You win some and you lose some. Such is life in sports, especially baseball, and such is life in wagering. But I gotta admit, yesterday I lost in a statistical anomalous way I never had before. I was on the UNDER in the Marlins and Giants matchup, a reasonable stance given the Jose Fernandez vs. Johnny Cueto sub-three ERA starting pitching matchup. We clearly lost that wager in the marathon 8-7 fourteen-inning affair. But it is the FIRST time I have ever had an UNDER wager where one PLAYER had more hits in the game than the run total. Brandon Crawford notched an insane seven hits in the contest; the first time that had been done in decades and decades. The run total was 6.5.
Weird game. Cool day for Crawford. And a less-than-fun loss for me.
Let’s get up of the deck today with a nice packed slate of games to choose from.
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Today’s Free Pick:
Arizona Diamondbacks +122 at New York Mets -132 (Total: 7)
Zack Greinke vs. Steven Matz
It is a sign of a new year in baseball when Zack Greinke is a decided underdog against Steven Matz. But such is the case tonight in Queens with the somewhat struggling Mets host the absolutely cratering Diamondbacks. The year has been an abject disaster in Arizona, who had aspirations of contending with the offseason signing of Greinke, but are instead grateful for the Atlanta Braves likely providing enough cushion for them to avoid having the worst record in baseball.
But is isn’t all Greinke’s fault. Yes, the season got off to a dreadful start, but he was MUCH better in May and June – nearly the Greinke of old. Almost every start was a quality one, most of them with zero of just a single run allowed.
And then, of course, he got hurt.
Greinke returns tonight, and expect the kid gloves to be in full effect. There is no reason to jeopardize their prize investment in August of a lost season. I’m looking for four or five innings, probably decent ones, and then a quick hook. That means a lot of bullpen innings for a beleaguered staff and a huge edge for the Mets and Matz.
Look for New York to get Matz just enough late support to earn him the win. Minus 132 is a pretty fair price considering the likely limited pitch count and bullpen taxing Greinke’s quick hook will cause. I like the Mets to win at home at a fair price.