Sunday was a good picking day and got the new week started off on the right foot. Out of fifteen games, only five were incorrect. They all concerned contenders. Bob Nethorton jinxed the Cardinals pick by pointing out on Twitter that the first two games of that series were picked correctly. Bad, Bob. Bad. The Yankees lost. The Nationals lost and the Braves lost. And seriously, picking the Twins to beat the Rays was pretty stupid. Sometimes going for the upset pick can come back to bite you. The Yankees might have won their game if Joe Girardi hadn't brought in Igarashi. There is a reason he is a minor league pitcher. Those three quick runs he coughed up were the ballgame. And why the heck would the Yankees pitch to Edwin Encarnacion. Dumb.
There are eleven games on the schedule as eight teams get the day off. Here are Monday's picks:
- The Pirates over the Dodgers: Aaron Harang and Jeff Karstens both seem to equal themselves out. The two team's offenses are about the same. The Pirates have a slightly better bullpen and they are home, thus the pick.
- The Rangers over the Yankees: This is an extremely difficult pick to make. Not because of this picker's fan affiliation but because there are so many variables here. The Yankees are home. The Yankees could probably hit Ryan Dempster. But Josh Hamilton is hot again and he loves hitting in Yankee Stadium. Plus, the Yankees have an emergency start by David Phelps. Phelps has shown flashes of being really good and has a future as a big league pitcher. But to throw him into the fire against the Rangers? Not a good idea.
- The White Sox over the Blue Jays: The odds are that Carlos Villanueva will give up only three runs. That has been what he has done most of his starts. The question then is will the Blue Jays score three runs against Jake Peavy? No. They won't.
- The Phillies over the Marlins: This picker has a soft spot for Nathan Eovaldi for some reason. Maybe because his name sounds Italian. But anyway, picking him against Cole Hamels would probably be pretty stupid.
- The Braves over the Padres: Eric Stults looks like a pretty good pitcher. But Mike Minor has a better chance of shutting down the Padres than the other way around.
- The Cubs over the Astros: Jeff Samardzija has not won regularly since the start of the season. But he is still pitching well. He should shut down the Astros. This picker would not ever pick Armando Galarraga in any game for any team.
- The Tigers over the Twins: If the Tigers are going to make a late run, they have to win games against teams like the Twins. Anibal Sanchez hasn't seemed to get his footing in a Tigers' uniform, but perhaps this game he will be better. Sam Deduno has a nice record, but his walks are piling up and he wasn't so good his last time out.
- The Brewers over the Rockies: There is a lot of debate going on about whether Mike Fiers is real or due for a crash here soon. This picker tends toward the former, at least until he actually pitches toward the latter. No matter how good he is or isn't, Coors Field isn't a fun place to pitch. Jeff Francis is used to pitching there, but the Brewers will out-slug the Rockies in this one.
- The Angels over the Indians: It is real tough to pick C.J. Wilson in this one. He
has simply not been good lately. But he is facing the Indians and that gives him more of a
BatJustin Masterson is very unpredictable. The Angels started playing Vernon Wells again. Stupid. Trout and Trumbo need to be in EVERY game.
- The Giants over the Nationals: Excellent match-up between Ryan Vogelsong versus Gio Gonzalez. This will be a nail-biter. Giving the edge to Vogelsong as he is pitching at home. But Gonzalez goes home in a way as he used to pitch for the A's. Ugh! Tough pick.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Rays over the Mariners: Holy cow! When is the last time the Rays have played a good team? No wonder they keep winning. Sheesh. Alex Cobb over Blake Beavan.
Games of the Day: 70-54