Friday, July 09, 2010

Pregame.com is Dead

Recap:

Today:

Equation of the Day:

Sports Wagering: MLB

National League

Braves (-125) @ Mets with a total of 7.5; T. Hudson vs. M. Pelfrey;
Gregor Blanco was 4-for-11 off Pelfrey before 2010;
Chipper Jones was 6-for-18 with 2 HR and 3 RBI off Pelfrey before 2010;
Brian McCann was 12-for-27 with a HR and 7 RBI off Pelfrey before 2010;
Martin Prado was 4-for-9 off Pelfrey before 2010;
Jason Bay was 5-for-13 with a HR and 3 RBI off Hudson before 2010.
This line is awfully strong in favor of the Braves, isn't it? Pelfrey has absolutely slowed over his last 4-5 starts, but he's pitched well against the Braves twice already this year. One has to wonder if his arm just needs some time off. Hudson just continues to roll along, not getting much in the way of run support recently, but that 2.44 ERA this year and lifetime 3.77 ERA against the Mets and 10-5 record all point to Hudson having more success this afternoon.
Leans: Braves-3

Cubs @ Dodgers (-155) with a total of 8.5; T. Gorzelanny vs. J. Ely;
Rafael Furcal was 5-for-9 with 2 RBI off Gorzelanny before 2010.
This one looks like an insane mismatch, based on the previous meeting between these two teams. When Gorzelanny faced the Dodgers, LA creamed the soft-tosser for 7 runs over 5 innings. Ely lost to Ted Lilly, but went 7 innings of 1-run ball, so it doesn't get a ton better than that. Ely, of course, is coming off a rough start against the Marlins, but given he's a finesse guy, the Marlins' success was no surprise. I won't bet a home RL, so it's Dodgers on the ML or nothing, and I just wish the price wasn't so high, considering how games between these 2 teams are usually pretty low-scoring, especially in LA.
Leans: Dodgers-2

Reds @ Phillies (-215) with a total of 7.5; T. Wood vs. R. Halladay;
Tough to really put a finger on any one particular great play in this one. Travis Wood we don't know a ton about, and Halladay is a beast, but actually has an ERA near 4 against the Reds lifetime. He allowed 4 runs in 8 innings on 13 hits 2 weeks ago, though he was burned by the home run ball, and struck out 10, so it wasn't like he was struggling. I'm not a huge fan of this game, at all. Just watch and take some notes on young Travis Wood.
Leans: None

Giants (-125) @ Nationals with a total of 8.5; J. Sanchez vs. C. Stammen;
Not really enough historical data to put together a good player-matchup perspective on this one. Sanchez is 1-1 with a 3.45 ERA against the Nationals, so not bad, and Adam Dunn is just 1-for-7 off the hard-throwing southpaw. Stammen is 0-0 with a 4.38 ERA against the Giants, and I would offer the note that the way I feel about this game depends largely on how the series opener goes between Cain and Strasburg. If the Giants bats stay hot, it's tough to go against them. Stammen's work against SF did get a little shot in the arm with a decent start in San Francisco in late May, so that throws a tiny wrench into things.
Leans: Giants-1

Cardinals @ Astros (-125) with a total of 9; J. Suppan vs. B. Myers;
Matt Holliday was 6-for-10 with 2 HR and 4 RBI off Myers before 2010;
Aaron Miles was 5-for-12 with an RBI off Myers before 2010;
Skip Schumaker was 6-for-13 with 2 HR off Myers before 2010;
Lance Berkman is 7-for-17 with a HR and 2 RBI off Suppan since '05;
Pedro Feliz is 8-for-20 with a HR and 5 RBI off Suppan since '05;
Hunter Pence is 4-for-13 with 2 HR and 3 RBI off Suppan.
This line is all kinds of amazing. The Houston Astros are a -125 favorite to the Cardinals? This is actually the biggest favorite price that Myers has had at any point all season long, short of being a -145 home favorite to the Pirates and Charlie Morton. Oddsmakers aren't so crazy that they'd set this line here unless they knew darn well the Astros were going to get some money. Suppan is 3-7 with a 5.00 ERA lifetime against the Astros, and has not looked strong this year, barely going 5 innings in most starts. Myers has pitched well against the Cards already this season, but hasn't had much to show for it. Tonight, he might.
Leans: Astros-4

Pirates @ Brewers (-200) with a total of 9.5; J. Karstens vs. D. Bush;
Ryan Braun is 3-for-8 with a HR and 2 RBI off Karstens;
There aren't really any numbers that jump out on either side, in terms of betting a total. The Brewers pitching has been pretty ugly, and the Pirates are, well, the Pirates. Karstens has been mostly consistently mediocre, and Bush, likewise. The value is definitely on the underdog, considering the Brewers look like they're going to be one of the first teams to just pack it in for 2010, but I don't suggest going that route unless you've got a bankroll like LeBron.
Leans: None

Marlins @ D'backs (-135) with a total of 10.5; N. Robertson vs. I. Kennedy;
Ian Kennedy looks like he's getting tired. That's the most important note in this one. He built up some credibility with the public with a strong start to the season, and followed it up with a strong May. He started to slip a little in June, and now has been crashing and burning heading into July. I wouldn't back him until after the break. Robertson is consistently crummy, but at least you generally know what you're going to get. He's 0-1 with a 3.65 ERA against the D'backs in his career, but most of these guys have seen little of him. I expect the Marlins to score quite a few in this one, and both the dog and the over are on the table.
Leans: Marlins-3, Over-1

Padres @ Rockies (-165) with a total of 9; W. LeBlanc vs. J. Hammel;
David Eckstein was 3-for-8 off Hammel before 2010;
Tony Gwynn Jr. was 3-for-8 off Hammel before 2010;
Nick Hundley is 4-for-7 with a HR off Hammel before 2010;
Matt Stairs is 5-for-8 with 2 HR and 4 RBI off Hammel before 2010.
REMATCH ALERT! LeBlanc gave up 3 runs in 6.1 innings on just 2 hits when he faced the Rockies in San Diego a couple weeks ago, but lost, somehow. The Rockies won that game 6-3, as Hammel gave up 3 runs in 6 innings. Neither guy is outrageously good against the other team, which makes me think this price tag might be a tad on the high side. Still, Hammel is more accustomed to pitching in Coors, and that might make all the difference.
Leans: None

American League

Red Sox @ Blue Jays (-125) with a total of 9; J. Lackey vs. B. Morrow;
Alex Gonzalez is 4-for-11 off Lackey;
Adam Lind is 4-for-6 with an RBI off Lackey.
This line makes very little sense to me. I know Morrow had himself a spectacular June, but he's coming back to Earth, and his career work against the Red Sox is a bit on the poor side. He had his worst start of 2010 against the Sox, and even though Boston is banged up and generally don't play all that well in Canada, to make them a dog is head-scratching. Lackey has been pitching alright of late - not great, not bad, but also had a bad effort against these Jays earlier this year. He's been solid against the Jays in his career, though, so I wonder if that wasn't the fluke. The strength of this line for the home team speaks volumes, though, and I won't fight the oddsmakers when the Sox or Yanks are involved.
Leans: Blue Jays-1

Twins @ Tigers (-155) with a total of 9.5; N. Blackburn vs. J. Bonderman;
Joe Mauer was batting .348 off Bonderman with a HR and 2 RBI before 2010;
Jim Thome was 6-for-18 with 3 HR off Bonderman between '05 and '09;
Delmon Young was 4-for-9 off Bonderman before 2010;
Miguel Cabrera was 6-for-15 with a HR and 6 RBI off Blackburn before 2010;
Magglio Ordonez was 4-for-10 off Blackburn before 2010.
Blackburn has actually been better against Detroit than probably any other team, this year, but how long can that success really last? He gave up 3 runs in a complete game win back in early May, then gave up 4 runs in 7 innings of an 11-4 blowout win against the Tigers 2 weeks ago. Bonderman has only faced Minnesota once this year, and allowed 4 runs on 9 hits and 3 walks in just 5.1 innings, but that was enough for a win. He's 4-6 with a 5.40 ERA lifetime against the Twinkies, and Bonderman is coming off a very ugly outing against the Mariners, where he seemingly got squeezed by the home plate ump, then got tossed. It's a bounceback spot against one of the worst road pitchers in the League.
Leans: Tigers-1

Royals @ White Sox (-205) with a total of 9; B. Bannister vs. G. Floyd;
DOUBLE REMATCH ALERT! Sadly, it's not a double revenge, though. These two pitchers have faced off twice already this year, so we'll forgo the player numbers in favor of some numbers from 2010. It's also the 4th time each has faced the other team. Bannister is very, very bad against the White Sox. His starts this year against them have been 7 runs in 3 innings, 3 runs in 6 innings, and 4 runs in 4 innings, and that last one could have been worse. He has a 7.97 career ERA against the White Sox. Floyd's 4 starts have followed a very Floyd-like progression. He gave up 6 runs in 6.1 innings, 5 runs in 6 innings, and then just 3 runs (2 earned) in 6.2 innings. Floyd has never been great against KC, so there's definitely some value on the underdog if Bannister can keep this one within reach. Still, both bullpens have been solid. The thing that jumps out at me is that the last meeting had a total of 8.5 and ended with a 4-3 final, yet this one is a half run higher?
Leans: Over-3

Indians @ Rays (-250) with a total of 9; A. Laffey vs. M. Garza;
Jhonny Peralta is 8-for-17 with an RBI off Garza.
Matt Garza doesn't really like the Indians, interestingly. Remember, he was with the Twinkies for a bit, and managed to begin what has become a rough career against Cleveland. Garza is 1-4 with a 5.59 ERA against the Indians, though only Peralta has really hit him hard. Aaron Laffey is pretty bad, so I'm not necessarily saying the Indians are going to win this one, but it's not as lopsided as the line might indicate. Just be careful, here.
Leans: None

Orioles @ Rangers with a total of N/A; C. Tillman vs. C. Lee;
Well, howdy! Cliff Lee, traded to the Rangers, is up and running just moments later. I wouldn't touch this game with someone else's money, no matter the line. If you need reasons why, how about line inflation, compounded by the fact that the Orioles actually have a chance. Who knows how Lee is going to perform in his first start for a new team in a very hot city. We saw him dominate in his last move, but there's way too much risk involved in a play on or against him.
Leans: None

Angels @ Athletics (-127) with a total of 8.5; S. Kazmir vs. B. Sheets;
Coco Crisp is batting .300 in 30 AB off Kazmir.
REMATCH ALERT! Kazmir actually pitched extremely well against the A's earlier this year, beating Ben Sheets 4-2. He's 9-3 with a 2.85 ERA lifetime against Oakland, and while I'd love to just keep fading him, the way the Angels have owned the A's makes me very nervous about that. Ben Sheets has been about as predictable as any human can be. He's going to go 6-7 innings and give up 3-5 runs, likely closer to 3 if his opponent is slumping (which the Angels are). Kazmir might give up 7 runs in 5 innings, he might give up 1 run in 5 innings, but he probably won't go any deeper in the game than that, and I happen to believe the A's are marginal favorites in this one because they actually get a few runs in against Kazmir's decomposing left arm.
Leans: Athletics-2

Yankees @ Mariners with a total of N/A; J. Vazquez vs. F. Hernandez;
There's no line on this one just yet, thanks to all the shuffling of pitchers, but I would imagine these guys will take their scheduled spot in the rotation. If so...REMATCH ALERT! Felix beat Javy in New York a couple weeks back by the final score of 7-0. The King has been rolling, too, and even though the Mariners found a way to lose his last start, it really wasn't for lack of effort. Felix was on a stretch of 4 straight starts of at least 8.2 innings (3 complete games), then his last outing was a 7-inning, 2-run performance against the Royals. One of those complete games came against these Yankees, and I'm honestly a tad afraid of what New York might do when they face Seattle in this one. The Mariners just shipped off their best player, and are expected to keep playing hard going into the All Star Break? Sounds like a tough proposal, and I feel for their manager, Don Wakamatsu.
Leans: Yankees-1

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