After getting rained out of our bets the previous two days, we finally got a bet in last night! I wish it would have rained! We backed the Minnesota Twins at home as slight favorites against the Boston Red Sox. I felt like we were getting the best of the starting pitching matchup as Eduardo Rodriguez had been awful on the road this season, and Kyle Gibson had been nearly unhittable at home. So, I backed the team with the best record in the majors and figured we were on the right side of things.
And I got a couple of things right as Eduardo Rodriguez got lit up early and often as he allowed four runs in the games first four innings. The problem for us was that Kyle Gibson was even worse as he got tagged for six runs in just four and a third innings of work. The game was back and forth early on, but eventually, the Boston bats poured it on late and ended up running away with this game 9-4.
With the win, the Red Sox managed to steal the series, two games to one. They have now won seven out of their last eight games but continue to trail the New York Yankees by six and a half games in the AL East race. The Red Sox will take today off as they head home to begin a long homestand.
For the Twins, this was just their second series loss of the month, and they still have the best record in the American League. The Twins have now lost three out of their last four games, but they head to Kansas City next for what should be a soft four-game series with the Royals. For today’s pick, we will head to Seattle where the Mariners host the Orioles.
The Baltimore Orioles are in Seattle Thursday for game one of a four-game series with the Orioles. Both of these teams are struggling badly at the moment. The Orioles find themselves losers of eight straight games and are just 3-14 in the month of June. Baltimore has the fewest wins of any team in the big leagues at just 21-53.
For Seattle, they started the season out red-hot but have fallen off of a cliff recently. The Mariners are in the midst of what should be an epic fire sale as they have already traded away Jay Bruce and Edwin Encarnacion, and more are expected to be shipped off before the trade deadline. The M’s did find a little bit of success in their last series though as they managed to take two out of three against the Kansas City Royals.
Starting tonight for the Mariners is Wade LeBlanc (3-2 6.20 ERA), and for the Orioles, it is Dylan Bundy (3-8 4.44 ERA). The game total over-under is set at nine runs. The Mariners are -140 home favorites. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM PST from T-Mobile Park in Seattle.
It hasn’t been all bad for Wade LeBlanc this season, but when he isn’t at his best, he is getting hammered. In his last start, he gave up six earned runs in just two and two-thirds of an inning against the Oakland Athletics. He had a similarly bad start in March when he got lit up for six runs in five and a third innings against the Boston Red Sox. In the month of May, he went 0-2 with an ERA of over ten runs.
He did have a couple of solid outings sprinkled in their as well as he had back to back starts in early June where he pitched a combined fourteen innings and allowed just three earned runs. One thing you can count on with LeBlanc on the mound is that the game will be high scoring. In seven of his nine starts, the game total has been at least twelve or more runs.
For some reason, I keep holding out hope that Dylan Bundy can get things figured out at the major league level and become an All-Star level pitcher. Bundy was the fourth overall pick in the loaded 2011 draft and was expected to be an ace at the big-league level. That draft featured fellow first-rounders like Gerrit Cole, Anthony Rendon, Francisco Lindo, Javier Baez, Jose Fernandez, and Sonny Gray.
But the results for Bundy just have not been there. This season he is just 3-8 with a 4.44 ERA. And all the Orioles do with him on the mound is lose as they have lost ten out of his last thirteen starts. This is now the fourth full season where Bundy has been a part of the Orioles regular rotation, and he has never posted an ERA under four runs, and he has been prone to giving up a lot of home runs. Bundy allowed a whopping forty-one homers last season and has allowed fifteen already this year in fourteen starts.
This is an ugly affair, and I suppose one of these teams have to win, right? If there were a way for both of these two teams to lose, I am sure they would find a way to make it happen. Neither of these teams are valuing wins very high right now as clearly, they are both out of contention and building towards the future. So, in a game where the teams don’t really care who wins, I can’t have a strong opinion on taking a side.
But I do have a strong opinion on the game total of nine runs. While the Orioles have a bad offense, just about everyone has been able to score on Wade LeBlanc this season. And when you look at the Seattle bullpen, they have the second highest ERA in the game. The O’s are going to find a way to put some runs on the board, that is a near certainty.
If Seattle has the second-worst bullpen in the game, who has the worst? You guessed it, the Baltimore Orioles. So, we have a game that has two starters that are both pitching poorly, and two bullpens that always get hammered, that all tells me that runs are going to be easy to come by tonight. The books have clearly adjusted this number down with the recent trades of Bruce and Encarnacion as this would have likely been ten runs a couple of weeks ago. But I don’t see either team struggling to score tonight. Give me the over nine runs tonight in game one from Seattle!