Triple Play: Jays' Happ to Stop Rangers; Mariners Mash vs. Indians

Mark Lathrop

Sunday, April 29, 2018 2:26 PM UTC

Sunday, Apr. 29, 2018 2:26 PM UTC

Our MLB handicapper, Mark Lathrop, comes off of a successful Saturday and looks to keep adding units as he picks out three top-value picks for your Sunday betting card.

2018 MLB Record: 32-24-4, +7.79

MLB Sunday: Triple PlayTexas Rangers (11-17 SU) vs. Toronto Blue Jays (14-12 SU)Free MLB Pick: Blue Jays -1.5 RLBest Line Offered: 5Dimes

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The Texas Rangers go for the sweep of the Blue Jays today in Toronto after winning both of the first two games as outright underdogs. Unfortunately for them, they have a terrible matchup for their starting pitcher, Martin Perez. The left-hander pitches better against southpaws and struggles against righties on the season and in his career. Perez allows just a .237 BAA against lefties lifetime, while right-handers are hitting a robust .294 against him in his career and .427 against him in 2018. Toronto has 3 switch-hitters in its expected lineup and can bring 8 batters to the plate on any given day from the right-handed side.

The Blue Jays will attempt to stop the bleeding with J.A. Happ, who has been very good against this particular Rangers lineup and is having a great start to his season overall. His strikeout rates are up (12.72 K/9), his walk rates are down (2.17 BB/9), and he is carrying a 2.73 xFIP into today’s game. Happ relies heavily on his fastball, located well up and in the zone. His repertoire should find success here as only Shin-Soo Choo and Robinson Chirinos of the Ranger lineup hits the fastball rather well. I’ll back Happ here to stop the Blue Jay’s losing streak in emphatic fashion, and take Toronto -1.5 on the run line at home as one of my Sunday MLB picks.

Seattle Mariners (15-11 SU) vs. Cleveland Indians (14-11 SU)Free MLB Picks: Mariners ML +100, Mariners TT 'Over' 4.5 +110Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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Another favorable matchup plays out for the Mariners today, as they draw the struggling Josh Tomlin of the Indians in the final game of their series. Tomlin is positively broken, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he hits the DL after this start. He comes in with a 29.6% HR/FB rate, a walk rate nearly triple his career average at 2.84 BB/9, and a 11.47 FIP. Even if Tomlin was pitching well his repertoire matches up badly with the lineup expected for Seattle. Tomlin throws a cutter and curve more than half of the time, two pitches that the majority of the Mariners lineup absolutely crushes according to RotoGrinders. He will have to have his sinker going for him to have any kind of a chance here, a pitch he throws about 10% of the time and not very well. Seattle doesn’t hit sinkers very well.

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Crushed. 😗 pic.twitter.com/hgNK1L2tzx

— Mariners (@Mariners) April 29, 2018
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Tomlin will go up against local Gonzaga product, Marco Gonzales. Even though his ERA is 5.56 he has pitched well this season and put up a 2.61 FIP. That’s an elite number, suggesting serious positive regression is in store for Gonzales. He’s tough on left-handers and will need to pitch around some of the bigger right-handed bats in the Indians lineup for him to have success, such as Edwin Encarnacion. But at even money I will back a 2.61 FIP against an 11.47 FIP any day of the week, so I will be taking the Mariners on the moneyline in this MLB pick. I will also add Seattle’s team total "over" 4.5 at +110 on the MLB odds board in what should be a successful day for them at the plate against Tomlin.

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