Under 7.5 Runs is MLB Pick for Tigers vs. Pirates Today

Ross Benjamin

Monday, August 11, 2014 12:54 PM GMT

Monday, Aug. 11, 2014 12:54 PM GMT

How will the Tigers respond after playing a marathon extra inning game in Toronto on Sunday? Will the Pirates role players produce in order to overcompensate for some of their key players that are out? Read out sports betting article which is concluded with a MLB free pick.

Inter-league Series between Top Playoff Contenders
The Pirates will host the Tigers today at PNC Park in Pittsburgh with the first pitch slated for 7:05 PM ET. According to MLB betting odds the Tigers are a -120 money line road favorite and the total is 7.5. The Tigers have excelled in inter-league play this season going 9-4 and earning +4.20 MLB betting units in doing so. These teams have met in each of the last 3-seasons with Pittsburgh winning 6 of the 10-games, and 8 of the 10 went under the total.

 

The Starters
The Tigers will go with veteran Jason Verlander on the hill. Describing Verlander’s season as being inconsistent would be a vast understatement. There are times he’s looked like his old dominating self, and on many occasions the Tigers hurler was just awful. He does enter tonight in good form over his past 3-starts posting a stellar 2.45 ERA and 1.01 WHIP. The Tigers have gone under the total in their last 5-games when Verlander was their starter. Verlander has gone 4-0 in his career versus Pittsburgh with an excellent 1.97 ERA and a 0.81 WHIP.

The Pirates will counter with southpaw Jeff Locke. He enters tonight in shaky form over his last 3-starts posting a large 6.16 ERA, a 1.58 WHIP, and allowed a whopping 6 home runs in 19.0 innings. Locke has been solid at home going 5-2 against the money with a 3.42 ERA, a 0.93 WHIP, and just shy of a 5:1 strikeout to walk ratio.

 

Tigers off a Marathon on Sunday
The first obstacle the Tigers must face this evening will be fatigue. At the time of this writing they were still playing in the bottom of the 17th at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, and the game just eclipsed the 6-hour mark. Detroit seemed to have the game well in hand with a 5-0 lead, and red-hot David Price on the mound. Price left the game after 6.0 innings of work, and needless to say the Tigers bullpen will be taxed entering today’s series opener versus the Pirates. The Tigers entered Sunday’s game having lost 3 of their last 4, and their lead in the AL Central had been trimmed to 1.5 games by the red-hot Kansas City Royals. Tonight will mark the 8th of a 9-game in 9-day road trip for the Tigers. Detroit has actually fared better on the road (33-24) than at home (30-27) in 2014.

 

Pirates Need to Regain the Momentum
The Pirates enter this series having dropped their previous 2-games at the hands of the San Diego Padres. Despite those losses both coming at home, the Pirates have gone a superb 37-24 (.607) at home this season. This will be the 7th of an 8-game in 8-day home stand for the Pirates. Their bats were considerably cooled off in the 3-game series versus the Padres, as they scored a grand total of just 5-runs. Pittsburgh continues to be without their best player Andrew McCutchen who is sidelined indefinitely with a fractured rib. They will also likely to be without Neal Walker who’s been hampered by a bad back. Those 2-players alone have combined for 33 home runs and 117 RBI’s this season.

 

Final Analysis
This is a tough one to gauge. Detroit hasn’t exactly been tearing the cover off the ball over the last 10-days or so, and as alluded to earlier, they’ll be coming off an elongated affair on Sunday at Toronto. The Pirates will be without some key hitters in the middle of their lineup, and despite Jeff Locke’s struggles of late he’s been very good at home this season. Jason Verlander looks like he may finally be rounding into the form that we’ve been accustomed to, and he’s dominated the Pirates in all 3-starts against them since 2012. Solely based on my professional intuition, and utilizing my years of experience in witnessing similar types of MLB betting scenarios like this one, I’m going to call for this one to go under the total.

Free MLB Pick: Tigers/Pirates to go under the run total of 7.5 at BetOnline sportbook

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