In the Chicago derby on Tuesday, the White Sox are the right pick at home to the Cubs.
Sometimes statistics are enough to make assessments on picks and other times a good old fashioned scouting report based on observation is essential. This is the case with Cubs starter Edwin Jackson.
Although White Sox hitters have a lifetime .159 batting average against Jackson (shortstop Alexei Ramirez is 0 for 17 in his career), that version of Jackson is very different than the one of late. Watching Jackson pitch in his last outing against the Pittsburgh Pirates (three innings pitched; four runs allowed) suggests that the right hander is far from being his sharpest.
His slider, a pitch that is key to his success, isn’t moving with much bite and he lacks command for his fastball. If you need some stats to back up his ineptitude, check out his 1-7 record and his 6.11 ERA.
Watching the White Sox’s Chris Sale is seeing a pitcher far more on his game. He’s 5-2 with a 2.53 ERA and has been particularly strong at home where he’s 3-0 with a 1.47 ERA. As good as he’s looking you can expect his historic performance against Cubs hitters (they’re 1 for 10 lifetime against him) to hold up. Take the White Sox at 1.48.
Two subpar pitchers and a stadium that has improved as an offensive venue means that there will be some decent run-scoring when the San Diego Padres visit the Seattle Mariners.
Neither starting pitcher – Edinson Volquez (Padres) or Brandon Maurer (Mariners) – has been good this year. Volquez has a 5.76 ERA and has been even worse on the road where he’s posted a 6.08 ERA. Maurer has been every bit as bad with a 6.80 ERA. While slightly better at home (6.14 ERA), it still hasn’t been pretty.
Both lineups should benefit from a more hitter friendly Safeco Field. Following last season, when the ballpark was the worst offensively in terms of runs scored out of baseball’s thirty teams, the club changed the dimensions of the field. While Safeco didn’t magically transform into a big-time hitters’ stadium, it has improved appreciably. Currently, it’s six spots higher on the list of run-scoring stadiums compared with last year. The upshot: go with over 8 runs at 1.85.
Chicago White Sox to win at 1.48
Over 8 runs in Seattle Mariners vs San Diego Padres 1.85