We Pick the Run Line as Dodgers-Rangers ML Offers Little Betting Value

Darin Zank

Thursday, June 18, 2015 3:40 PM UTC

Thursday, Jun. 18, 2015 3:40 PM UTC

The Dodgers send Zack Greinke to the mound Thursday night in an attempt to avoid getting swept by Texas. This handicapper likes LA  today, but hates that price, so what's his MLB pick?

Rangers-Dodgers Thursday Betting Odds
Los Angeles and Zack Greinke opened as huge favorites over Texas and fellow righty Anthony Ranaudo, and the line was climbing through the morning. As of this writing the best price we could find on the Dodgers was the -237 offered at BetOnline, while Heritage was giving the Rangers +227.


The Situation
Texas has taken the first three games of this four-game, two-city series, after beating Clay Kershaw Wednesday night as +250 underdogs 5-3. The Rangers are now 5-1 over their last six games, 20-7 over their last 27 games. At 36-30 overall Texas has pulled to within 2.5 games of first-place Houston in the AL West, and leads the AL wild-card race.

Los Angeles (37-29), meanwhile, even after losing four of its last five games, still leads the NL West by 2.5 games over second-place San Francisco.


Thursday's Starters
Greinke (5-2, 1.95) is 10/13 on quality starts this season, and seven for his last eight. Last Saturday he held San Diego to two runs through eight innings, and just before that he held St. Louis to one run through 6 2/3 innings. On the season Greinke has allowed just 68 hits through 87 2/3 innings, with 17 walks and 75 strikeouts; Los Angeles is 8-5 in Greinke's starts, with the OVERS going 8-5.

This will be Greinke's first start against Texas since 2012, when he was with the Angels.

Ranaudo (0-1, 32.40) will be making his second start of this season for Texas; back in April he got bombed for six runs in less than two innings against the Angels, then got sent back down to Triple-A Round Rock. But he earned a return call to the Big Club by going 7-1 with a 2.45 ERA for the Express.

Last year, as a rookie pitching for Boston, Ranaudo went 4-3 with a 4.81 ERA.

This will be Ranaudo's first-ever start against the Dodgers, which could help him, at least for the first couple of times through the lineup.

Browse the futures odds trading for the MLB World Series

Thursday's Batting Splits
Los Angeles leads the Majors against right-handed pitching this season with a .340 team OBP, while Texas ranks seventh against righties with a .326 team OBP.


Injury Update
The Rangers are still playing without both Adrian Beltre and Josh Hamilton, but that hasn't seemed to bother them too much.


Rangers-Dodgers Free Picks
We came up with a very profitable MLB pick on Texas against Kershaw Wednesday, but we know when not to push our luck. LA hasn't lost consecutive Kershaw-Greinke starts yet this season, and probably won't this time, either. But today's price is too damn high, so we'll take a chance with the Dodgers on the run line. Also, games played at Chavez Ravine this season are 23-12 on the OVERS, but our guess is that trend will start leaning back toward normal before too long.

MLB Picks: Los Angeles +102 on the run line at Pinnacle and UNDER 7.5 runs (-105) at 5Dimes

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