MLB Picks for May 18th – Pirates Reds, Yankees Orioles

Pittsburgh Pirates +140 @ Cincinnati Reds -150 (Total: 8.5)
Charlie Morton (4-1 3.13 ERA) v. Bronson Arroyo (3-3, 3.78 ERA)

The Reds continue to sizzle through the NL Central, taking advantage of some terrible baseball played by the Cubs the last two nights to sweep their second consecutive division opponent. Tonight, they try to remain perfect in the sixth game of their home stand, hosting the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The pitching matchup favors the Pirates slightly on paper, but Arroyo has been very good against the Bucs in recent performances. His first outing versus them this season was rough, but the reds still remain 5-2 in his last seven starts. Morton threw a gem earlier this season in Great American Ballpark, but he is facing a much hotter ballclub this time around.

The Pirates road record over the last two years has hovered around a nearly-unbelievable .250 winning percentage. The Reds, meanwhile, have won 11 of 13 overall, eight in a row at home and have dominated right0handed pitching at home all season long (11-3 in their last 14 games).

Laying -150 to get the Reds tonight is not a big price to pay for a ballclub with so many statistical trends pointing in their favor.

PICK: Cincinnati Reds to WIN (-150)

New York Yankees +110 @ Baltimore Orioles -120 (Total: 9)
Bartolo Colon (2-2, 3.74 ERA) vs. Zach Britton (5-2, 2.42 ERA)

The Yankees have been making noise recently, but for none of the right reasons. Somehow muted in all the dissention over Jorge Posada and Derek Jeter was the fact they got swept by the Red Sox, and salvaged a split in Tampa Bay with a win in the final game. They are currently only 2 games over .500… and only two games ahead of the Orioles in the AL East.

[The Orioles have said they have no fear of the vaunted Yankees, at least since Buck Shoewalter took over, however they are 0-4 this season, and just 1-7 since the three-game sweep that ushered in Buck’s arrival. However, they have to feel good with Zach Britton on the mound. Britton has been fantastic this season, posting a microscopic 2.42 ERA in the American League. His WHIP has been even better; just 1.02, and 0.79 in his last three starts.

This line is a little slimmer than it should be, because the amateur money will flow heavily in the direction of the Bronx Bombers because of the names on the jerseys – heck even “Bartolo Colon” sounds comfortably familiar. Head in the opposite direction tonight. I love the O’s at home at only -120.

PICK: Baltimore Orioles to WIN (-120)

Good Luck with your MLB betting tonight.  If you play online poker (and aren’t from the US) you should check out Mike’s PKR Bonus Code guide that will give you a bonus at a cool 3D poker room.

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Chris Scheeren / Author