Yesterday was an eye-opening and deciding day in Major League Baseball. The Diamondbacks made a statement behind young ace, Ian Kennedy. The Tigers staked a larger claim on the AL Central title. Of course, this daily little post doesn't care about any of that. It's more about whether the picks were correct than what team is going to compete for the title or not. The two games listed above are a case in point. Both were important to those two teams and to their fan bases, but for this picker one was correct and the other was incorrect. Which is a darn good reason why this daily exercise isn't about money or betting. This writer understands that some of you who drop by here every day are among those who bet on baseball. This isn't a judgement against you. What you do with your money (legally) is up to you. It's just that the author of these picks doesn't ever want being correct to be more important than the beauty that is daily baseball.
Was there any point in that paragraph? Sheesh. Perhaps this picker got up too early this morning. The nine correct picks capped off a very good week of picking and even got this young month back into the black. The only bad taste of the whole thing was the Game of the Day pick going down in flames from an impressive uprising of the Florida Marlins over David Herndon and the Phillies. The Marlins hit three homers in the bottom of the eighth off of Herndon to win the game.
Oh yes, and speaking of the Game of the Day, a comment yesterday indicated that this picker is a giant rube for picking the Phillies - Marlins game as the Game of the Day. The person who left the comment doesn't understand the concept, so obviously it needs clarification. The Game of the Day isn't about the most meaningful game or the most exciting. The Game of the Day is the pick this picker feels the most confident about in its selection.
Okay, enough rambling. Time for Sunday's picks:
- The Phillies over the Marlins: Roy Halladay was tight-fisted in the hitter's park in Cincinnati. How, then, will he do in the pitcher's park in Florida? Yes, exactly. Anibal Sanchez is the poor soul who has to keep up with him.
- The Dodgers over the Braves: Hmm...three picks, three aces. Clayton Kershaw goes for his eighteenth win and has been on a tear. He is faced by Randall Delgado. Randall Delgado!?
- The Nationals over the Mets: A lot going on in this game. First, Ryan Zimmerman is on fire. Second, the Mets are really struggling on the road (3-9 recently). Next, Mike Pelfrey has an awful career record against the Nationals and in the month of September. Lastly, two sites are listing Livan Hernandez as the starter for the Nationals but that's probably not correct as reports indicated that Hernandez has been shut down for the rest of the season.
- The Red Sox over the Rangers: Neither John Lackey or Matt Harrison have had success against the teams they are facing, so expect a high scoring game with the Red Sox finishing on top.
- The Bay Rays over the Orioles: Jeremy Hellickson and Jeremy Guthrie are difficult to pick. Guthrie has been very good lately and Hellickson is good until he gets to the third time through the batting order.
- The Brewers over the Astros: Shaun Marcum and Wandy Rodriguez is a good match up. But if this game gets to the bullpens, the Brewers are much better in that area. Which is the understatement of the year.
- The Royals over the Indians: The Royals are nailing the Indians' coffin in the AL Central. Jeff Francis has been great lately and Jeanmar Gomez was great last time out, but vulnerable.
- The Cardinals over the Reds: Edwin Jackson is on one of his good surges and must be picked until he goes the other way again. Bronson Arroyo should yield a few runs at least.
- The Cubs over the Pirates: Charlie Morton is struggling and Randy Wells has been going in the other direction. Lee hurt his old team yesterday, but the Cubs should prevail today.
- The Twins over the Angels: Kevin Slowey has been slowly improving with each start. Joel Pineiro should give up enough runs for the Twins to win.
- The Diamondbacks over the Giants: The Diamondbacks have a chance to really deflate their rivals. Ryan Vogelsong is singing a little out of tune lately while Daniel Hudson has been getting stronger.
- The Rockies over the Padres: Aaron Cook isn't a lock by any means except for when he pitches in San Diego where he is 7-1 lifetime with a minuscule ERA (SSS). Matt Latos has been a bit of a disappointment this year, but could have a big game at any time. So buyer beware.
- The Athletics over the Mariners: Blake Beavan has been impressive for the Mariners. Trevor Cahill has been confusing. But the A's are on a roll and this pick is for that fact.
- The White Sox over the Tigers: Mark Buehrle is having one of the quietest best seasons of his career. Max Scherzer has been inconsistent. Scherzer will probably pitch well this time out, but it won't be enough.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Yankees over the Blue Jays: C.C. Sabathia at home is a pretty potent combination. The Yankees need to get to Brett Cecil and they should be able to do that.
Last week: 62-36
Games of the Day: 96-56