Marlins vs. Phillies Pick MLB – May 16th

Everyone loves a great story.  The romantic sweeping narrative of the underdog that can; the Rudy-like squad exceeding expectations and lifting up a delirious fan base.  It’s great stuff and everyone loves it.

Well, almost everyone.

I hate to crap on this developing fairy tale, but Phillies bettors, beware.  If the season ended today, the Phillies would host the wildcard game and are only one game behind the Nationals for the East division lead, which would earn them home field advantage in the opening round of the playoffs.  But a lot of this is pretty fortunate and ripe for a massive regression to the mean.  Entering today, the Phillies have the third best record in the National League, but only the 12th best run differential.  In fact, their -30 puts them ahead of only the Brewers, Reds and Braves, who are a combined 33 games below .500.  The two teams in front of them with similar substantial negative run differentials are six and five games below .500 respectively.

Right now, the Phillies are six games OVER.

It is a statistical anomaly, and one, despite the romantic narrative, has “regression to the mean” written ALL OVER IT…

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Today’s Free Pick:

Miami Marlins -130 at Philadelphia Phillies +120 (Total: 7.5)

Adam Conley (2-2, 3.72 ERA) vs. Jerad Eickhoff (1-5, 4.43 ERA)

Sticking with the above intro, I am on the Marlins tonight.  The Fish have been good since their dismal opening two weeks of the season.  They’ve won 16 of 21 after a little blip was righted with two comeback wins over the Nationals to cap off the weekend.  They have a solid offense and Christian Yellich is giving them a nice lift.  He should enjoy the start to this week as well; he is hitting .566 in his last six games against the Phillies and .331 in 33 lifetime meetings.

Jerad Eickhoff will get the ball for the Phills, one of their few starters who hasn’t had a lot of success this year.  He has lost four consecutive starts, though he did pitch well against Miami earlier this season.  Opposing him will be Conley who took a no-hitter into the eighth inning in his last road start.  He had thrown 13 scoreless innings before allowing four runs in four innings in his last shortened outing.  He is 0-1 but has a 2.00 ERA in his three starts against the Phillies.

I like both teams to get a few runs tonight, but I’ll take the Fish to get a few more.  Laying -130 seems like a decent value.   Bovada had a strange line up this morning, but I imagine it will soon fall in line with everyone else – worth taking a peek to see if you can get a little better value though…

Free Pick: Miami Marlins to WIN -130

Chris Scheeren / Author