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Dodgers vs. Cardinals MLB Betting Odds & Pick from Scott Rickenbach: May 25th 2017

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. St. Louis Cardinals
MLB Betting Pick: Dodgers -139 odds (May 25th 2017)

Scott “The Bulldog” Rickenbach MLB Thursday Free Pick – Los Angeles Dodgers Money Line (-) vs St Louis Cardinals @ 10:10 ET – As long-time followers know, I don’t like to lay big prices in money line sports and am a huge proponent of underdog value. However, this spot is taking advantage of a moderate price (certainly not a huge favorite) in a situation where we have a solid pitching edge based on the match-up. While the Cardinals Michael Wacha has a much lower ERA than the Dodgers Kenta Maeda, their WHIP stats are nearly identical. In other words, Maeda has simply been a victim of some bad luck and a few big hits. The Dodgers right-hander has actually been pitching well and, particularly of late, he’s on fire on the mound! Additionally, he was rock solid against the Cardinals in his lone start against them (last season) while Wacha has been hit hard in his two most recent starts versus the Dodgers and he was fortunate more runs weren’t scored against him. Wacha gave up 18 hits in just 10 innings spanning his two starts against the Dodgers last season. Maeda allowed only 5 hits in nearly 6 innings of work against the Cards in his lone start against them last season and that outing was in St Louis. Maeda will prove even tougher to hit at home where he has a 0.99 WHIP this season.

Also, the Dodgers right-hander comes into this outing having allowed only 13 hits in the 20 and 1/3 innings spanning his last 3 starts. Wacha has a 1.50 WHIP in his road starts this season and I look for the Dodgers to bounce back after getting crushed 6-1 last night. Prior to that defeat the Dodgers had won 5 of their last 6 while the Cardinals had lost 5 of their last 6. The Cards are still just 6-9 against teams with a winning record this season and LA is still a solid 17-8 at home this year. Free Pick on Los Angeles Dodgers money line in late night Thursday action. Best of luck, Scott “The Bulldog” Rickenbach

Pirates vs. Braves Odds & Betting Pick from Larry Ness: May 24th 2017

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Atlanta Braves
MLB Betting Pick: Atlanta -122 odds (May 24th 2017)

Atlanta’s Matt Adams (acquired from St Louis just this past Saturday) delivered a walk-off single in Tuesday’s 6-5 victory, the Braves’ 10th win in their last 13 games. Pittsburgh had taken a one-run lead in the top of the ninth but Tony Watson was unable to close it out, allowing at least three hits for the fourth time in seven appearances, as Pittsburgh fell to 8-17 away from home in a crushing defeat that featured a rain delay of more than three hours. While the 20-23 Braves are inching towards the .500 mark, the 20-26 Pirates are heading in the opposite direction with losses in each of the first two of this four-game series at Atlanta’s SunTrust Park.

The pitching matchup features Trevor Williams (2-3, 6.04 ERA) and Julio Teheran (3-4, 5.47 ERA). Williams will make his fourth start after making six appearances out of the bullpen. This could be the most important of the season for Williams, who was rocked for eight runs (six earned) over three innings in his first start (May 8) but has pitched better in his last two, working five innings of one-run ball at Arizona and 5.2 innings of three-run ball vs Philadelphia. Williams could be in danger of losing his role to Jameson Taillon, who has been out after undergoing surgery for testicular cancer. Taillon threw a 25-pitch bullpen session on Tuesday and moved a step closer to being reactivated.

Atlanta’s move to SunTrust Park has not made for an easy tradition for Julio Teheran. He had always pitched well at Turner Field but he’s 1-4 with a bloated 10.24 ERA at Atlanta’s new stadium, as opposed to a 2-0 mark and minuscule 0.71 ERA in four road starts. He was battered for a season-worst nine runs and served up three HRs in three-plus innings in his last home start this past Thursday against Toronto. That followed a stellar outing at Miami in which he tossed six scoreless innings of three-hit ball. Teheran is 3-1 with a 3.13 ERA vs the Pirates in seven career starts (Braves are 5-2).

Teheran pitched even strong innings last month (allowed just two unearned runs on April 9th) but again, that was on the road. That said, Teheran’s home woes make little sense. He’s been Atlanta’s ace recently and I expect hime to come around here at SunTrust. As for Williams, he’s pitched 13.2 innings as a starter, allowing 12 runs (10 earned) on 15 hits, four walks and six strikeouts. I’ll go with Teheran and the Braves

MLB Pick: Will Rogers betting the Dodgers -166 odds on May 24th 2017

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
MLB Betting Pick: Dodgers -166 odds (May 24th 2017)

The set-up: Lynn and Kershaw dominated last night with LA finally prevailing 2-1 in 13 innings. The Dodgers have now won five of their last six and Tuesday’s win gives them a superb 17-7 home mark. Meanwhile, the struggling Cardinals have dropped five of their last six overall and last night, struck out 14 times and managed just four hits as they stranded only two baserunners.

The pitching matchup: Mike Leake (4-2 & 2.03 ERA) gets the nod for St. Louis and Rich Hill (1-1 & 2.77 ERA) for Los Angeles. Leake, nothing more than a journeyman, ranks second in the National League in ERA behind Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw (2.01) and also owns a stellar 0.99 WHIP. He has given up two runs or fewer in seven of his eight starts during a fine bounce-back season after compiling a career-worst 4.69 ERA last year. Leake is 4-5 with a 4.26 ERA in 10 career appearances (nine starts) against the Dodgers. Hill is making his second start since returning from blister issues, something that plagued him last season as well. He struck out six in five innings versus San Francisco on May 16 while allowing one run (on a HR) and just six hits. He is 1-0 with a 4.05 ERA in five career appearances (four starts / teams are 2-2) against St. Louis.

The pick: I have to believe that Leake has pitched over his head so far in 2017 and winning at Dodger Stadium, where LA is 17-7 and averaging 5.58 RPG, is a stretch. Take the home team.

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