The Tigers will pick up an easy victory on Sunday at home against the Chicago White Sox.
When Detroit’s Anibal Sanchez gets the assignment against the White Sox, he’s a must pick – or, at least, as of late he’s a must pick. Sanchez’s performances in his last two starts against Chicago have been masterful. He’s thrown 13 1/3 innings, given up 11 hits and zero runs and struck out 15 batters.
To be honest, it really wouldn’t matter who Sanchez was pitching against lately as he’s been one of baseball’s most on-form pitcher. He’s won his last seven decisions and, in the month of September has a 1.31 ERA in three starts.
The White Sox, who are the American League’s worst run scoring club, will be relying on pitcher Erik Johnson to twirl a gem. While the right-hander did pitch well against the lowly Minnesota Twins last time out (six innings; no runs allowed), he was slammed in his outing just before that, conceding seven hits and two runs in just 3 2/3 innings. That bad appearance was against…you guessed it, the Tigers. Pick Detroit to win at 1.31.
In an important clash with Wild Card implications, the Kansas City Royals will earn a hard fought triumph over the Texas Rangers.
The Royals send James Shields, a player known for his work in big games, to the pitcher’s mound. In reality, Shields has been up and down this year, but he’s currently riding a crest of positive momentum. He’s won both of his past two outings and gave up just three runs in 16 innings during that stretch.
He’s catching a Rangers team at a time when they’re in freefall. The Rangers entered this weekend with a 4-13 record in September. Even when Texas’ players are at their best, Shields has a good track record against Texas hitters. In 306 plate appearances, Texas batters own a weak .248 batting average (and .293 on base percentage) against Shields.
The Rangers will pin their hopes on pitcher Alexi Ogando. While Ogando is an excellent pitcher, this will only be his second start since August 13 (he has thrown four game out of the bullpen in that span). I’m always weary to expect too much from a pitcher who hasn’t had many recent starts. Choose the Royals, who are on at 1.72 to win.
Back the Royals at 1.72
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