I took another tough loss yesterday with the Giants tallying three runs in extra innings to down the heavily favored Dodgers and spoil another solid outing from Clayton Kershaw. Today starts a new week full of new series and new opportunities, and I am anxious to start a winning streak to erase the memory of last week.
There are a few excellent matchups starting today; we have the battle of playoff contenders Atlanta and San Francisco, two of the top teams in the National League, we have the Interlague Subway Series with the Mets and Yankees renewing their annual rivaly for Big Apple supremecy, and we have some big-time starting pitchers on the hill tonight including Felix Hernandez.
It should be a good week of big league baseball, and we will try to get back on track and make it a big week at the window as well. Let’s dive in!
Today’s free picks:
Chicago Cubs +146 at St. Louis Cardinals -154 (Total: 7.5)
Travis Wood (2-4, 4.75 ERA) vs. Tyler Lyons (0-2, 3.43 ERA)
The two teams are a combined 2-8 with tonight’s starting pitchers on the mound, though for Tyler Lyons’ case it feels a little unfair. He has been decent this season with a 3.43 ERA and his 1.05 WHIP is actually excellent and suggests better things could be coming for him in the near future. The Cardinals offense has dramatically failed to live up to their 2013 standards, and some of their starting pitchers, Lyons especially, have paid the price for the lack of offense.
Through roughly a quarter of the season, the Chicago offense has averaged 3.69 runs per game compared to the Cardinals 3.68. Yes, the difference is negligible, but if there would have been a prop bet on whether the Cubs would outscore the Cardinals, you would have made some good coin. Not that either is setting the world on fire by any stretch.
Wood has never failed particularly well against the Cardinals, going 2-3 with a 4.11 ERA since joining the team several years ago. That should help Lyons earn his first win of the season. He’s been good enough in three games to already have a win under his belt but the total of two runs scored on his behalf has hindered him. Look for the Cardinals to put a few on the board against Wood to give him some breathing room. I’ll take another double-up wager today; the Cards to win and I’ll grab a little extra value at +140 on the runline. I like this to be a 4-1, 5-1 type ballgame. A pitcher with a near 1.00 WHIP against a struggling lineup at home? I like it.