It is the second time in a week that a pitcher has taken a no-hitter into the seventh inning, only to leave the game and see his bullpen bring a gas can to the mound and blow up the magic. It wasn’t quite as dramatic for Brandon Finnegan, who at least surrendered a single before leaving the game as opposed to leaving with a no-hitter still intact, but with his escalating pitch count there was no doubt he was done one batter later regardless. It set the scene for the Reds second dramatic large bullpen loss of the season when Addison Russell electrified the frantic Cubs crowd and gave the North Siders something to celebrate in their home opener with a three-run game-winning homerun in the bottom of the eighth.
In earlier action, we notched a second straight winner as the Phillies and Padres stayed just under the runline in a 4-3 Padres victory. Let’s see if we can make it a trifecta today.
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Today’s Free Pick:
Miami Marlins at New York Mets -135 (Total: 6)
Jose Fernandez vs. Noah Syndergaard
Jose Fernandez’s first start didn’t live up to expectations, but it is fair to expect there to be a little rust and nerves in the 23-year old phenom’s long anticipated return. There is some reasonable concern with him going on the road, as he is just 5-9 with a 3.78 ERA in his career away from home. Of course, that concern should be tempered with the fact he is 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA with 27 strikeouts in 22 innings in four career starts at Citi Field.
Meanwhile, as dynamite as Syndergaard was last season at home, posting a 9-2 record and 2.54 ERA including two sparkling post-season victories, he looks to be even better this season. His slider is reported to be improved to the range of “unhittable” and that doesn’t bode well for Marlin batters tonight in chilly New York. He threw six shutout innings in his debut in Kansas City and gets to come home to a less-daunting lineup tonight. I expect him to string a lot of zeros on the board tonight.
I like the Mets to win, but I am not sure they’ll rack up enough runs to get greedy and take the -1.5 runline and the plus money associated. It seems perfectly possible that Fernandez could match a lot of the zeros this evening given his track record in NYC. I’ll take the Mets to scratch out an extra run at least behind a dominant performance from “Thor”