You would think on a day that a game picker picked the Astros to beat the Braves would be a good day. But no. Despite that brilliant pick, far too many others were subverted by bad bullpen work or simple lack of logic on the picker's part to make it anything more than an 8-7 day. Blah! On the one hand, the return of the superstar, Roy Halladay, was brilliantly picked while the total humbling of the Yankees by Felix Hernandez was not. That's the kind of day it was. Oh, and MLB.com, just because Joe Mauer absolutely ruined the Boston pick, doesn't mean that he "crushed" that three-run homer. It was a pop fly just over the Green Monster. It was much more Bucky Dent than a bomb.
Oh well. It is a new week and a fresh weekly slate again. Here are Sunday's picks:
- The Tigers over the Indians: The Indians have become terrible. Really terrible. Max Scherzer should look good against this bunch. And it doesn't matter much how well Chris Seddon's return to the majors looks.
- The Yankees over the Mariners: There is always a pit in the stomach when seeing that it is Freddy Garcia's turn in the rotation. Ugh. But still going with the Yankees at home with Hisashi Iwakuma being lefty and all.
- The Reds over the Pirates: The Reds are the better team. That is the sad reality we've learned from this weekend and no amount of rooting for the little guys is going to change that fact. It is a big game for the Pirates to salvage one and they have A.J. Burnett on the mound with this 13-3 record. But Burnett and pressure games are historically evil. Going with Homer Bailey instead.
- The Phillies over the Diamondbacks: It is possible for Trevor Cahill to have a terrific day and shut down the Phillies. But it is much more likely that Cliff Lee will have a terrific day and shut down the D-backs.
- The Braves over the Astros: The miracle pick of the Astros yesterday was a one time thing. Predicting that it would happen again today would be silly despite the fact that Bud Norris is capable of a big game and Kris Medlan is still a bit of a wild card in the rotation.
- The Nationals over the Marlins: To think Stephen Strasburg would have two bad starts in a row would be a huge stretch. Especially not with the Marlins' lineup. Ricky Nolasco will be the hard luck loser.
- The Twins over the Red Sox: Is this picker really picking Nick Blackburn? No. This picker is picking against a Franklin Morales start when the Red Sox bullpen is toast. It's just not the Red Sox' year.
- The White Sox over the Angels: Dan Haren scares this picker with all his injuries of late. They already skipped his turn once. What will happen today? Francisco Liriano gets a fresh start on life with the White Sox. He was one of the few deadline deal pitchers that pitched well his first time out with his new team.
- The Rangers over the Royals: Sooner or later, Derek Holland is going to look studly again. Today might as well be that day. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Luke Hochevar starts for the Royals.
- The Giants over the Rockies: The Rockies have no idea who is going to start the game today. There is a TBO where the pitcher is supposed to be. What a mess. Tim Lincecum has been better of late. Not sure how that translates to Coors, but there it is.
- The Mets over the Padres: Can't believe that Matt Harvey's turn in the rotation is back up again. Is that right? He has been very impressive and should have no problem with the Padres if indeed he is pitching. Jason Marquis can BABIP you to death depending on the day.
- The Athletics over the Blue Jays: This series has been confusing and this picker has failed to pick the first two games correctly. Tommy Milone at home seems like the safer pick than Aaron Laffey and the Blue Jays' bullpen.
- The Dodgers over the Cubs: Justin Germano has a nice ERA this season. But his history in Dodgers Stadium is not good. Meanwhile, Joe Blanton gets his first start as a Dodger. First starts by traded pitchers have been conspicuously unsuccessful this season. Perhaps Blanton will buck the trend.
- The Cardinals over the Brewers: It's never a good thing when the Brewers have not won a game this series and have the win-less Marco Estrada on the mound to finish the series. Kyle Lohse is fairly reliable.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Bay Rays over the Orioles: A Yankees' split in their series along with the split in this one means that no movement has happened in the standings since both series began. That might tip today if the Yankees cannot beat the Mariners as David Price is going to stifle the Orioles and there won't be much Miguel Gonzalez will be able to do about it.
Last Week: 56-45
Games of the Day: 66-50