Reds v Giants
It will be the end of the road for the San Francisco Giants when they go to Cincinnati to face up against the Reds in an elimination game on Tuesday. The Reds, who are up 2-0 in a best-of-five series, will win this National League Divisional Series on the back of Homer Bailey. The right-hander is in a groove. He finished off the regular season with a no-hitter and then threw four scoreless innings in his final appearance. Like many pitchers, Bailey has had some struggles at Great American Ball Park, but he can take solace in the fact that he’s thrown a quality start (six innings or more pitched; three earned runs or fewer allowed) in two of his final three appearances there. Though the sample size is small, Bailey did do well in his one outing against the Giants going 6 1/3 innings and allowing two earned runs on seven hits while striking out six. His pitching opponent Ryan Vogelsong, struggled both down the stretch and away from AT&T Park this season. After a dominating first half in which he registered a 2.36 ERA, he scuffled after the All-Star Break delivering a 4.78 ERA. Moreover, he pitched much more confidently at home (2.86 ERA) than on the road (3.87 ERA). Expect the Reds – on at 1.67 – to be sipping champagne after this one against the Giants (2.20).
A's v Tigers
Like the Reds, the Detroit Tigers should be able to end their American League Divisional Series against the Oakland A’s, who are down 2-0. This game in Oakland will feature Anibal Sanchez on the mound for the Tigers. Sanchez started slow after being acquired from the Miami Marlins but hit his stride just at the right time. In September he posted a 2.43 ERA and allowed just one run in his final 15 1/3 innings. The A’s will likely counter with Brett Anderson. Anderson was fantastic after spending most of the season on the disabled list. Through his first four starts he posted an eye-popping 0.69 ERA. But then injury returned and, in his final two appearances, he gave up eight runs in nine innings of work. No doubt, Anderson is champing at the bit to get into this post-season series, but his injury to the oblique (back) can sometimes be a nagging one and the odds that he’s pitching at his full abilities are unlikely. Go with the Tigers at 2.12, not the A’s at 1.72.