Saturday, June 13, 2015

MLB Game Picks - Saturday: June 13, 2015

With a 10-5 final tally yesterday, I had a good day except, the Pick of the Day was wrong again as the Diamondbacks beat Madison Bumgarner, 1-0. Sheesh. Of the four other wrong picks, one was Felix Hernandez not making it out of the first inning against the Astros. Say what!? Michael Pineda was totally gruesome against the Orioles. And, of course, I again could not count on Jordan Zimmermann. I am wondering about the health of Pineda and Hernandez too as that is the second time in his last four outings that he has been pulverized.
Saturday's picks:
  • The Red Sox over the Blue Jays: This pick assumes a couple of things. First, it assumes that the Red Sox get to R.A. Dickey. I have run into trouble predicting that before. Secondly, it assumes that Clay Buchholz is back to form and will pitch well. Lastly, it assumes that winning streaks have to end some time.
  • The Rangers over the Twins: The Twins are starting to come back to earth and the Rangers are really playing well. Colby Lewis and Mike Pelfrey seems like a draw of starting pitchers, so the better offense and home team should win.
  • The Indians over the Tigers: At long last, Justin Verlander again takes the mound for the Tigers. He will not go deep in the game and the Tigers' bullpen is suspect. Plus, Carlos Carrasco has the ability to shut down the Tigers.
  • The Mets over the Braves: It all depends on Jacob deGrom. If he is good, the Mets win. if not, then Shelby Lewis is also a very good pitcher. How are the Mets winning? Did you see their lineup last night? It's a head scratcher.
  • The Rays over the White Sox: I can never trust Jeff Samardzija and Chris Archer has become one of the best pitchers in the AL. The Rays continue to win with mirrors while the White Sox continue to flounder around.
  • The Rockies over the MarlinsDavid Hale has been surprisingly efficient in this his latest MLB incarnation. Mat Latos is just off the injury list and those things always bother me because of pitch limits and rust.
  • The Cardinals over the Royals: I don't know why the Cardinals always go back to the same guy when someone gets hurt. But Tyler Lyons again gets the call. Even if Lyons is moderately successful, I think the Cards win as they get to Jeremy Guthrie because they are willing to go to the opposite field. But if Lyons totally sucks, look out.
  • The Astros over the MarinersMike Montgomery has pitched two great games for the Mariners and has nothing to show for it. It would be great for him to get his first MLB win. But I think he will again be thwarted as Collin McHugh shuts down the Mariners.
  • The Brewers over the Nationals: It would be nice for the Nats if someone besides Bryce Harper would start swinging the bat. If the Nats lose, they fall to .500. Not good. Joe Ross goes for the Nats and Jimmy Nelson for the Brewers.
  • The Diamondbacks over the Giants: I have always been a big believer in Allen Webster. He is getting his chance for the D-backs tonight and I think he can thrive in a less pressure situation than Boston. He has to keep the walks down though. Ryan Vogelsong is always pretty tough at home.
  • The Cubs over the Reds: I like Kyle Hendricks and I like the Cubs chances against Mike Leake. So that's the pick.
  • The Orioles over the Yankees: The Yankees have handled Bud Norris in the past. But I don't trust CC Sabathia against a good lineup like the Orioles.
  • The Angels over the AthleticsKendall Graveman has pitched better of late and should be solid tonight. But the fact remains that the A's do not hit lefties well and C.J. Wilson is certainly that. The A's sink deeper into the AL West hole.
  • The Dodgers over the PadresZack Greinke has had two sub par outings in a row, but I'm guessing he'll break out of that tonight. Ian Kennedy is just not somebody I feel comfortable picking...ever.
And the Pick of the Day:
  • The Pirates over the Phillies: Both bullpens will be a little gassed, so it will be important for the starters to go deep. I think Gerrit Cole becomes a ten-game winner in this one with Sean O'Sullivan getting the short end.
Yesterday: 10-5, June: 83-76, Season: 461-429, Picks of the Day: 35-31 (-2)

Friday, June 12, 2015

MLB Game Picks - Friday: June 12, 2015

I picked terribly yesterday. Picture the old knight in the Indiana Jones movie: "He chose...poorly."  Yes, I did. Looking back, I picked way too many visiting teams to win. No matter how bad a team is, home is always an advantage. According to, home teams win 53.4 percent of the time. That is a pretty significant difference. So if I pick six out of nine visiting teams to win, then I am setting myself up for disaster. And disaster it was.
Let's see if I learned anything. Friday's picks:
  • The Cubs over the Reds: Heh. Now I am all messed up because I don't want to pick Johnny Cueto because he is not at home. Jason Hammel is pitching very well for the Cubs though and that's my pick.
  • The Yankees over the Orioles: I am now worried about the Yankees' bullpen with their closer on the DL. So although I like Michael Pineda much more than Ubaldo Jimenez, the pick has me big time worried.
  • The Pirates over the Phillies: It never ceases to amaze me that Kevin Correia somehow always manages to find a job in baseball. But he's back. I will go with Jeff Locke though. Which is my point.
  • The Tigers over the Indians: Two very good pitchers square up here in David Price and Danny Salazar. I give the edge to Price because he will go deeper into the game.
  • The Mets over the Braves: If Bartolo Colon was pitching on the road, I would take the Braves here because Alex Wood is very good at preventing runs. But at home, Colon can seem to have some really good moments.
  • The Rays over the White Sox: This pick is not so much a support of Matt Andriese, though he did pitch well against the Yankees. Rather, it is my long distrust of John Danks as a Major League pitcher.
  • The Marlins over the Rockies: of these pitchers has to win. Kyle Kendrick is not somebody I ever like to pick. But, Jose Urena hasn't exactly been lighting it up for the Marlins either. Ick. Christian Yelich appears to be over his slump. That helps.
  • The Blue Jays over the Red Sox: The Red Sox starting pitching continues to be a problem and I don't see Joe Kelly being able to stop the steamrolling Blue Jays. The key is Drew Hutchison having a good night though.
  • The Rangers over the Twins: Is it just me or doesn't it seem that Wandy Rodriguez pitches every other day for the Rangers? I'm not that big on picking him. But Tommy Milone doesn't seem any more appetizing.
  • The Mariners over the Astros: You always have to pick Felix Hernandez. The guy is having a phenomenal season. That seems like a much smarter play than Brett Oberholtzer.
  • The Nationals over the Brewers: The Nats offense is still a bit of a sputter outfit. Getting Denard Span back helps. Jordan Zimmermann is hard to count on lately. Mike Fiers can't seem to find last year's magic.
  • The Cardinals over the RoyalsJaime Garcia traditionally pitches well at home. Yordano Ventura has a history of hitting Cardinal players so that bad blood will need to be watched. This rivalry has become must-see baseball.
  • The Angels over the Athletics: One of the few picks from yesterday that worked out. I'm not a big fan of Hector Santiago. But he is pitching better this year than Jesse Chavez.
  • The Dodgers over the PadresClayton Kershaw is hitting his stride and I don't think tonight will be different. Odrisamer Despaigne has not been very good.
And the Pick of the Day:
Yesterday: 3-6, June: 73-71, Season: 451-424, Picks of the Day: 35-30

Thursday, June 11, 2015

MLB Game Picks - Thursday: June 11, 2015

I had a much better day yesterday finishing at 9-6 with a correct Pick of the Day. As pretty good as it was, the day would have been far sweeter if the Yankees and Rangers hadn't had bullpen letdowns and blown their games. But that's the way it goes. The Blue Jays kept winning and the Tigers kept losing. What a weird season.
Thursday's picks:
  • The Braves over the Padres: The Braves have been surprisingly good and the Padres surprisingly bad. I imagine Bud Black has a pretty warm fanny right now as the Padres went all in with salary this season. Today won't help Black's cause as Julio Teheran is going to be better than Andrew Cashner.
  • The Indians over the Mariners: This is set up nicely for an Indians they need pretty badly at this point.  Shaun Marcum isn't great, but he's been pretty good. The Indians are at home and only have to face J.A. Happ.
  • The Rangers over the Athletics: This pick was correct for eight innings yesterday (frown). Chi Chi Gonzalez has been spectacular for the Rangers. Scott Kazmir has been up and down.
  • The Orioles over the Red SoxAdam Jones has been a game changer. And his cohorts have turned it on a bit. Chris Tillman has been better as of late. And I think the Orioles will jump on Wade Miley.
  • The Rockies over the Marlins: The Marlins are now 8-14 under Dan Jennings as manager. Yeesh. David Phelps has not pitched that great lately and Chris Rusin has been terrific for the Rockies thus far.
  • The Angels over the Rays: The one weak spot for the Rays in the last couple of weeks has been when Alex Colome pitches. He just hasn't kept up with his rotation mates. Garrett Richards needs to bounce back from his loss to the Yankees and I think he will.
  • The Giants over the Mets: The Mets have gone 8-13 over their last 21 games and are 3-6 in June. They are now only two games above .500 and have seemed to hit a wall. Jon Niese hasn't been up to his standards and Tim Lincecum is quietly having a nice season.
  • The Reds over the Cubs: Michael Lorenzen has been great for the Reds (if you overlook his walks) and Tsuyoshi Wada hasn't given anything to the Cubs. In other words, it has been nada from Wada.
And the Pick of the Day:
  • The Nationals over the Brewers: That comeback win for the Nats made a big difference yesterday. Tanner Roark has gotten his feet firmer planted on the starting end of things and the Nats should hit Matt Garza pretty well. This seems too obvious...uh oh.
Yesterday: 9-6, June: 70-65, Season: 448-418, Picks of the Day: 35-29

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

MLB Game Picks - Wednesday: June 10, 2015

I got smoked by the results yesterday. Wow. For every correct pick I had, there were two incorrect picks. Yeah, that's bad. Congrats to young Mr. Jungmann winning his first MLB start and appearance. But I did not expect you to win. Congrats Chris Heston on your no-hitter, but I picked against you. Congrats Eduardo Gonzalez on another great start. But your team couldn't score. It was a good day for rookies (if you don't count Noah Syndergaard) and a bad day for me.
Wednesday picks:
  • The Reds over the Phillies: I have no idea about this one. Jon Moscot starts for the Reds and I know very little about him. I know Jerome Williams of the Phillies and he throws an occasional good game. But Joey Votto is on fire, so I'll go with the Reds.
  • The Blue Jays over the Marlins: This is another one to throw up my hands and go, "I don't know!" Scott Copeland is an overachiever for the Blue Jays as a high round draft pick who worked quickly through the Blue Jays' system. He doesn't strike people out. The Marlins start Tom Koehler, but their team is in such disarray (besides Giancarlo Stanton) that I can't trust them. Eight in a row for the Blue Jays?
  • The Yankees over the Nationals: Speaking of eight in a row, that is what the Yankees are shooting for tonight. Nathan Eovaldi will either give them a good outing or get blown up by homers. There is no in between. Get the bullpen ready. Gio Gonzalez can be had right now.
  • The Rockies over the Cardinals: Ugh! Another tough pick. Chad Bettis has been spectacular as has Carlos Martinez. Which one cracks tonight? The Cards have some injuries right now.
  • The Orioles over the Red Sox: The Red Sox are doing slightly better against lefties lately, but are still poor overall. That's why I give the edge to Wei-Yin Chen over Rick Porcello. The Orioles are hitting again.
  • The Cubs over the TigersShane Greene is still in the Tigers' rotation after pitching terribly since the first month of the season. Not good. Meanwhile, Jake Arrieta gentille Arrieta can be very tough.
  • The Rays over the Angels: You have to tip your cap to the pitching coach of the Rays. He stayed put while everyone left and look what he has done for Erasmo Ramirez. It's quite remarkable, really. Jered Weaver remains my least favorite player in baseball. What a jerk on the field he is.
  • The Braves over the PadresTyson Ross is a very talented pitcher whose control has been his worst enemy this season. If he puts it together, this pick is toast. If not, and if Williams Perez keeps being decent, the Braves should win.
  • The Mets over the Giants: The young phenom, Matt Harvey, faces the borderline Hall of Fame pitcher, Tim Hudson. Interesting match-up. I have to go with Harvey.
  • The Mariners over the IndiansTrevor Bauer pitched great for the Indians last time they faced the Mariners last week. But he lost. Will that change tonight? It all depends on Taijuan Walker, a kid everyone has been waiting for to put it together. If he does, look out.
  • The Astros over the White SoxCarlos Correa has been fantastic thus far. And Vincent Velasquez is making his MLB debut after blowing people away in the minors since he was drafted in 2010. I like his chances tonight against the White Sox and Jose Quintana.
  • The Royals over the Twins: The Royals are just the better team here. That said, whenever I pick against Kyle Gibson, I look stupid. And picking Edinson Volquez still makes me queasy.
  • The Rangers over the Athletics: The Rangers have been really surprising to me. That being the case, I'm picking them here behind Yovani Gallardo against the A's and Jesse Hahn.
  • The Diamondbacks over the DodgersJeremy Hellickson has been on a nice roll and Brett Anderson has not been. So that's the pick.
And the Pick of the Day:
  • The Pirates over the Brewers: This pick was wrong yesterday and I hate picking Charlie Morton. But he is another pitcher I don't believe in that makes me look foolish all the time. He is 3-0 after all. Kyle Lohse goes for the Brewers.
Yesterday: 5-10 (ouch), June: 61-59, Season: 439-412, Picks of the Day: 34-29 (-2)

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

MLB Game Picks - Tuesday: June 9, 2015

I've never been fond of short schedule days. There is no margin for error and the picks can go south in a hurry. Predictably, I went 4-4 yesterday with an incorrect Pick of the Day. Chris Sale was as remarkable as I thought he would be. But I worried correctly about John Lackey, who was pounded. I enjoyed watching the draft last night except that it was drawn out to the nth degree. Wow, that was slow going!  Good luck to all those drafted.
Tuesday's picks:
  • The Red Sox over the Orioles: The Red Sox have a good one in Eduardo Rodriguez and he has certainly delivered. He faces Miguel Gonzalez who only seems dominant against the Yankees and no one else in the AL East.
  • The Pirates over the Brewers: This pick did not work out yesterday. And it seems a little iffy tonight too. Francisco Liriano is always an adventure and the Brewers are giving a MLB debut to Taylor Jungmann, the team's former #1 draft pick (2011). Jungmann has gotten bashed around a bit this year in the PCL, but that is a tough league for pitchers. Look for a lot of ground balls.
  • The Yankees over the Nationals: The Yankees have made it a habit of spanking aces this year (while losing to stiffs) and can deliver their own ace in Masahiro Tanaka. If Tanaka can keep the ball in the stadium, I think he will out-duel Max Scherzer.
  • The Blue Jays over the Marlins: I'll take Mark Buehrle at home most of the time. Besides, the Marlins have sunk like a rock since they changed managers. Dan Haren goes for the Fish.
  • The Cubs over the TigersAnibal Sanchez just doesn't seem to be himself this season. He's usually good in the first half and then fades. He's faded since April. Jon Lester knows these Tigers well (and vice versa).
  • The Rays over the Angels: The Rays just keep winning and Nate Karns has been part of that. Matt Shoemaker is capable of being tough though.
  • The Reds over the PhilliesAaron Harang might be safe enough to pick against. I will laugh if he wins though. The guy does do a number on my head. Anthony DeSclafani goes for the Reds.
  • The Padres over the Braves: I hate picking against Mike Foltynewicz, especially since I finally memorized how to spell his name. But James Shields doesn't lose.  So I have to go with him.
  • The Mets over the Giants: Two good young pitchers toil in this one and it could go either way. "Charlton" Chris Heston has been just fine for the Giants and Noah Syndergaard has shown flashes of brilliance.
  • The Astros over the White SoxCarlos Rodon is certainly capable of striking out fourteen more Astros tonight. But I have to go with Dallas Keuchel, one of my favorite pitchers in baseball.
  • The Twins over the RoyalsTrevor May has been a complete surprise to me this season as have the Twins as a whole. The Royals are tough but I am going with May over Chris Young.
  • The Rockies over the Cardinals: The Rockies, thanks to the re-emergence of Troy Tulowitzki, are flat out raking right now and at home, I think they can still do the same to Michael WachaJorge De La Rosa is the key to this game though.
  • The Athletics over the Rangers: It's a Sonny Gray day and that is enough for me, especially when he is home. The Rangers go with Nick Martinez, who has been very good himself this season.
  • The Dodgers over the DiamondbacksRobbie Ray has pitched wonderfully since his call up and has nine strikeouts to only one walk. The Dodgers are just a different team when Yasiel Puig is on the field. Carlos Frias pitches for them.
And the Pick of the Day:
  • The Indians over the Mariners: I don't care if he is just 3-6. You can't pick against Corey Kluber. I cannot say the same thing concerning Roenis Elias.
Yesterday: 4-4, June: 56-49, Season: 434-402, Picks of the Day: 34-28