Our nice five-game winning streak was snapped yesterday as the Pirates put together the best effort against Clayton Kershaw that any team has mustered since mid-June and scratched out a tough 3-2 win on the road. The win pulled them to just four games behind the Cardinals, who continued to get dominated by the Cubbies yesterday (who are also within five games of the division leaders). It is looking more and more like the Pirates and Cubs are destined to meet in a one-game, winner-take-all wildcard game – which is a shame, because they could very well be the two best teams in the National League (all of baseball?) right now.
It’s an NFL Sunday, so baseball flies under the radar for sure, but that doesn’t mean we can’t scratch out a little profit on the diamond today. So let’s start a new winning streak today with today’s featured pick.
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Today’s Free Pick:
New York Yankees at New York Mets
CC Sabathia vs. Matt Harvey
I’ve made some decent profits all year long fading the hefty hurler from the Yankees. And as easy as it is to just glance at CC Sabathia’s past year and a half, he continues to remain a mainstay in the Yankees rotation. It’s kind of like when Barry Zito and Lincecum went bad for the Giants – you knew you weren’t getting the guy you had grown accustomed to, but his good was SO GOOD that the lingering “maybe, just maybe” hope remained. Plus the fact, there just isn’t a clear-cut replacement waiting in the wings.
That seemingly eternal faith in the big guy has actually been reasonably rewarded of late as he has posted a 1.80 ERA in his last three starts. Of course, that only spans 14 innings, so let’s not get too jazzed up.
Meanwhile, I’m just not feeling the Mets strategy with Harvey. This “half-in, half-out” stuff feels like a big distraction and it seems unlikely that Harvey will be unaffected; either mentally or physically, not being able to get any consistent rhythm has to eventually take a toll. Tonight is his first appearance in 12 days, and even though he has been excellent against the Yankees in his career and this season, with an obvious governor on his speedometer tonight, it seems doubtful he has more than five innings in him tonight.
I think it all adds up to two of the better offenses post-All Star Break in all of baseball having solid nights. I’d have thought this game was a 7.5 or 8 run total for sure, but I’m seeing it at just 7 most places. That feels like a pretty good deal to me.
Look for Cespedes and Wright to do some damage for the Mets, and for the Yankee lineup to take advantage of a less-than-sharp Harvey and extra exposure to the idle relief portion of the bullpen.