Yankees Team Total Over 5.5 -115 = WIN (+1.0 units)
Mets Team Total Over 4.5 -140 = WIN (+1.0 units)
Rockies Team Total Over 6.5 -105 = LOSS (-1.05 units)
Sunday 5/26/19 Picks:
Call this my, ‘I know I’m going to get burned by this play but let me jam this fork into this toaster to see what happens anyway,’ pick. Erick Fedde starts today for the Nationals and while the Marlins employ one of the worst offenses in the league, they’ve actually swung some hot bats lately (save for Saturday when they were shut out). The Marlins have scored at least five runs in four of their last five games, with the lone exception coming yesterday when they were shutout by Patrick Corbin. Fedde has only thrown 81 1/3 innings in his three pro seasons but he profiles as a low-strikeout, high-walk pitcher that needs to produce ground balls in order to be effective. My prediction is that he’ll hold the Marlins to two runs through five innings, but they add two more against Washington’s struggling bullpen (4.62 xFIP) to barely get us over the 3.5-run threshold. Either way, I fully expect to be sweating this play until the later innings but that doesn’t mean I don’t see value in the pick.
The Pick: Marlins Team Total Over 3.5 Runs -135 (Risking 1.35 units to win 1.0 units)
The Twins have already scored 19 runs in this series and now get a matchup against Dylan Covey, who allowed four runs in four innings of work last Tuesday in Houston. Opponents are only batting .211 against Covey but walks have been a major issue for the right-hander. In his 20 1/3 innings pitched, Covey has issued 16 free passes and his strikeout rate is down to 7.5%. What’s interesting is that opponents aren’t hitting Covey hard (22.9% hard hit rate) but he also owns a 1.77 HR/9 ratio. While some of these numbers don’t add up, I’m not going to overthink this one: The Twins are scoring runs in bunches and Covey, regardless of his low BAA and hard-hit rate, doesn’t have overpowering stuff. Plus, as I often do when it comes to taking the over on an individual team total, I like targeting bad bullpens, which Chicago’s pen certainly qualifies (4.36 xFIP).
The Pick: Twins Team Total Over 5.5 Runs -135 (Risking 1.35 units to win 1.0 units)
The Rockies left us hanging last night, falling one run short of eclipsing their 6.5-run total. Even though we’ll need them to produce another two runs to cover the over on Sunday, Colorado should get there today, as David Hess takes the mound for Baltimore. In his 45 1/3 innings of work this season, Hess has allowed 46 hits and 17 home runs. He’s also coming off back-to-back losses to the Yankees in which he allowed 14 runs (13 earned), 14 hits (including seven home runs) and issuing five walks over just 11 innings. There’s nothing in Hess’ profile that suggests he won’t get shredded today at Coors. Over the past two seasons, he owns below-average strikeout (17.2%), walk (8.4%), ground ball (31.6%) and hard contact (34.3%) rates. Plus, once Hess departs the game, the Orioles will turn to a bullpen that owns a 4.41 xFIP entering today’s action.
The Pick: Rockies Team Total Over 7.5 Runs +100 (Risking 1.0 units to win 1.0 units)
Rain could threaten to postpone or cancel our team total if the game doesn’t go nine innings. That said, I can’t predict what the weather will do and the A’s matchup is too good with Mike Leake to take this game off the board. Leake has been much like the Mariners as a whole: Started off hot, but has faded dramatically in May. The former Cardinal is coming off one of his worst starts of the year, allowing seven runs on 11 hits (with three home runs) over five innings at Texas on Monday. Leake did hold the A’s to one earned run over 6 2/3 innings two starts ago, but I’m willing to bet he won’t replicate that success today. Oakland’s offense can be boom-or-bust, but the A’s have been on fire of late, scoring at least five runs in each of their last five games respectively. Leake needs to generate ground balls in order to work deep into games because he doesn’t miss many bats. The A’s lineup is chock-full of fly-ball hitters, so this matchup should suit them well.
The Pick: A’s Team Total Over 4.5 Runs -140 (Risking 1.40 units to win 1.0 units)
MLB: 37-29-4 (+6.35 units)
NHL: 1-0 (+1.0 units)