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Rangers vs. A’s Pick MLB – April 8th

Welcome to Miami Matt Latos. The local high school product returned home and didn’t even get to enjoy the first inning change-over before heading to the showers. It probably wasn’t the first start the Fish had in mind after spending a healthy sum of money to acquire Latos, especially given the injury-riddled season he experienced last year. My UNDER pick was short-lived, handing me my first loss of the baseball season (3-1 ATS) but it was a good reminder of what a crazy game this was – how many of YOU would have put money on one of the more weak offenses in the national League oblitering the over before their defense took the field? It’s a crazy game, but it’s also what makes it great.

Meanwhile, San Diego and the upstart Padres got an important early season win, touching up the Dodgers for four runs in the ninth to win 7-3. It evens the series at a game apiece, and while there is obviously a marathon to play, it is always important to beat the team you hope to unseat as the champ in those head-to-head matchups.

Today is Game Three for MOST MLB opening series, which means it is historically a day where the offenses get a chance to face non top-tier starters, and generally some more offense begins to take shape today. Let’s hone in on one such game for today’s free pick.

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Today’s Free Pick:

Texas Rangers +145 at Oakland A’s -160 (Total: 7)

Ross Detwiler vs. Scott Kazmir

Scott Kazmir had an All-Star campaign and a career-resugent season last year, but still has a lot to prove in 2015. His final two months of the season were less than stellar, posting a 3-6 record with a 6.05 ERA and a WHIP nearing one and a half. The A’s are going to need him to revert to early 2014 form if they have any chance to keep up with the mariners and Angels in the West.

The Rangers will counter tonight with Ross Detwiler, a good pitcher who was simply superflousous in the Washington Nationals plans, so he ended up as the number three starter for the Rangers (with Darvish missing the season slotting him up a rung). I expect him to make the most of the opportunity and be solid in the Rangers rotation. The Rangers have a decent lineup behind him as well, so he should get reasonable run support on most nights.

I like value when looking for baseball wagers and tend to shy away from big favorites, especially if they don’t have an elite starting pitcher on the mound. That makes tonight’s game attractive from a value standpoint. The A’s were just 24-25 against left handed pitchers last season, Detwiler being a lefty, is an edge for the Rangers. Also, despite a miserable season last year, they have won 8 of 11 games in the O.com Coliseum.

I’ll take the value of a big fat plus-money line tonight and hope Detwiler shows well in his American League debut pitching in pitcher-friendly O.com.

Free Pick: Texas Rangers to WIN +145