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junkmansports
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WHO'S HOT AND WHO'S IS NOT

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On 09/01/2011 08:39 AM in MLB
Who’s hot

NCAAF: Syracuse is on a 7-2 run against the spread in its September games.

NCAAF: The over is 20-7 in Wisconsin’s last 27 games as a favorite.

NFL: The Detroit Lions are the talk of the preseason heading into Thursday’s matchup at 3-0 straight up, but while the club’s defense is getting all the attention, the offense leads the league with 98 points through three games.

MLB: Philadelphia is 20-7 in its last 27 road games.

Who’s not

NCAAF: Memphis is 2-5-1 against the spread in its last eight overall.

NCAAF: The under is 3-9 in Kentucky’s last 12 overall.

NFL: The Kansas City Chiefs have scored a league-low 23 points while going winless through three preseason games to date.

MLB: Florida is 5-17 in its last 22 as an underdog.

Key stat

28 – Wisconsin has won 28 consecutive non-league games straight up heading into Thursday’s meeting with UNLV. The Badgers are set as big 35-point favorites at home to the Runnin’ Rebels.

Injury that shouldn’t be overlooked

Cody Ross, San Francisco Giants: X-rays on Ross’ hand came back negative after he was hit by a pitch Wednesday and the team is hopeful he will be able to play on Friday when the Giants resume play against the rival Diamondbacks.

Game of the day

UNLV at Wisconsin (-35, 56)

Notable quotable

"I'm very excited to be getting out there again. Playing against a team like Mississippi State and them being ranked is huge for us. Plus being on national television gives us a chance to show everyone what we're capable of and what we can do." Memphis senior defensive end Frank Trotter on his club’s opener Thursday against Mississippi State. The Tigers are set as big 30.5-point home underdogs.

Notes and tips

The Texas Rangers will activate third baseman Adrian Beltre from the 15-day disabled list Thursday. Beltre has been sidelined with a hamstring injury on July 22. He had a setback earlier this month when he aggravated the injury. In his first season with the Rangers, Beltre is batting .276 with 20 home runs and 76 RBIs in 100 games.

UNLV defensive backs Michael Johnson and Corbin Brown are currently set as questionable for Thursday’s game against Wisconsin. Last season the Runnin’ Rebels allowed 227.8 passing yards per game, good for 77th in the nation. Wisconsin, meanwhile, with Jon Budmayr out with his elbow injury, North Carolina State transfer Russell Wilson will take the snaps.

According to an ESPN report, Houston Texans running back Arian Foster could be out three or four weeks with his hamstring injury. Foster tweeted a shot of his MRI and ESPN medical analyst Michael Kaplan claims Foster tore “some of the muscle fibers, we'll call it Grade 1 to 2. There's a fair amount of swelling and bleeding on the MRI, so this is real. ... It's gonna be a couple weeks at least. If you get him back too soon, he's at a high risk of re-rupture. I think they're gonna go a little slow with him." Houston is a 3.5-point underdog at Minnesota on Thursday.
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Pfile Nickname junkmansports
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09/01/2011 08:40 AM
Streakers

Yovani Gallardo, Milwaukee Brewers (15-8, 3.37 ERA)

The Brewers have won each of Gallardo’s last three starts as he’s allowed only three earned runs over that stretch while striking out 25. He struck out 10 and didn’t give up an earned run in a 6-4 win over the Cubs in his last outing and he’s 9-1 with a 2.45 ERA at Miller Park this season.

Jon Lester, Boston Red Sox (14-6, 3.09 ERA)

Lester has been lights out over his last three starts, compiling a 1.42 ERA while giving up only nine hits and booking three wins.

“The two before this one had a few too many walks,’’ Lester told reporters after holding the A’s to one earned run while walking two in a 9-3 win. “I think if I can minimize those, like today, it was pretty good and I was able to attack the zone and stay pretty consistent with it.”

Slumping

Danny Duffy, Kansas City Royals (3-8, 5.55 ERA)

The Royals have dropped each of Duffy’s last five starts, including a 8-7 loss to Cleveland last week in which he gave up four runs on six hits while striking out seven and walking two. Even though he has pitched seven innings only his last six outings, Kansas City plans to shut him down after two or three more starts to preserve his arm for next season.

A.J. Burnett, New York Yankees (9-11, 5.31 ERA)

If Burnett bombs again on Thursday against the Red Sox, he could be on his way to the bullpen. He has allowed 16 runs over his last 6 2/3 innings on the mound and has served up 25 home runs already. Basically, if the Yanks hadn’t had so many doubleheaders recently, he probably won’t still be starting.
"We'll deal with it when we're in a position to deal with it," Yankees GM Cashman told reporters of the situation. "When we have to make a decision, we'll have to make a decision. Obviously, he's not pitching well."
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