The St. Louis Cardinals will benefit from the form of a resurgent Adam Wainwright when they host the Kansas City Royals Sunday. I bet against Wainwright early in the season while he was suffering through the normal struggles of post-elbow surgery, but he’s now coming into form. After a rocky April, he delivered a 3.00 ERA in six starts in May. There were a couple of bumps in the road at the beginning of June (there’s always a little regression), but in his last outing he went seven innings, giving up just five hits, two walks and two runs while striking out seven against the Chicago White Sox. The Royals pitcher Luis Mendoza hasn’t won a game since May 13. Take the Cardinals at home at 1.48 and pass on the Royals at 2.65.
In the battle of the bad – the San Diego Padres at the Oakland A’s – the Athletics are the right pick. Oakland entered this series with some much-needed momentum, having swept the Colorado Rockies on the road in a three-game series. It was the first series sweep for the A’s in 2012. While they were aided by playing in Denver’s thin air, the A’s showed some spark at the plate, scoring 26 runs in three contests.
Oakland starter Bartolo Colon should be happy to return home, as he threw eight innings of shutout ball against a fierce Texas Rangers lineup last time he pitched in Oakland. The Padres players have struggled enormously, with this game’s starting pitcher being no exception. San Diego’s Clayton Richard is 3-7 with a 4.30 ERA. All told, the A’s should prevail at 1.70 rather than the Padres at 2.15.