Two things yesterday kept it from being a great day and caused it to become just a decent day. The first was Josh Hamilton's home run in the ninth inning. I would have let Adam Wainwright finish the game. But hindsight is always 20/20. The second was that crazy game between the Mets and the Diamondbacks. My pick in that game had multiple chances to win and after fifteen innings (of course it was extra innings!) could not. Still, it was a very enjoyable day of baseball with day games galore.
There is only one day game today as the Cubs play their traditional home day game on Friday. Here are Friday's picks:
- The Cubs over the Pirates: So let's go with those Cubbies then with Jeff Samardzija on the mound. He can shut down the Pirates' lineup and perhaps score two or three runs off of Francisco Liriano to squeak out a win. It is a stretch, but the Pirates will be tested before this year is out.
- The Phillies over the Braves: The Braves are so unpredictable. With a lineup that is either hit or miss and a pitching staff that cannot seem to put back to back good efforts on the board, how do you pick them? Today, against Cliff Lee, the team has neutral splits against right-handed or left-handed starters. They will either hit four homers off Lee and have a laugher, or Lee will strike out eleven Braves and win the game. You choose. Tim Hudson goes for the Braves.
- The Yankees over the Orioles: It all depends on Ivan Nova. As usual, you never know what will happen in a Nova or a Hughes start. The bullpen for the Yankees is a bit taxed, but Vernon Wells and Travis Hafner look back from the dead. Miguel Gonzalez goes for the Orioles.
- The Indians over the Tigers: It seems logical to pick Justin Masterson over Rick Porcello, especially with the game being played in Cleveland. But since when did logic have anything to do with the outcome of baseball games?
- The Blue Jays over the Twins: How many times has Mark Buehrle pitched against the Twins in his career? A bunch. How about 51 times? Yeah. His winning percentage in those games is .587. You have to go with that. Kevin Correia goes for the Twins who were just swept in four games by the Yankees.
- The Bay Rays over the White Sox: The Rays are definitely not the same team without Evan Longoria. But Jeremy Hellickson has done nothing but win lately and Dylan Axelrod is just okay as a starter.
- The Reds over the Mariners: If I picked Mike Leake yesterday over Matt Cain and the Giants, then I certainly should pick him over Aaron Harang of the Mariners, right? The Mariners lose a bat against the NL team and the Mariners cannot afford to lose bats.
- The Rangers over the Astros: I just noticed that I have not picked a road victory yet. That is kind of scary. Home field does make a difference, but you also have to go with the team you think should win. The Rangers should beat the Astros just about every time. Nick Tepesch is not that great. Lucas Harrell is not that bad.
- The Athletics over the Royals: And no, I did not pick this game this way just because it was a road team. Heh. Tommy Milone is unpredictable. He is certainly not untouchable. But Wade Davis should be a relief pitcher as he has never been that great a starter.
- The Marlins over the Cardinals: Okay, hear me out. The Cardinals have hit a little rough patch. Jake Westbrook is their weakest pitcher. The Marlins have been hot. Logan Morrison and Giancarlo Stanton have made a huge difference. And finally, Jacob Turner has given up two runs and just walked two batters in his last sixteen innings.
- The Mets over the Brewers: I am not keen on picking this one as you have two raw pitchers in Zack Wheeler and Johnny Hellweg. Wheeler has at least shown flashes of brilliance. Hellweg was blasted in his big league debut his last outing.
- The Diamondbacks over the Rockies: In everything that I look at, it seems that Tyler Skaggs has simply been unlucky thus far this year both in the minors and in the majors. His peripherals are good and the Diamondbacks would be stupid to trade him for Yovani Gallardo which is the rumors I am hearing. I am taking Skaggs over Jorge De La Rosa.
- The Angels over the Red Sox: What!? The Red Sox are not at Fenway? Not only are they not at home, but the Red Sox flew across country after their game yesterday and have little rest going into this series. Plus, Felix Doubront is their must vulnerable pitcher. C.J. Wilson better have a good tame, though.
- The Giants over the Dodgers: The Giants had a horrible road trip and have played poorly. That said, Matt Cain at home is always a good pick. Hyun-jin Ryu beat the Giants the last time these two teams met, but that was in Dodgers Stadium.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Nationals over the Padres: The Padres have lost six straight and have negated that little hot streak they had. The Nationals look like they are sputtering toward making a run. Gio Gonzalez has tobe the pick here over Andrew Cashner.
Games of the Day: 56-37