New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox
MLB Pick: Over 8.5 -110 odds (April 24th 2014)
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The books have set the bar too low in this contest between the rival New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox. I look for a high-scoring affair tonight between two mediocre starting pitchers in C.C. Sabathia and Felix Doubront.
Sabathia is coming off the worst year of his career in 2013, going 14-13 with a 4.78 ERA and 1.370 WHIP in 32 starts. He hasn’t been any better thus far in 2014, going 2-2 with a 5.19 ERA through four starts. Sabathia is 10-14 with a 5.04 ERA and 1.381 WHIP in 30 career starts against Boston, including 1-2 with an 8.49 ERA in his last four starts, allowing 22 earned runs in 23 2/3 innings.
Felix Doubront is no more than a fill-in starter in this league. He has gone 1-2 with a 5.48 ERA and 1.546 WHIP in four starts this season, including 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA and 1.713 WHIP in two home starts. Doubront is 0-2 with a 9.42 ERA in his last three starts against the Yankees, allowing 15 earned runs over 14 1/3 innings.
Sabathia is 39-24 to the OVER In all games over the last three seasons. The OVER is 16-6-2 in Sabathia’s last 24 road starts with a total set of 7.0-8.5. The OVER is 10-3 in Doubront’s last 13 starts as a home favorite of -110 to -150. Bet the OVER in this game Thursday.
Baltimore Orioles vs. Toronto Blue Jays
Betting Pick: Toronto -134 odds (April 24th 2014)
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I look for the Blue Jays to bounce back at home after letting one slip away last night against the Orioles. Toronto jumped out to an early 6-1 lead, but a 6-run 5th inning for Baltimore put them on the wrong end of the scoreboard. The Blue Jays have responded well to a defeat, as they are an impressive 6-1 in their 7 games following a loss. Baltimore on the other hand is just 3-9 in their last last 12 games as a road underdog of +110 to +150 and 2-6 in their last 8 road games with a total set between 9-10.5 runs.
I also think today’s pitching matchup favors Toronto. The Blue Jays will send out Drew Hutchison, who is 1-1 with a solid 3.60 ERA over his first four starts. Hutchison also has a strong 1.00 ERA and 1.056 WHIP over 3 career starts against Baltimore. The Orioles counter with Bud Norris, who is 0-2 with a 4.42 ERA in his first three starts. Norris has been especially bad on the road. In his two starts away from home in 2014, he’s gone 0-2 with with an ugly 7.15 ERA and 1.412 WHIP.
We also find a strong system in play on Toronto. Home teams who are hitting .265 or worse as a team against a team with a starting pitcher with an ERA between 4.20 and 4.70 and overused bullpen that is averaging more than 3.2 innings/game are 126-84 since 1997. That’s a 60% system in favor of the Blue Jays!
Oakland Athletics vs. Houston Astros
Betting Pick: Houston +155 odds (April 24th 2014)
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We lost a tough one with the Astros yesterday as they blew a 3-0 and lost on a walk off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning. It was still a successful series though as Houston took two of three and head home trying get some payback following a three-game sweep at Oakland last week. Brett Oberholtzer takes the hill for the Astros and despite them going 0-4 in his four starts, he has pitched much better than that. He has only one quality start but he has not allowed more than three runs in any outing and the three that failed to miss quality status were missed by a total of an inning and a third. One of those games game in Oakland where he allowed one run in 5.2 innings but it resulted in a 4-3 loss. Look for him to continue his efficient pitching. The A’s were swept at home by Texas so they bring in very little momentum. Scott Kazmir will look to turn things around for his team and he has been outstanding to open the season. He has a 1.65 ERA and 0.77 WHIP through four starts with Oakland going 4-0 in those games thanks to all resulting in quality performances. This includes the win over Oberholtzer but I do not see this holding up. He made one start in Houston last season while with the Indians and was shelled for six runs in 3.1 innings. Play (922) Houston Astros
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