MLB Picks and Parlays - Jackie Robinson Day 2018
MLB Jackie Robinson Day Preview
Welcome to our Gameday Picks: Jackie Robinson Day Edition! April 15th, 1947 was the date Jackie Robinson broke the colour barrier and became the first African-American player in the modern era to play in the Majors. More than half of the 26 000+ Brooklyn Dodgers fans at Ebbets Field that day were fellow African-Americans. In 1997, Robinson's number 42 was retired by the entire MLB, which was a first in any pro sport. It wasn't until 2004 when Jackie Robinson Day became an official celebration on April 15 and the league still carries on the tradition.
We still have our eye on the prize after going 2-1 with Wednesday's picks. So what's in store for this special day? Our Sunday card will be breaking down the Orioles at Boston starting at 1:05pm ET, followed by an AL West matchup for the late afternoon game with the A's at Mariners at 4:10pm ET and we'll end with the primetime/seemingly one-sided affair of the Rangers visiting Houston at 8:08pm ET. Let's get into it!
MLB Jackie Robinson Day Key Betting Trends
- Baltimore is 5-2 in Bundy's last 7 after the team allowed 5 or more runs in their last game.
- While Boston is 7-1 in their last 8 home games, the Sox are only 2-6 in their last 8 with Gary Cederstrom as home plate umpire.
- Oakland is just 1-10 in their last 11 games against a starter with a higher WHIP than 1.30 and are just 1-4 in their last 5 road games against a right-handed starter.
- Seattle is 5-1 in their last 6 home games against teams who are less than .400 on the road and are 6-2 in Felix Hernandez's last 8 starts.
- Texas is 0-6 in their last 6 games after picking up a win and they are 1-10 in their last 11 against a starter with a lower WHIP than 1.10.
- Houston is 8-2 in their last 10 meetings against Texas and are 12-1 in Justin Verlander's last 13 starts and 6-0 in his last 6 home starts.
MLB Jackie Robinson Day Picks and Parlays
It's all about the price here. Sure, there are a lot of betting trends that favor Boston in this spot, but the two tidbits listen above are something to be aware of. Not only that, but Bundy has been almost as good as Sale to start off the season. Offensively, we can't just forget how Boston started the season averaging just 3.4 runs in their first seven games. This current run-fest could just be a blip. Look for the Orioles to keep it close in this one or snatch a game from their AL East rivals.Baltimore Orioles +1.5 (-105)
This line is a bit confusing, but we can't play the overguessing game. Oakland is in bad form right now and Sean Manaea isn't a powerful weapon against the Mariners. The only thing they have going for them is offense right now. Seattle trumps them on that though, having scored almost 30 runs in their last four games. King Felix also has a dominant record against the A's. There's no reason for the M's to be underdogs in this spot at home. Take the Seattle Mariners here!Seattle Mariners (+100)
Texas took the last game, but Houston will put a stop to them immediately. Colon has been good, it's true, but not only are we expecting regression in a big way for the veteran, we also can't trust his superb record against the Astros. It spans his entire career. Altuve is batting .400 against him as well, and that's in 20 ABs, not a small sample size. Verlander will be hot as well and we need to back him until he proves us wrong. Take the Houston Astros at the high price here. It might be close but Houston takes this one!Houston Astros (-380)
Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox
The Baltimore Orioles (5-10) are looking to turn things around with a surprise win on Sunday in game 3 of a four game set at Fenway. The team is currently struggling offensively, averaging only 2.6 runs in their last five games, in which they've lost four. They are averaging 4.22 runs on the road though, which isn't terrible. Bad new though, as Jonathan Schoop was put on the 10 day DL with an oblique strain on Saturday.
If the O's want to win or keep this close, they'll have to rely on Dylan Bundy (0-1, 1.35 ERA). In the right-hander's first three starts, Bundy's only given up three runs in 20 innings. His last game against the Blue Jays saw him strike out 10 batters in just seven innings, but gave up two runs in the hard luck loss. In his five starts against the Red Sox last season, the 25-year-old went 2-2 with a 3.94 ERA.
Looking for a series win against their division rivals, the Boston Red Sox (12-2) have all the offense they need. They've averaged 8.9 runs to win six of their last seven on this historic run. Recent addition J.D. Martinez has 13 RBIs so far and hit his third homer in Saturday's 10-2 win over the O's. He's only outshone by Hanley Ramirez who has 15 RBIs.
While the BoSox have their offense checked off, their ace Chris Sale (1-0, 1.06 ERA) will try to keep their pitching divine as well. The left-hander hasn't had trouble with the Orioles recently, going 3-0 with a 2.05 ERA against them last season. Sale's last start on Tuesday saw Boston win 14-1.
Oakland Athletics at Seattle Mariners
Losers of six of eight, the Oakland Athletics (5-10), aim to avoid the sweep at the hands of their AL West rivals on Sunday afternoon. Offense wasn't a problem on Saturday as Mark Canha, Khris Davis, and Stephen Piscotty all blasted long balls for seven total RBIs in the 10-8 loss.
Oakland looks to improve their pitching on Sunday behind Sean Manaea (1-2, 1.74 ERA). His numbers against the Mariners are mediocre at best, with a 3-3 record and 4.32 ERA. The left-hander has been decent this season, despite the losing record. In the 20.2 innings of his three starts, he's only allowed four total runs and just two walks.
As for the Seattle Mariners (8-4), they are sitting just above the A's in the division even though they have a much better record. They'll look to remedy that today and attempt to get in second place with a fifth straight win. During their previous four wins, the M's scored a total of 29 runs. The offense is definitely clicking here.
Felix Hernandez (2-1, 6.60 ERA) is looking like the opposite of Manaea: winnings record and high ERA. The right-hander hasn't played six innings in any of his three starts so far. Good news for Seattle is that King Felix has a career 25-9 record against the A's with a 2.60 ERA and three complete games in his 46 starts against them.
Texas Rangers at Houston Astros
The Texas Rangers (5-11) are on pace for the worst season start in franchise history, but could wrest a series from their rivals on Sunday night in the primetime game. It could be their first of the year. Ronald Guzman, playing in only his second game, was instrumental in the Rangers' 6-5 extra inning win on Saturday, homering in the 8th to tie and then belting the winning RBI in the 10th.
The ageless Bartolo Colon (0-0, 1.64 ERA) has started the season in form, striking out 10 in the 11 innings he's pitched. The 44-year-old got a no decision against the A's and has since had two bullpen appearances. Colon's numbers against the 'Stros are very reassuring, as he's 8-4 with a 4.09 ERA against them.
Despite starting the season at 9-2, the Houston Astros (10-5) have lost their last three of four games. Jose Altuve should be a factor as he's hit in 13 of his last 14.
Justin Verlander (2-0, 1.45 ERA) is still a force to be reckoned with. In the 18.2 innings he's pitched this season, the 35-year-old has 23 strikeouts and of his three starts so far, he hasn't allowed any runs in two of them. He's had a resurgence since joining the Astros, going 7-0 with a 1.20 ERA in his last eight with the squad dating back to last season.
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