It was low-scoring night in major league baseball, with eleven of the fifteen games staying under seven runs or less. In fact, only the 8-7 game between the Phillies and the Rockies saw double-digit runs come across the plate. Perhaps today with some softer pitching matchups and a bevy of afternoon warm-weather matinees offenses will bounce back and rule the day.
There may not have been a ton of offense, but there was plenty of excitement. Jay Bruce gave the red-hot Reds their fourth win in five days with a walkoff homerun in the tenth inning against Milwaukee, meanwhile, up the state former-Red Drew Stubbs gave the Indians a walk-off victory with his speed to the plate, a 2-1 win (and a loss for me, unfortunately).
It should be a good day in MLB, so let’s kick off the weekend with a pair of quick picks.
San Francisco +187 at Atlanta Braves -196 (Total: 7.5)
Chad Gaudin (2-1, 2.33 ERA) vs. Mike Minor (8-2, 2.44 ERA)
Chad Gaudin makes his third start since joining the Giants rotation, and to this point, his addition has been a positive one. He has thrown quality starts in each, going six inning and allowing two runs to both the Cardinals and Arizona – two good offensive ball clubs. He will have to be sharp tonight to beat Mike Minor, who has been fantastic this season, posting an 8-2 record with a 2.44 ERA and a ridiculous WHIP of just 0.94.
The Braves have the advantage tonight for sure, but I’m not sure it merits a nearly 2:1 line. Gaudin has been pitching well, and the Giants have finally been hitting well on this road trip; especially NL MVP Buster Posey. I like the value of the Giants at +187, especially with the 6.17 runs per game they’ve averaged on this road trip.
Free Pick: San Francisco Giants WIN +187
Washington Nationals -123 at Cleveland Indians +114 (Total: 8)
Jordan Zimmermann (9-3, 2.00 ERA) vs. Scott Kazmir (3-4, 5.33 ERA)
Kazmir is a nice feel good story, returning to the majors after a nearly three-year injury-fueled absence, but he will have his work cut out for him facing Zimmermann tonight. I’ve made some good money betting on Zimmermann this year, who despite having a 9-3 record, 2.00 ERA and a league-leading 0.89 WHIP, continues to get favorable lines. Minus 123 is a pretty fair price to pay for a favorable matchup tonight.
I’m frankly surprised this line is as flat as it is. I know the Nats have struggled with the bats, but if you throw out the rough start in Baltimore, Zimmerman has allowed only 13 earned runs in 12 starts, including no runs allowed in his last two outings. I’ll bank on him delivering yet another good performance tonight in Cleveland.
Free Pick: Washington Nationals to WIN -123