Ugh. Friday the 13th. Did not realize that until typing out the heading for the post. This picker is not superstitious. But the fear is there for other people who are. And it is always the other guy you have to look out for. All this picker is looking for today is a day as decent as yesterday. When the correct picks double the incorrect ones, that's just fine and dandy. The Cubs winning an 8-0 shutout was a surprise. It is not a surprise that Matt Garza pitched well, but that the Cubs scored runs when he pitched. And it was against Zack Greinke. The Angels built a good lead and then couldn't hold back the Twins, who have suddenly found an offense. That pick was wrong. The other one was because in hindsight, picking the Marlins to beat the Phillies was just plain stupid.
All thirty teams are in action today, so that is fun. Plus, we have the added bonus of a lot of home openers today. Game times have a nine hour range starting at one o'clock all the way to a ten o'clock starts (eastern times) on the left coast. If you so choose, you can really gorge on baseball today. Here are Friday's picks:
- The Yankees over the Angels: The Yankees have their home opener today and Jorge Posada will throw out the first pitch. Ervin Santana will pitch for the Angels and he's always a mixed bag. You never know what you will get from him. Hiroki Kuroda gets his second start for the Yankees. It better be different than his last one for this pick to come home.
- The Red Sox over the Bay Rays: The Red Sox break in Fenway today. The fans in the stands will be pensive considering the team's 1-5 start with Josh Beckett on the mound after he threw home run derby to the Tigers last time out. The prediction here is that Beckett will be back on his good game and the Red Sox will squeak out some runs against David Price.
- The White Sox over the Tigers: The White Sox are swinging the bats well and Jake Peavy looked pretty good his last time out. Max Scherzer looked awful in his first start. Thus, this pick.
- The Cardinals over the Cubs: Lance Berkman will not be available. But there will be much love in the air as the Cardinals have their home opener fresh off their World Series win. That will carry the day as Adam Wainwright beats Jeff Samardzija.
- The Royals over the Indians: It was predicted in this space that Luke Hochevar will put it together this season and his first start showed promise of doing that. Derek Lowe was great his first time out however. The Royals will need to score a few runs and their offense hasn't been great so far.
- The Giants over the Pirates: Matt Cain will be better than his first start. And as much as this picker is impressed with John McDonald, he just never seems to put two good starts together in succession. The Giants look better offensively this season.
- The Nationals over the Reds: Jordan Zimmermann is a better pitcher at this point in his career than Bronson Arroyo is in his. And that carries this pick. There is some concern about the Nationals' offense though.
- The Phillies over the Mets: Cliff Lee should win. R.A. Dickey should not. Those are the shoulds, but we'll have to see how the game goes.
- The Blue Jays over the Orioles: There has not been a pick against the home team this entire post and it is making this picker very nervous. But Brandon Morrow has to be a better pick than Tommy Hunter, right? Argh.
- The Astros over the Marlins: Just for the sake of picking against a home team. The Marlins go home for the first time after the Ozzie mess. That home run machine still hasn't gone off. Will it today? Lucas Harrell was awesome his first time out for the Astros. The Marlins' offense is struggling. Ricky Nolasco will have to be great to ruin this pick.
- The Braves over the Brewers: Are our worst fears of the post-Prince Brewers coming true? It sure seems that way. Jair Jurrjens isn't an automatic pick, but he should win at home over Randy Wolf.
- The Rangers over the Twins: Matt Harrison is a man-crush here at the FanDome. He faces Anthony Swarzak. The Twins have been bedeviling so far. We'll see.
- The Diamondbacks over the Rockies: Juan Nicasio had a nice start his last time out and that was a nice story after he broke his neck last season. But this picker never picks against Daniel Hudson.
- The Mariners over the Athletics: These two teams again? What the heck, scheduler!? For crying out loud. Felix Hernandez over Bartolo Colon. The Mariners' offense has been humming along and Montero and Smoak haven't gotten going yet.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Dodgers over the Padres: Clayton Richard faced twice in the same week should prove disastrous for the Padres. Aaron Harang should bounce back from a bad first start. The Dodgers keep winning.
Games of the Day: 5-3