Minnesota Twins at Detroit Tigers (+150, 9.5)
We are in the home stretch of the MLB season and the Twins continue to prove their doubters wrong, as they continue to maintain their lead for the second American League Wild Card spot. They’ll look to extend that lead when they continue their four-game set against the Tigers in Detroit.
The Twins, who are ahead of their challengers by 3.5-games in the wild-card race, have taken the first two games of this series by a score of 19-4 and will send Ervin Santana to the mound in hopes of securing a series win versus the AL Central rival Tigers.
Santana has had quite a nice bounce-back season for the Twins, going 15-8 with a 3.34 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP and he’s even better on the road. The veteran right-hander is 9-3 with a 2.76 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP away from Target Field.
Meanwhile, the Tigers counter with Matt Boyd. Boyd is coming off the best start of his career when he pitched a complete game one-hitter against the White Sox the last time out. But before that, the Tigers lost his seven previous starts, where he pitched to a 6.61 ERA and a 1.74 WHIP.
Expect the Twins surprisingly balance lineup to stay hot in this game, in fact, so much so that taking a look at the runline is the way to go. The Twins are one of the best teams in baseball against the runline on the road this season at 48-28.
: Twins -1.5 (-100)
San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers (-110, 7)
It’s a battle of first versus worst as the Giants and Dodgers continue their three-game set Saturday in Los Angeles.
The Dodgers took the opener 4-2, but it was just their third win in their last 17 division games and it won’t get any easier as they face Madison Bumgarner in Game 2 and are just -110 at home in this matchup.
While it’s been a down year for the Giants, Bumgarner continues to do his thing. Despite a bit of rough patch, he still has a 3.48 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP with 96 strikeouts and just 19 walks. Plus, the MadBum always gets up for matchups with the Dodgers. The southpaw is 14-9 with a 2.59 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP in 27 career starts versus Los Angeles.
The Dodgers counter with Hyun-Jin Ryu, who is 2-2 with a 3.47 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP at home this season. Ryu faces a terrible Giants lineup that ranks dead last in home runs and OPS and 29th in runs scored per game.
Don’t be scared of the low total, expect a low scoring game here.
: Under 7
Streaking and Slumping Starting Pitchers
Streaking: Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nationals (14-4, 2.60 ERA, $)
Stephen Strasburg has been filthy over the last month.
In his last five starts, he has a record of 4-0 (5-0 team win/loss), thrown 35 innings allowing only one run (0.26 ERA), has 41 strikeouts, and only 6 walks.
Strasburg and the Nationals are -204 favorites today in Queens against Noah Syndergaard (remember him?) and the Mets.
Slumping: Chad Bettis, Colorado Rockies (1-3, 6.23 ERA, $)
It has certainly been a bumpy return to Major League Baseball for Chad Bettis. The Rockies’right-hander has made just seven starts after missing the majority of the season while he was undergoing cancer treatment. In his first start on August 14th, he pitched seven scoreless innings. Since things have been a mess.
In his last three starts, he is 1-1 with an ERA of 9.28. The crown jewel of this slump being his last appearance, where he only got one out and allowed five earned runs.
Bettis will try and turn things around tonight in San Diego, where the Rockies take on the Padres. The Rockies are available at -101.
Saturday's Top Trends
* Astros are 10-1 in their last 11 home games. -160 vs. Angels.
* Under is 10-0-1 in Brewers last 11 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Cubs/Brewers Total: 9
* Red Sox are 10-1 in the last 11 meetings with Reds. -139 at Cincinnati.
* Indians are 12-1 in their last 13 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. -193 at Mariners.
* Under is 10-1 in Chad Bettis' last 11 starts vs. a team with a losing record. Rockies/Padres Total: 8.
Weather To Keep An Eye On
There should be no precipitation impacting any action on the field today across Major League Baseball.
The only notable wind in the forecast is at Oakland Coliseum where the Athletics are hosting the Rangers and will be greeted with a 10-15 mile per hour wind. The total for tonight’s game is currently at 9.5.
Ump Of The Day
Tripp Gibson III
will be calling balls and strikes today at Minute Maid Park for this afternoon’s game between the Astros and Angels.
Gibson has been pretty even down the middle this season, 13-14 home team W/L and 15-12 O/U. However, the last few weeks with Gibson behind the plate has been bad news for backers of home teams. The road team has won seven straight when Gibson has the gear on.
The Angels are +147 road pups today.