Take Advantage Of Athletics' Hot Offense & Grab Them As Your MLB Pick vs. Rangers

LT Profits Sports Group

Tuesday, June 14, 2016 5:59 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2016 5:59 PM UTC

The A’s put up at least four runs three straight innings of a 14-5 win last night after scoring six runs the prior game, making them the MLB pick over Martin Perez and the Rangers.

MLB Record: 39-34-2, +7.66
The newly found offense of the home team could potentially tee off on an overachieving starter Tuesday night when the overrated Martin Perez and the Texas Rangers (39-25, 15-15 away) pay a visit to fellow southpaw Eric Surkamp and the Oakland Athletics (27-36, 14-16 home) in the second game of a four-game series from the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, CA at 10:05 ET in a game available on Comcast SportsNet - California.

The posted money line at Bovada has Oakland as a small home favorite for this contest at current MLB odds of -115.


Rangers Still in First Place
Oakland had been the losing MLB pick in seven straight games before the offense broke out in a 6-1 road win over the Reds in Cincinnati in interleague play on Sunday, and then the Athletics kept their hitting shoes on last night in a 14-5 romp in this series opener here at home while pounding out 17 hits! The A’s still trail the first place Rangers by 11½ games in the American League West though while in fourth place.

Despite the licking the Rangers absorbed last night, they still maintained a 4½-game lead over the second place Seattle Mariners, a lead that the Rangers extended a bit by taking two out of three games head-to-head in Seattle this past weekend. In fact, Texas has been the best team to bet on in baseball this season sitting atop the Major League Money Line Standings at +20.43 units, more than double the units won by the San Francisco Giants in second at +10.08 units.


Very Weak Peripherals for Perez
With that being said, we do not like the Rangers in this spot as their starter Perez looks like a prime fade for us for the immediate future. That is because while Perez has a seemingly good enough 3.22 ERA and has now posted four consecutive Quality Starts, his peripheral numbers and much worse than his surface stats, which is a clear indication of pending regression.

And it is not as if Perez is weak in just one sabremetric area either as he basically looks weak across the board with a poor strikeout rate of 4.94 strikeouts per nine innings vs. an equally poor 4.14 walks per nine, and he has been aided by an low .264 BABIP allowed and a high 78.3 percent strand rate. When you shake all of that out, it leaves Perez with a 4.47 FIP and a 4.77 xFIP that are each less than flattering, especially relative to his ERA.

Perez has also had his problems with the A’s over the years going 3-5 with a 5.81 ERA and1.52 WHIP in nine career starts against them while allowing Oakland batters to hit .301, and he now must deal with an Athletics’ lineup that last night became the first Major League team in five years to score at least four runs in three consecutive innings!


Good Run Support Should Help Surkamp
Now, do not get us wrong as we are not high on Surkamp either and he could use all the run support that he can get. Thus, this is more of a play against Perez at a reasonable price until the oddsmakers catch up to how much he has overachieved with his surface numbers. Besides, it would be smart for Oakland Manager Bob Melvin to keep Surkamp on a short leash as the A’s bullpen is on a nice roll of late with a cumulative 2.61 ERA and 1.03 WHIP the last 10 games.

The Athletics may also be getting a break with Adrian Beltre expected to miss his fifth straight game with a strained hamstring, as reports have Texas targeting the series finale on Thursday as his possible return. The Rangers especially miss Beltre’s presence vs. southpaws, as he is batting .317 with a .885 OPS vs. left-handed pitchers this season, compared to a .253 average and .748 OPS vs. right-handers.


Tough Time Piecing Quality Starts Together
Finally, the Rangers are just 4-11 in Perez’s last 15 starts following a Quality Start in his last appearance, as well as 1-5 in his last six road starts. The Athletics are 4-0 in the last four head-to-head meetings overall, 6-0 in their last six home games and 4-0 in their last four games vs. left-handed starters.

Expect those trends to continue here, as while we readily concede that Surkamp is nothing special, we like Oakland to give him ample run support by teeing off on the overachieving Perez to give the A’s a second straight home win over Texas in this series on Tuesday.

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Free MLB Pick: Athletics -115
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

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