It is time to move ahead to Saturday and investigate the run line possibilities from the sportsbooks MLB odds and see if we can have the same kind of success as yesterday in taking home some cash.
Because of FOX having the evening baseball telecasts, all three of our choices will be in the 4:00 EDT timeframe so make sure to get your MLB picks in early before heading out tonight.
Keystone State Confrontation – Part 2
Amazingly the Phillies and Pirates had to go 13 innings to break a scoreless tie last evening with home-standing Pittsburgh winning 1-0. The teams combined for 24 hits, thus they had chances, yet could never quite put anything together. Philadelphia could be in for another low-scoring contest taking on the Pirates Gerrit Cole (9-2, 1.73 ERA) who owns the lowest ERA in baseball. The Bucs ace has won his past four starts and scoring on him has been close to impossible with 0.61 ERA.
Pittsburgh has only tallied four runs in their last four games to be 2-2 but chances are they could bust loose for more facing Sean O'Sullivan (1-4, 4.96), who over his past four outings has a 6.17 ERA.
Cole is able to get opposing hitters out with his two and four-seam fastballs which have outstanding late movement, a hard tilted slider and straight change that sinks late. Pittsburgh is a large money line favorite, but Heritage had the best run line price I initially found at -125 (-1.5) on the Bucs and when Cole starts as a favorite, they are 21-6 since last year, winning by 1.7 runs a game. Dress up Cole after a Pirates victory and you can see why for sports picks Pittsburgh is a fine choice at 12-1, winning by 2 RPG.
Pelfrey Gives Minnesota a Run Line Shot
I like many baseball handicappers keep waiting for Mike Pelfrey (5-2, 2.28 ERA) to fall apart. But the Minnesota starter keeps delivering fine performances and has a wicked 0.96 ERA in his last four starts. The Twins as you know are slumping at 1-6, with the offense stone cold at 2.0 RPG and the only time they have won in this stretch is when Pelfrey was on the mound. This season, Minnesota is 8-3 when the 6’7 right-hander takes the ball, winning by a run a contest.
Texas ended their brief two-game skid with a 6-2 victory over the Twins and is 9-4 in their last 13 battles. Colby Lewis (5-3, 4.42 ERA) gets the call for the Rangers and his 3.21 ERA in his last two starts is a better than the 19 earned runs he allowed in 14 1/3 innings in his three prior starts. But is Lewis and Texas really a safe bet? With this a mid-afternoon affair in Arlington, Lewis has an 8.47 ERA is day games and his team lost all three outings. In addition, right-hander is 0-4 with a 7.43 ERA in seven starts against Minnesota.
Given the track record of both pitchers and the Twins 11-1 on the RL after four straight games where they stranded seven or less runners on base this season, I’m not afraid of the -175 MLB odds to pick up +1.5 runs.
Follow the Archer, Chris that is of Tampa Bay
The Rays' Chris Archer (7-4, 1.84) is no longer considered just a good young pitcher, he’s thought of as one of the finest in the American League. Archer is second in the AL in ERA and strikeouts (108), tied for second in opposing team’s batting average (.196) and tied for the lead in WHIP (0.95). And if that wasn’t good enough in his past six starts he's 4-0 with a 1.09 ERA, with a 14.5-to-1 K/W ratio.
Betting Tampa Bay on the run line as a favorite is iffy because of the offense averages 3.7 RPG, nevertheless, Chicago’s Jeff Samardzija (4-4, 4.93) certainly fits in the same iffy category. The Sox righty has an ERA of 6.00 on the road this year and he’s 6-16 in away games since last season, losing by 1.7 RPG.
With Chicago’s offense also meager a 3.7 RPG and having a 5-17 RL record versus teams averaging 2.75 or less extra base hits per game and losing by 1.7 RPG, I’ll take Tampa Bay at +140 (-1.5) on the run line this afternoon.