Twins +103: There is just no reason for James Shields to be favored in a big league baseball game right now. I don’t care where the game is playing being played, or who the opponent is, he shouldn’t be favored. For about a month now Shields has been throwing slow, straight, grapefruits up there and hitters have been licking their chops to go after them. He’s been piling up walks, getting very few K’s, and when he’s brave enough to throw anything over the plate it’s getting crushed. Even a team as bad as the Twins should be able to bang him around the way he’s throwing right now. Ricky Nolasco is admittedly no stud in his own right, but his 4.16 xFIP isn’t THAT bad and he does have a respectable K/9 rate to go with a very good BB/9 rate. In a game like this I don’t need Nolasco to deal in order to win, as long as he’s just mediocre that should be enough for the Twins to win.
Orioles/Padres Ov 9 (-110): A couple of gas cans take the mound for a day time affair at Petco today. Yovani Gallardo is just a shell of his former self at this point. In 28 IP this year he has a 5.4 K/9 rate to go with a 4.13 BB/9, both of which are just awful. If you’re thinking those numbers are just due to a small sample size lets keep in mind his 5.91 K/9 rate in 184 IP in 2015. The guy just doesn’t have good stuff anymore and as a result he doesn’t miss bats. On the year his xFIP 5.57 which I believe would be worst in the league if he had enough innings to qualify. His average fastball this year is only 87.7 MPH. I could go on and on, the easiest and most frank way to put it is Yovani Gallardo sucks. Sorry, it is what is it. Padres lefty Christian Friedrich has worked his way to a 3.60 ERA, but a 4.89 xFIP shows that it’s mostly been done by luck. Most of that luck comes with a 77.6% strand rate which is keeping that ERA low despite an insane 5.0 BB/9 rate. In short Friedrich keeps clogging the bases with walks, yet most of the time he’s able to wiggle out of trouble before things get ugly. He’s just a ticking time bomb though and it’s only a matter of time before more of those walks starting scoring. A day game against a nice Orioles offense could be a recipe for disaster for him. This game has 7-5 or 8-6 written all over it.
1st 5 Innings Blue Jays/Rockies Un 7 (-120): I’m probably crazy to even attempt an under for a day game at Coors Field, but here we go. My now you guys know that I really like Aaron Sanchez. He’s got an excellent xFIP of 3.22, an excellent ground ball rate of 58.1%, and a very good K rate of 8.6 K/9. He throws hard, has electric stuff, misses a ton of bats, etc, etc. He’s very good. Rockies starter Tyler Anderson through 3 starts and 17.2 IP has actually been very good too. In that time he’s put up a 9.17 K/9 to go with a 1.53 BB/9, both of which are excellent marks. His 2.48 xFIP is very good, and his 62% ground ball rate is excellent. Granted it’s only 3 starts but so far there is a lot to be intrigued about with Anderson. I know the ball will be flying around like nobodies business but I’m going to take a shot that these two young, solid SP’s can keep this thing somewhat under control through the first 5.
That’s all the time I have for write up’s but here is the rest of my card…
ML Par: Nats/Indians (+123)
ML Par: Astros/Yankees (+161)