What is it this baseball season with significant changes in prices from the opening line to the closing line? 30 cent drops are occurring in multiple games every night. I have bet baseball for several years now and I don’t remember them fluctuating this much. That sort of thing in football is normal, but baseball isn’t the most widely bet sport, so I don’t think it is due to massive money flowing in on one side. Last night the Tigers went all the way from -145 to -109 just before the first pitch. The books were wrong on that one, as the Tigers went for a 4-0 win over the Indians. Note that from what I have seen, on those extreme line moves, it doesn’t really matter and they hit around 50%, so don’t feel shy to make a play on a better price that moved down. Of course, that is when handicapping comes into it and you need to do a little bit of research to see if there is a reason for it. Now on to my Saturday pick.
The Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays duel in Florida today, where the NHL Finals are taking place as well. There will probably be more people at the Lightning game, an arena that holds around 20,000, than this game today, approximately a 40,000 seat stadium. But I feel like there is money to be won, so I don’t care if the game is sold out or there are two people there in attendance. Jeff Samardzija gets the start for the White Sox. A pitcher that is looking for a big bounce back after getting abused in his last two starts. He is supposed to be the ace of the White Sox, but most definitely hasn’t been playing like it of late.
Chicago White Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Jeff Samardzija (4-4, 4.93 ERA) vs. Chris Archer (7-4, 1.84 ERA)
How is it possible to have a 1.84 ERA and have four losses? Being on the Rays will do that to you, as Chris Archer is having a historic season thus far, but the lackluster offense hasn’t given him much to work with. Although, he hasn’t needed much to work with, but a couple or three runs would be nice, and would be enough for him to win in his starts. As long as the bullpen doesn’t blow up, Archer can bring you a win alone. He comes in with a 1.84 ERA, and what he is done of late is nothing short of phenomenal. Note that Archer has a 0.39 ERA in his last three games pitched, along with a 0.61 WHIP and .171 OBP. In his five starts he hasn’t allowed more than a run in any game, only 3 runs allowed in total. That is one of the best stretches from a pitcher I have seen in 2015.
Samardzija would love to turn his misfortunes into a nice stretch like that here. He’s been getting rocked, but fully capable of having a big start today against an anemic Rays’ offense. This is the offense you want to face when you’re coming off two bad starts. I think he is a better pitcher than what he has shown lately and see this game turning into a pitching duel featuring Archer and Samardzija. The White Sox offense should leave little problems for Archer the way he’s being hurling the ball. Take a look at the UNDER 7 in this matchup today for your Saturday MLB pick.
PICK: UNDER 7 RUNS (-125)