1st 5 Mets/Nationals Un 4.5 (-120): Tonight we finally get the MLB debut of Nats stud Lucas Giolito. Depending on who you ask Giolito is either the best or 2nd best pitching prospect in all of baseball. He throws in the high 90’s with an excellent curveball and a pretty solid changeup. To put it simply from a stuff perspective the guy is already at an elite level. Facing him will be Matt Harvey who after a very unlucky start to the season has started to revert back statistically towards his normal self. Yes Harvey still has a 4.64 ERA but that’s mostly a result of a .332 BABIP and a 66% strand rate both of which are on the unlucky side. His xFIP of 4.12 is a bit better, and in his last 5 starts he’s given up 2 ER’s or less 4 times, while only issuing 5 BB’s in that span. I think we’ve got ourselves a nice pitching matchup here and I’m looking at somehting like 1-1 after 5.
Rangers -105: I’m not huge on this Rangers team and to be honest I think most of their rotation is complete trash, Cole Hamels however I’m buying in on. No he isn’t as good as his 2.79 ERA indicates but he’s still a solid option. His BB rate is higher than usual, but his K rate is still good as is his ground ball rate. CC Sabathia on the other hand has been about as fools gold as it gets so far this season. His xFIP of 4.62 is nearly 2 full runs higher than his 2.71 ERA. The main source of luck for CC has come with his 4.2% HR/FB rate which in no way is sustainable, especially considering he was at 16.6% last year and 23.3% in 2014. A little extra gravy comes with the fact the Yankees blew a 6-5 9th inning lead at about 3:00 AM this morning and mentally have gotta be pretty low right now. Plenty of reasons here for me to take the Rangers.
ML Parlay Cubs/Indians (+119): This one is pretty straight forward as most ML Parlays are. I don’t need to get into much statistically or analysis wise to show you that on paper the Cubs should beat the Reds, and the Indians should beat the Braves. I’ll admit this parlay is a bit on the square side, but square plays can make it to the window too. If Jon Lester loses to John Lamb or Corey Kluber loses to Matt Wisler than so be it, I’ll take my loss and move on.
Astros/Angels Ov 8.5 (-120): Feels like a nice spot for an over in this one with a couple of low K guys doing battle. Scott Feldman will get the spot start for Houston with Lance McCullers being scratched due to a blister issue. Feldman has a 3.07 ERA but a 4.27 xFIP and only a 6.55 K/9 rate. At this point Feldman is just a journeyman with very mediocre stuff and I don’t see him doing very well tonight. Opposing him is Tim Lincecum, who much like Feldman is just a guy well past his prime that now just has average to below average stuff. So far this year in 2 starts Timmy has only been able to go a total of 9 innings and only struck out 4, while also issuing 4 walks. He’s only hitting about 88 MPH on his fastball and I think the Astros have their way with him tonight. I could see a 7-5 type of game here and I think we get into each teams bullpen pretty early.
Marlins -104 & Marlins/Tigers Ov 9.5 (-120): Whenever I get a chance to fade Mike Pelfrey at right around even money or better I do it, today is no exception. On the year Pelfrey has a 4.91 ERA to go with a 5.08 xFIP which is 3rd worst in all of baseball. Pelfrey also only has a K/9 rate of 4.46 which is 2nd worst in baseball. He’s literally one of the worst SP’s in baseball right now, he’s frankly just awful and the Marlins should absolutely have their way with him. Now I’ll admit Adam Conley hasn’t been as good as his 3.56 ERA would indicate, his xFIP of 4.60 is over a run higher than that mark. His BB rate is a little high and his HR/FB rate has been a bit lucky. What I do like about Conley though is his 8.21 K/9 rate which if nothing else shows that he has some decent stuff. He can miss some bats and at least generate some easy outs. I think Conley probably does get hit a bit tonight, but I expect Pelfrey to get battered which is why I’ll hit both the Marlins and the over. Something along the lines of 8-5 or 8-6 Marlins sounds about right to me.