For today’s Pitcher Report we have identified starting pitchers coming off bad outings and our interest is to determine how they perform against the MLB odds and what we should for sports picks.
We want to make it clear, we are not talking about some Joe Schmoo’s here, these are hurlers in the midst of very good seasons, not used to poor showings and who desperately want to lead their teams to victories.
Indians vs. Royals: Young Looks to Lead Royals to Series Win
Kansas City at least for the moment ended their temporary slide in defeating Corey Kluber and Cleveland last night 4-2. That was just the Royals second win in eight tries and Chris Young (4-1, 1.55 ERA) will attempt to bounce back from his first loss of the season. The 36-year old right-hander had been fantastic and frankly a massive surprise to baseball handicappers. In his first four starts, Young allowed one earned run and 13 hits over 22 2/3 innings. Given up for dead some time ago, Young made 29 starts for Seattle last year and had a respectable 3.65 ERA and gave up 0.86 hits per inning working down in the zone with his fastball/sinker combination.
In his initial loss of the season to the Yankees, he was touched for four runs and seven hits (2 HR’s) over six innings. Young has a sensational 0.54 ERA at Kauffman Stadium in three starts, but his mound opponent Trevor Bauer (4-2, 2.97) has been razor sharp on the road with a 0.99 ERA in four road outings.
Sportsbooks have Kansas City and Young as -120 favorites which seems to be the right number for him since he is 9-1 at home when the money line is +125 to -125 the last two seasons. (Team's Record)
Slight Advantage – Young and Kansas City
Mets vs. Diamondbacks: Harvey Seeks Salvation among the Cactus
If you saw Matt Harvey (5-3, 3.11 ERA) on John Stewart’s show you could not help but be struck though he’s 26, he could have been 36 the way he happens to look. He’s made those backing him for MLB picks feel old with consecutive defeats. Harvey coming off Tommy John surgery has surrendered 11 runs and three homers in 12 innings over his past two starts.
After the first bad loss, manager Terry Collins declared New York was going to a six-man rotation to protect some his young arms like Harvey and rumors were floated he was suffering from a “dead arm”. Though the righty had a season-high 11 strikeouts in eight innings against Miami, he allowed four runs in the 4-3 setback.
Harvey said his arm is fine, but he needs to do a better job with his mechanics. The MLB betting odds show New York as -140 road favorites and they have won five in a row at Chase Field, averaging 6.8 runs game in the process and Arizona starter Jeremy Hellickson (3-3, 5.08) has a 6.58 ERA at home this season. While Harvey is a tempting choice for MLB picks at Wagerweb.ag, where they guarantee next day payouts, I cannot get over New York being 7-18 on the road and a miserable 3-14 after dark and will go against the Mets.
Disadvantage – Harvey and New York
Cardinals vs. Dodgers: Wacha and Cardinals in Revenge Mode
After St. Louis tasted victory in 11 consecutive Michael Wacha (7-1, 2.27) starts, the Cardinals finally felt what their opponents did in losing 5-1 to Los Angeles on Saturday. Wacha was actually cruising along, having not allowed a hit in 5 1/3 innings and then the wheels came off with three straight hits, the last a home run, followed by an out and a walk and suddenly he was done.
Wacha has the rare opportunity to play the revenge card immediately versus the same opponent and opposing pitcher – Carlos Frias (4-2, 4.29), this time on the road. Though St. Louis might have the best record in baseball, they are only 13-11 (+2.2 units) in away games. The Dodgers are 21-7 at home and could tie the Redbirds for best home record with a victory.
Not sure Frias can come through in a big way again and he has 7.63 ERA at Dodger Stadium which has me leaning towards Wacha and the Cards.
Slight Advantage – Wacha and St. Louis