Tuesday was not a great day and just barely broke on the positive side of .500. But at least it was a darned sight better than the previous day which was a disaster. Even so, things like Wily Peralta out-dueling Matt Cain and James Shields being totally terrible were complete surprises. And while it cost me a pick, congrats go out to Andrew Albers who pitched eight and a third scoreless innings for his first major league win. Way to go, kid.
In a day of aces pitching, I correctly backed Justin Verlander, Yu Darvish and Mat Latos. But I also incorrectly backed Felix Hernandez, Clayton Kershaw and Cain. I did correctly not back Hiroki Kuroda.
- The Reds over the Athletics: The one problem with the A's is that tough pitching will stop them. Latos did it last night and Homer Bailey will do it tonight. The only hesitation is that it seems Aroldis Chapman gives up at least one run with every outing lately. Bartolo Colon goes for the A's.
- The Orioles over the Padres: The Orioles have to win consistently to stay relevant as they have fallen pretty far off the pace. That means guys like Miguel Gonzalez have to pitch well. He should in San Diego and win over Eric Stults.
- The Mariners over the Blue Jays: J.A. Happ has not pitched in the big leagues since early May. This series has gone back and forth and it would be such a typical thing this season if the Blue Jays manage to beat Felix Hernandez one night and lose to Aaron Harang the next.
- The Nationals over the Braves: Kris Medlen has allowed four or more runs to score in five of his last eight outings. If he does that, Jordan Zimmermann wins because he will not allow more than two in this game. There could be some fireworks after last night's Harper incident.
- The Tigers over the Indians: The Indians sure lost a chance to pick up ground in this series. Danny Salazar was terrific in his first start, but I think the Tigers will get to him for a couple of runs early and then Doug Fister will do the rest.
- The Pirates over the Marlins: Tom Koehler has been pitching pretty well for the Marlins and pitched a scoreless six innings his last time out. But he did allow ten base runners, so that is flirting with problems. He will not be as good away from home. But that leaves me to pick Charlie Morton again. Yikes!
- The Mets over the Rockies: It is Matt Harvey Day and that is always an event. As always, Harvey's outcome will depend on if the Mets can score some runs. Jhoulys Chacin will be hard for the Mets to do that. But with his stuff, how can you ever pick against Harvey?
- The Red Sox over the Astros: Ryan Dempster has done nothing to show that he should be in the Red Sox' rotation as of late. But he is facing the Astros and should not be that bad. Jarred Cosart is a good little pitcher, but the Red Sox are just too powerful.
- The Twins over the Royals: I have been doing just fine picking Samuel Deduno the past month or so. He has been pitching really well. Danny Duffy will again try to establish himself in the Majors. Duffy has always had a great arm. But from his minor league numbers, still has not figured out the command issues.
- The White Sox over the Yankees: CC Sabathia has been terrible and seven runs a game seems to be his norm these days. Hector Santiago should not scare anyone, but the Yankees cannot score. Am I overly down on the Yankees? Possibly.
- The Cardinals over the Dodgers: I have not gotten any of the games of this series correctly. So why start now? Shelby Miller versus Ricky Nolasco is a decent match-up. But again, my rule is that when the pitchers seem to cancel each other out, go with the home team or the better offense. The Cards offer both.
- The Diamondbacks over the Rays: The D-backs are coming alive here lately and are getting more consistent pitching. Randall Delgado has been terrific for over a month now. Chris Archer can be very good too. But I am going with the D-backs.
- The Rangers over the Angels: Tommy Hanson just fired his agent, Scott Boros. But that will not mask the fact that Hanson's stuff has deteriorated since his early days with the Braves. I really like Ian Kinsler batting third. That was a great idea. Alexi Ogando has not been as dominating in his outings this year. That is a bit scary.
- The Giants over the Brewers: It simply is not healthy to pick against Madison Bumgarner on a regular basis. I think he will shut down the Brewers completely and give his team the opportunity to score a couple against Marco Estrada.
And the Game of the Day:
- The Phillies over the Cubs: Cole Hamels will try again to get a victory. He pitched superbly in his last outing only for Papelbon to blow his save in spectacular fashion. Travis Wood is a pretty decent pitcher for the Cubs though.
Games of the Day: 74-48 -1