MLB (1 Unit) Milwaukee Brewers ML @ Boston Red Sox (+100): 3:10 PM CT on FS1
I just have to fade Nick Pivetta and the injury-riddled Red Sox here, especially getting an even money price. Pivetta was having a solid year, but July has been an incredibly awful month for him, posting a 9.95 ERA and 2.11 WHIP across 4 starts. Sure, a lot of that damage was done by the Yankees lineup, but this Milwaukee squad is a top-tier team against right-handed pitching and should continue his woes.
I just don’t think this Boston lineup, averaging just 3.3 runs per game since the All-Star break, will be able to keep up. They’re missing too many key contributors at the moment, and will face a pitcher in Eric Lauer who has rediscovered his strongest stuff lately. There’s also a massive bullpen discrepancy between these teams, with the Brewers having perhaps the best one-two punch in baseball for closing out a game. That should allow the Brewers to continue Boston’s slide here.
MLB (1 Unit) Baltimore Orioles ML @ Cincinnati Reds (+100): 5:40 PM CT on Bally Sports Ohio
A key component of Baltimore’s rise to relevance has been its ability to take care of business against bad teams. The Orioles are an amazing 16-2 in their past 18 games against teams with a sub-.500 record. That’s not easy to accomplish in the dog days of the baseball season where variance rears its ugly head on a daily basis. A bad team in Cincinnati gives them an opportunity today to extend that run, and I think they do.
The Orioles will send Dean Kremer out today, who has been excellent in away games with a 1.66 road ERA this season. That gives them the starter advantage over Tyler Mahle, who’s been knocked around at his home park this season for a 4.94 ERA. He also struggles more against right-handed bats, which is the vast majority of the Orioles lineup.
With neither of these starters typically going deep into games, a massive bullpen advantage for Baltimore comes into play. Cincinnati is dead-last in bullpen ERA and has allowed the most runs in baseball after the 5th inning, whereas Baltimore is 3rd and 2nd-best in those categories, respectively. With the Orioles playing great baseball in general, I see this pitching edge carrying them to another win over a bad team.
MLB (1 Unit) Philadelphia Phillies -1.5 @ Pittsburgh Pirates (+110): 6:15 PM CT on FOX
Absent a crazy ninth inning of Thursday’s meeting, the Phillies have been dominant in this series. This should be another easy win for Philadelphia here, as they have a pretty sizable pitching advantage.
They’ll send Ranger Suarez to the mound off consecutive excellent starts, one of which came against Atlanta who crushes lefties like him. Pittsburgh does not crush lefties, ranking 27th in average and 26th in OPS against southpaw pitchers. With the current form that Suarez is in, he should have an easy time against the weak Pirates lineup.
The Philly bats should also have an easy time against Mitch Keller here. While he’s calmed down some this month, Keller gets absolutely crushed by the Phillies lineup, allowing a career .438 average and 1.231 OPS to them. With those kind of matchup advantages in their favor, the Phillies should get an easy win against a Pittsburgh team that has the worst run line margin in baseball as an underdog.
MLB (0.5 Unit) LA Dodgers/Colorado Rockies Over 11.5 (-110): 7:10 PM CT on SportsNet RM
It’s not often you look at a Clayton Kershaw start and see that he got absolutely rocked. But that’s what happened the last time he visited Coors Field, allowing 6 runs in just 4 innings.
It could be an isolated incident for a pitcher who could be headed for Cooperstown. Or it could be a trend, considering the Rockies lineup has a combined .333 average and .864 OPS against Kershaw in his career. And considering Colorado has the most runs, most extra base hits, and 2nd-best average against lefties this season, I’m seeing far more of a trend than a mirage.
So I’m inclined to believe the Rockies can get more than a few runs across in this one, and will probably need it with how the Dodgers are hitting everything. Strangely they don’t have great career-hitting numbers against Kyle Freeland, but this season have tagged him for a 7.04 ERA across 3 meetings. Freeland also struggles considerably more at home, with a 5.66 ERA and .306 on-base average allowed. Even with Kershaw on the mound, this one has the potential for a typical Coors slugfest, so take the over.
MLB Texas Rangers/LA Angels Over 8.5 (-110): 8:07 PM CT on FS1
With such bad injury luck, it can sometimes be painful to watch the Angel scrubs surrounding Shohei Ohtani try to help him produce runs. But there should be enough offense from both teams here to get this game over a relatively low total. It seems even lower considering these teams are 9-2 over this number in their meetings this season, averaging 10.5 runs per game.
With Chase Silseth starting for LA here, the Rangers might do the majority of the work to get over the number. The rookie righty has seen his ERA balloon this summer and will have trouble against the big left-handed bats of Texas, as he’s allowing a .357 average and 1.175 OPS to that side.
But the Angels should be able to get some runs in against Glenn Otto, who has a 7.09 ERA across his past 6 starts. He’s far worse against right-handed bats, which LA has plenty of, and they put together good numbers against him in their last meeting. My concern here is Corey Seager possibly out with injury here which really hurts the Texas offense, but this one should be a decent over candidate based on trends alone.
Tiny Nick is 818-687 ATS (+74.5 Units) on his Locks since joining Zone Coverage.
Every day he will offer his Locks and Degenerate picks. Locks are the games he’s confident in. Degenerates are entertaining but riskier picks.