Whatever funk I was in about yesterday's picks being so bad was quickly erased this morning by the news going on in Watertown, Massachusetts. What an awful week it has been. Between Boston and West, Texas and lots of places in between, one seriously bad story after another has pummeled us and made baseball and those of us that report it, irrelevant. Writing about baseball has become like the band continuing to play while the Titanic was sinking. My heart goes out to all involved in tragedy this week.
But baseball does continue on and so do the picks. It is what we do. Friday's picks:
- The Braves over the Pirates: Wandy Rodriguez is back for the Pirates, but I am always leery of a pitcher coming back from time off. And Tim Hudson was brilliant in his last start.
- The Dodgers over the Orioles: The Orioles are fresh off an impressive win last night as Matt Wieters walked off with a grand slam. But they face an unknown for them in Hyun-Jin Ryu. The Dodgers get an extra bat in the lineup with the DH and should score a few times against Jason Hammel.
- The Phillies over the Cardinals: Remember when Roy Halladay was an automatic pick? He might be again after his last start. But the Cardinals are not the Marlins and we will see if Mr. Halladay is indeed back. Halladay versus Holliday is always one of the rare treats. Jaime Garcia goes for the Cards and is riskier when not pitching at home.
- The Blue Jays over the Yankees: A sore backed Andy Pettitte is a bit of a risk on Toronto's fake grass. But despite everything, the old guy still knows how to get out big league hitters. Brandon Morrow, though, could shut the Yankees down if he is on. The Yankees' bullpen is a bit gassed.
- The Red Sox over the Royals: Things will be quite emotional as the Red Sox head back home. Not only is it their first time home since that awful day, but David Ortiz will be back in the lineup. Clay Buchholz has been terrific. He has a tough competitor though in James Shields.
- The Reds over the Marlins: Mat Latos should have no problem with Miami's offense. After all, nobody else has. And the Reds should have a third straight double-digit run score off of Kevin Slowey and those who come after him.
- The Bay Rays over the Athletics: The Rays did have a tough loss last night. But going back home might help. Having Alex Cobb pitch at home might help too. The A's are a bit banged up, but are still a very good team. Brett Anderson could shut the Rays offense down and make this pick look a bit stupid. Yeah, like that has never happened before.
- The Mets over the Nationals: Okay, the Nats can finally use Stephen Strasburg the way they want and as much as they want and the big guy simply has not been the same pitcher so far this year. Meanwhile, Matt Harvey has been lights out and is an especially good pick at home.
- The Rangers over the Mariners: Joe Saunders can baffled you some times. But he can get killed some times too. Texas is not a good place for him to pitch. But who knows. This much can be said: he is not Hisashi Iwakuma. The Japanese pitcher that is starting tonight is Yu Darvish.
- The Cubs over the Brewers: The Cubs have me totally baffled. I might have picked three of their two weeks worth of games correctly to this point. I pick against Jeff Samardzija and he wins. I do pick him to win and he loses. The Cubs have done that to me all season. Well, here we go again with Samardzija. Marco Estrada goes for the Brewers.
- The Astros over the Indians: Okay. Hear me out on this one. Lucas Harrell is not a bad pitcher. Yes, he is off to a bad start. But he is not that bad. Plus, he is right-handed and the Indians have been hitting lefties better so far. Plus, the Astros are at home and the Indians lose the DH. This pick is a gamble. But it is a good one. Did I mention that Brett Myers was pitching for the Indians?
- The White Sox over the Twins: Vance Worley was better for the Twins in his last start. But Jake Peavy is better. The offenses are about the same. This pick is about Peavy and the White Sox as the home team.
- The Rockies over the Diamondbacks: The D-Backs had to play extra innings and then fly across the country to play in Denver. The Rockies have been pounding the ball and this game does not look good for Ian Kennedy's stuff. Jhoulys Chacin should have a better time of it.
- The Tigers over the Angels: There seems to be a pall over this Angels team so far. Boy, have they been bad. The Tigers are playing well and Anibal Sanchez pitching well is one of the reasons. Tommy Hanson is not that frightening for the Tigers.
And the Game of the Day!
Week: 32-28 blah
Games of the Day: 12-6 c'mon now