Home run (Safe bet)
Pick the Oakland A’s at 1.53 to beat the Texas Rangers at home. Oakland’s reign in the American League West will continue in this Monday tilt. The pitching matchup here very much favors the A’s. Oakland’s starting pitcher Drew Pomeranz has been a massive success in his first season for the A’s. Overall, he has a 5-3 record and a 1.90 ERA serving a variety of roles for the team. But as a starter he’s been particularly fierce. In seven starts, he is 4-2 with a 1.88 ERA. This season, he’s been unbeatable at O.Co Coliseum, owning a 4-0 record.
The Rangers’ Colby Lewis has not been nearly as successful as evidenced by his 5.74 ERA. With key injuries to the likes of Prince Fielder and Jurickson Profar, the Rangers offence probably won’t be a great help either. Typically a juggernaut at the plate, Texas’ lineup currently ranks below average in the American League in run production. (In contrast, Oakland is first in the AL.)
Squeeze play (Gutsiest call)
Look for the Colorado Rockies, on at 2.70 to surprise the Los Angeles Dodgers on the road. The Rockies hot start to the 2014 campaign is a distant memory, but, on the plus side, their struggles will interrupted in this clash. No doubt, Colorado has been the National League West’s worst team over its past twenty games, posting a 7-13 record. In addition, a deal of their problems have been in road contest like this one. In their first thirty-five away games, they’re 14-21.
So why is this game different? The reason: Colorado is up against Hyun-Jin Ryu. The Dodger starter has struggled so mightily at home this year, it’s hard to overlook. While he’s 5-1 with a 1.64 ERA in seven road games, the starter is 2-2 with a 6.15 ERA in five home starts. That disparity might be overlooked if not for the fact that not only has he been uncomfortable at home but he also has a terrible track record against Rockies hitters. In 59 career plate appearances, Colorado batters possess a .370 batting average, .414 on base percentage .593 slugging percentage. Finally, Ryu has scuffled as of late. In his past two starts he owns a 4.50 ERA.
The Rockies will counter on the pitcher’s mound with Tyler Matzek. A former first-round draft pick, Matzek was impressive in his Major League debut giving up just five hits and two runs, while striking out seven and walking none in seven innings of work against the Atlanta Braves on June 11. What’s more impressive is he did it at Coors Stadium. A Southern California native, Matzek can respond to his first big league start near home in one of two ways – either nerves at pitching in front of family or excitement at showing what he can do. The bet here is he’ll do the latter.
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