar so far with a 2.76 ERA and 1.22 whip but the Blue Jays are only hitting .230 as a team which ranks 26th in the major leagues. Like Holland, Happ's career numbers are much different than what he's done so far this season with a 4.09 ERA and 1.36 whip but he did pitch well against Texas last season allowing just three earned runs in 13 innings pitched. He is a good veteran pitcher that has been solid so far this season but is starting to show signs of getting back to his career ERA as both Oakland and Tampa Bay got to him a bit garnering six runs in 13 innings in his last two starts.

Offensively Toronto simply has not been close to how they were last season and rank from the middle to the bottom of the league in most offensive categories. They still hit their share of home runs ranking 11th in the league in long balls per game, however they rank 19th, 26th, and 18th in runs per game, hits per game, and slugging percentage respectively. With how they have hit lefties, as mentioned, so far this season I believe this puts a lot of value on taking a shot with the Rangers today to pull off the minor upset.

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Free MLB Pick: Texas Rangers
Best Line Offered: at Heritage