Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Game Picks - Wednesday: September 28, 2011

Somewhere, Bud Selig is sitting and kicking his legs, cackling with glee. And why shouldn't he? Here we are on the final day of the regular season and both wild cards are tied. All eyes will be on MLB to see how this drama plays out and that's good for baseball. And if the day ends with those ties intact, the regular season will get an extra day as a one game playoff will have to be played tomorrow. The Brewers and Diamondbacks also have something to play for as the Brewers have a one game lead for second seed for the playoffs. If the Brewers lose and the D-backs win, then the D-backs hold the head-to-head edge and would be the second seed. The same can be said in the American League where the Rangers hold a one game edge for second seed. If the Rangers lose and the Tigers win, then the Tigers would get second seed. Such excitement! We also have a batting title on the line in the NL with Jose Reyes and Ryan Braun nearly neck and neck going into the last day.

As for the picks, they had a good day yesterday. The Red Sox win and the Bay Rays win were losses in the picks tally. The Yankees pick would have been gold if it hadn't been for Rafael Soriano. The Angels' pick was downright silly the way the Rangers are hitting. Picking the Royals when Sean O'Sullivan started was a stretch and the Mets lost a heartbreaker to the Reds. But that was it on the negative side.

The Fan has been sitting here for 176 straight days making these regular season picks and for the most part, enjoyed every minute of it. So it's sad that today will be the last full schedule until April. The game picks will keep chugging along through the playoffs and World Series. But still. There is something magical about the regular season and that ends today...or tomorrow. Today's picks:

  • The Mets over the Reds: Miguel Bautista. Sheesh. Okay. We'll go with the old guy. The other option would be Edinson Volquez, the Reds' version of Lackey/Burnett. Jose Reyes goes for the batting title.
  • The Blue Jays over the White Sox: The White Sox haven't lost in the post-Ozzie era. But they face Brandon Morrow who has strung some awesomeness lately. Phil Humber goes for the White Sox. Bet John Farrell is glad he isn't sitting in the Red Sox dugout getting all the blame for the Red Sox pitching. The Blue Jays have shown promise this season for the future.
  • The Rockies over the Giants: Two young pitchers in this one. Drew Pomeranz goes for the Rockies and Eric Surkamp goes for the Giants. Both are coming off of bad outings their last time out.
  • The Nationals over the Marlins: The Marlins last game ever in their terrible home park. No sadness there. The Nationals have had a promising season and their biggest promise pitches today in Stephen Strasburg. He'll face Chris Volstad, who has been better of late.
  • The Red Sox over the Orioles. The Red Sox haven't won back-to-back games since August. But everything is lined up for them to win today with Jon Lester on the mound versus Alfredo Simon. That should work.
  • The Tigers over the Indians: There's no reason to think the Tigers should win today. Rick Porcello will only go a few innings. But the Tigers just can't seem to lose and they should beat Zach McAllister.
  • The Braves over the Phillies: Tim Hudson will have few obstacles in this game. He has to win it of course. But he faces Joe Blanton and a cast of irregulars.
  • The Cardinals over the Astros: Brett Myers is no roll over pitcher. In fact he's been brilliant in his last five starts. Chris Carpenter has to pitch his best and the Cards need to scratch out a few runs. TLR should be in his glory.
  • The Rangers over the Angels: Matt Harrison and probably Scott Feldman and others are all better than Garrett Richards who starts the last game for the Angels as they finish their disappointing season.
  • The Royals over the Twins: It will be sad to see the Royals' season end. They have been terrific fun to watch this year. You can see promise all over the place. They need a stud starter next year and they could be contenders. Bruce Chen should be retained after the season he's had. Carl Pavano will mercifully end a really bad Twins season.
  • The Brewers over the Pirates: Zack Greinke will try to nail down the second seed, but at what cost? Greinke should be the opening playoff starter. This doesn't make sense. He's better than Gallardo. So why? Anyway, he'll accomplish his mission at the expense of Pirates' starter, Jeff Locke.
  • The Cubs over the Padres: The off season will be very interesting for the Cubs. Very interesting indeed. Ryan Dempster will end the season on a positive note though Wade LeBlanc suddenly discovered his fastball in his last outing.
  • The Diamondbacks over the Dodgers: By the time the game starts, they might know the outcome of the Brewers game. So whether Joe Saunders actually pitches a real start will determine this pick. Ted Lilly goes for the Dodgers.
  • The Athletics over the Mariners: Gio Gonzalez has finished strong after a tough start to his season. He goes for win number sixteen. He should get it against Anthony Vasquez, a lefty with no stuff.

And the Game of the Day (last one of the season):

  • The Bay Rays over the Yankees: Who will start for the Yankees? TBO. Who is not available in the bullpen: Mariano Rivera, Rafael Soriano (thank goodness). How many regular starters will the Yankees play? Will they insist on getting Posada in there instead of Jesus Montero? Why? Never mind. David Price wins it.

Yesterday: 10-5
Week: 26-22
Month: 221-150
Season: 1353-1059
Games of the Day: 110-66

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