Picture a middle aged guy with a ponytail dancing and singing the schmaltzy, "What a difference a day makes," song. Yes, that is what a 12-3 day will do. A day like that goes a long way in fixing everything. The month is no longer an embarrassment and in the red.
So what kept the day from being perfect? Why, of course, that would be the Cardinals. Surprise! And, once again, a pick against the Orioles ended up being stupid. Buck Showalter is Joe Maddon's Waterloo. Maddon has met his match and then some. The other bad pick was picking against the Giants, who now have the NL West pretty much wrapped up in a bow.
There are nine games on the Thursday schedule. The entire AL East is in action as they all had a day off on Monday. And that big series out in the AL West continues for one last day. The picks:
- The Bay Rays over the Orioles: Yes, yes, what did the second paragraph just say? But hear the pick out. Jeremy Hellickson has come on strong. He has a 3.91 ERA in five starts at Camden Yards, which is hardly breathtaking. But still. Wei-Yin Chen is faltering a bit and has lost two straight. These two teams are so evenly matched, the Rays have to take one of the games.
- The Athletics over the Angels: It doesn't get any easier for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on the West Coast of America in the Northern Hemisphere on Planet Earth. Brett Anderson has been awesome since coming back. And yes, Jered Weaver is coming back to pitch this one for the Angels. But how healthy is he? And can he keep the A's in the yard?
- The Mariners over the Blue Jays: Felix Hernandez. Need there be anything else said? Well, okay...he faces Henderson Alvarez. That seals it, no?
- The Yankees over the Red Sox: Joe Girardi is managing tighter than the waistband of Rush Limbaugh's undies, but the Yankees, even depleted by injuries are much better than the Red Sox. Felix Doubront has not pitched a good game in forever. Phil Hughes is the wild card. If he blows out early, this pick is left in tatters.
- The Rangers over the Indians: The same logic applies as yesterday. The Indians are no threat to the Texas Rangers. Zach McAllister will be lucky to come out of this one alive and Derek Holland will have an easy time of it.
- The Phillies over the Astros: MLB.com lists Fernando Abad as the starter for the Astros, but that's silly because he started Wednesday night. Yahoo lists Lucas Harrell, and that is another kettle of fish (cliche). This feature really loves Lucas Harrell. But there is no stopping these Phillies right now. Tyler Cloyd goes for them.
- The Royals over the Twins: Poor Liam Hendriks. The guy can't buy a win. Well, the Twins have to put him out there as there is nobody else. Luis Mendoza is somewhat more likely to win than Hendriks.
- The Cardinals over the Dodgers: Gulp! The Cardinals. [[cough]]. Lance Lynn is starting. He has been in the bullpen lately. That isn't good. But the Dodgers send out Josh Beckett. That is enough to counter the ennui of the Cardinals.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Tigers over the White Sox: This pick comes down to who to trust more, Justin Verlander or Chris Sale. That is a tough choice, no? But the Verlander angle is a much more trustworthy one. If this pick comes true, the AL Central will be tied.
Games of the Day: 91-63