We get back to MLB baseball this weekend, as the All-Star Break is a thing of the past. The impact of the All-Star Game will be felt later in the year at the World Series, where the American League will once again have home field advantage in the biggest series of the year. This will be the fourth year in a row that the American League has secured home field advantage. The Royals came up big in the American League, with none other than Salvador Perez connecting on a 2-run bomb early to help the American League cause. Perez and the Royals need to get the deep bombs going in the second-half of the season, as they have some catching up to do in the AL Central.
Right now, it isn’t the Royals that are enjoying success at the top of the decision. Instead, it’s the Indians who are sitting atop the mountain. The Tigers, Royals, and White Sox all trail. The White Sox jumped out as the surprise team, the Indians reverted that notion to their corner, and now the favorite in the division, Kansas City Royals, have some work to do.
It’s not going to surprise me if they turn things up in the second-half. I feel the All-Star Game might be the beginning of a long and successful run for the Royals. Cleveland don’t want to let go of this, but I think the Royals have something to say about how the first-half transpired. The first-half went well for us, with us going into the second-half of the schedule at 56-40-4.
I’m not going to complain about that, but we all know we can be better regardless of how well things are going. I hit 64% on my MLB picks at The Sports Geek a couple of seasons ago, that would be a nice goal to beat. With the Olympics just around the corner in a couple of weeks, and football getting here shortly, there is plenty to be excited about in sports right now. Friday night we are going to head to Anaheim, where the Angels are attempting to be a second-half team. There wasn’t much to get excited about in the first-half, as they head into tonight with a record of 37-52.
Ouch. That doesn’t look the kind of record you would come to find from a team with Mike Trout on it. Conversely, the White Sox are going to try and stay afloat in the AL Central. After the first month or two, the White Sox haven’t looked like the same team. As expected, they’ve regressed and have fallen back. Nevertheless, for a team who were looked at as being one of the worst teams in baseball before the season even started, the White Sox have been doing fine. Get our exclusive pick tonight on the bases below.
Chicago White Sox vs. L.A. Angels
Miguel Gonzalez (2-4, 4.39 ERA) vs. Hector Santiago (6-4, 4.58 ERA)
I keep hearing don’t worry, don’t worry the Angels are going to be fine. Listen, the Angels are 37-52, regardless of how well they play in the second-half, they might have ran out of room here to play catch up. From a betting perspective, they might be a decent bet in the second-half, but with regards to playing for the postseason, I think you can forget about it. The Angels can still go on a nice run, but I don’t feel it would be enough. I do feel that the White Sox are going to regress further, and will finish this season below .500. They are holding their head above water thanks to the first month of the season. The White Sox are coming off a 1-2 series against the last place Braves, including a Chris Sale loss. The White Sox have gone 15-17 their last 32 games. I think that is a pretty good snapshot of the White Sox.
One of the only adequate pitchers on the Angels’ staff, Hector Santiago, will get the call today. They were hoping to get just a bit more out of Santiago this season. However, he has seemed to be at his best lately, which may signal good things for the second-half of the season. Note that he didn’t allow a single run in the last two starts and only 7 hits. In four of his last five starts, he gave up no more than 1 run per game.
The White Sox have been putrid in Anaheim, it’s been a vacation for them, with a record of 1-8 in their last nine games playing here. Gonzalez enters after pitching for a 4.66 ERA in his last three stats. I see the White Sox coming back after the break a bit sluggish in California. Especially playing in a place they haven’t been able to do much winning at. The Angels start their campaign of respectability tonight. They get a win tonight, and for a minute look like a team worthy of being in the postseason.
PICK: ANGELS TO WIN -130