We notched a second straight winner as the Mariners struggles continued last night at Safeco Field. They got an incredible pitching effort from J.A. Happ, throwing seven scoreless innings but a ninth inning homerun from Logan Forsythe and a squandered lead-off triple in the bottom of the ninth led to a disappointing 1-0 loss for the M’s. They will try to snap their misery tonight with their ace on the hill, Felix Hernandez, but they are going to need some more offense as they’ve averaged 0.5 runs so far in the series against the Rays.
Meanwhile, another AL contender saw their misery extended when the Detroit Tigers fell to .500 after suffering their eighth straight loss, this time a two-out walkoff homerun did them in. I still think Detroit will be fine and they have plenty of time to get back in the race, but with the way the Royals have played and the Indians are surging, they better not fall too much further behind…
Let’s see if we can make it three straight with a nice Saturday winner on a day packed with awesome and unique sporting events; The Belmont Stakes, the start of the Women’s World Cup and the UEFA Champions League Final (and Game Two of the Stanley Cup) – so you may NOT be watching baseball today, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some good advantageous lines out there for us…
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Today’s Free Pick:
Pittsburgh Pirates -102 at Atlanta Braves -108 (Total: 8)
Jeff Locke (3-3, 5.34 ERA) vs. Julio Tehran (4-2, 4.87 ERA)
These teams have been scoring some runs lately, punctuated by yesterday’s 10-8 Pirates victory, and things could very well continue in that direction with the recent struggles of today’s starting pitchers. Both have been All Stars in the recent past, but that past seems more distant every day.
Tehran is the more puzzling of the two; he has electric stuff and should be better than the 6.23 ERA and eight walks in his last three outings. In fact, control has plagued both, as Locke has walked nine and stuck out just five in his last three outings. If each issues some free passes early tonight, expect this total to evaporate quickly.
Andrew McCuthchen has the best offensive numbers in baseball over the last month, hitting nearly .500 with an OPS of 1.387 – which is insanity – like Barry Bonds height of juicing insanity. I like him to continue his hot ways and to do some damage for the Buccos. I can’t see Loke shutting down the Bravos either – this one feels like an easy OVER to me. Perhaps one of the pitchers will have a throwback effort today; Tehran has been good at home, but I’ll take the larger trends and bet on the offenses tonight.