cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
On 09/14/2011 01:01 AM in MLB

Cnotes Wedesday's Early /Night MLB Best Bets !

Texas Rangers Collide With Cleveland Indians

Huff and Holland sounds like the name of a law firm or maybe a snuff film set in Amsterdam. Instead, it's the Wednesday pitching matchup in Texas between the Rangers and Cleveland Indians.

The middle of this 3-game set will be featured in the first of an ESPN doubleheader starting at 7:00 p.m. (ET). A pair of lefties square off on the mound, David Huff for the Indians and the Rangers' Derek Holland.

Things are suddenly getting exciting in the AL West. Texas entered the series with a 3-game lead over the Angels in the division standings, and with nine of their final 12 games following this series on the road – including the last three of the season in Anaheim – the Rangers know they're just a short stumble away from being caught.

This series gets underway Tuesday evening when Justin Masterson and Matt Harrison are the initial mound duel. Texas was priced at -160 on the MLB odds board with the results still pending.

It will be just the second career start for Huff (2-5, 3.05) against the Rangers, and he sure hopes it goes like the first one. He tossed a complete game 4-hitter at home over Texas in April 2010, one mistake pitch to Michael Young that was negated by one mistake pitch from Harrison a few innings later.

Huff has started September with losses on the road at Kansas City and Chicago, allowing seven earned runs in the 12 1/3 combined innings. The Tribe has dropped his last four assignments away from Cleveland, Huff's only winning road start this campaign coming in his first outing of 2011 in Minnesota on July 18.

Holland (16-13, 4.12) was lit up by the Tribe in this ballpark on Aug. 5, punched out before the end of the second inning when Cleveland held a 6-2 advantage. Texas battled back for an 8-7 win in 12 innings to cash on a -150 money line.

The other time Holland pitched against the Tribe this year season resulted in a complete-game shutout June 4 in Cleveland. It was his first of four shutouts on the season, part of this young southpaw's 2011 repertoire that has been very, very good, and very, very bad at times.

Holland has 17 quality starts in 2011, above average for MLB hurlers about to make their 30th trip to the mound. Of the 12 starts that lacked quality, 11 have been real shellings. Holland's ERA in those 48 1/3 innings is over 10; his ERA in the 18 'non-shellings' is very stingy 1.85.

Texas was expected to see two players return from the disabled list in time for the start of this series. Outfielder Nelson Cruz (hamstring) and reliever Darren O'Day (shoulder) have both been missing since late-August.

The Rangers started Tuesday with a 6-1 lead in the season series vs. the Indians. They swept four at Cleveland in early-June and took two of three here at home in August. The 'over' prevailed in two of the three at Rangers Ballpark.

This game is being moved up an hour from regular start times at Rangers Ballpark, so there's a chance it's still 100ºF at first pitch, at least the upper 90s and an 8-12 mph breeze coming from the SW (RF corner to LF corner).

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:10 AM

Four MLB clubs that would love to play postseason spoiler

Finding value in late September can be a tough task for baseball bettors. Some playoff races are all but over, while others are just heating up. And in the middle are a handful of teams that would love to play spoiler.

Here’s a look at some clubs, outside of the playoff picture, that could throw a wrench in the postseason plans of their opponents while also getting great value from oddsmakers:

Los Angeles Dodgers

With all of the issues brought on by owner Frank McCourt, the Dodger Blue have been in the red for most of this season. But behind MVP candidate Matt Kemp and Cy Young prospect Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles is playing great ball in September.

“Guys have really continued to get after it every day,” manager Don Mattingly recently told reporters. “We’ve played good defense and we’ve pitched well, which tells you where you’re at as a club.”

The Dodgers lost the past two nights heading into Tuesday, but prior to that, they were tearing it up during a 15-3 spree in which they won five straight series. They put a ding into playoff hopefuls St. Louis and San Francisco and they even won two of three at Atlanta, which is now trying to hang on for the NL Wildcard.

In a season that once was a train wreck, L.A. (72-74) now has a shot at finishing above .500. The Dodgers could be a solid sleeper bet when they play division-leading Arizona and take on Wildcard-chasing San Francisco in the final weeks of the schedule.

Toronto Blue Jays

This team has the misfortune of playing in the toughest division in baseball. The Yankees and Red Sox are perennial contenders, and the Rays have consistently been in the playoff hunt over the past few years. Put the Jays (74-73) in any other division and they might be a regular in postseason play.

Last week, Toronto took three of four in a home set against Boston. The Blue Jays followed that by winning two of three against the Orioles. Toronto is floating around .500 and it wants to make this a winning season.

The Blue Jays also had a strong finishing kick in 2010, going 12-4 in their final 16 games, including a 9-2 run to end the season. Toronto’s home stretch is littered with matchups against teams in the playoff hunt, including the Los Angeles Angels.

Florida Marlins

Generally speaking, the Marlins (67-79) are awful. And despite the fact they can’t draw fans, somehow they’ll start the 2012 season in a brand new stadium. But manager Jack McKeon doesn’t seem to be the type to let his team lie down.

Just take a look at this past weekend. Granted, the Fish were playing the Pirates, but in Games 2 and 3 of that series, Florida was minus its entire starting outfield due to injuries. McKeon made no excuses and his Marlins notched a three-game sweep. They also took two of three off the major league-leading Philadelphia Phillies earlier this month.

Florida beat another playoff contender Monday night, opening its road series in Atlanta with a 5-4, 12-inning victory over the Braves. The spoiler role suits the Marlins just fine.

“If you don’t get the opportunity to play in the playoffs, it’s fun to see how we can affect the outcome,” shortstop Donnie Murphy told the media.

The Fish close out the 2011 campaign with contests against Philadelphia, Milwaukee, and Atlanta.

Washington Nationals

This one’s a little iffy. The Nats are 67-77 overall, but manager Davey Johnson didn’t bring back stud pitcher Stephen Strasburg just to sell tickets in the final month.

OK, maybe Johnson did want to put some butts in the seats. But it also shows the intent of trying to win games in the final month. The Nationals have won three of their last four heading into Tuesday, and can play spoiler in upcoming series against the Braves and Phillies, who are attempting to lock up home field through the National League playoffs.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:15 AM

Two rookie pitchers make first MLB starts Wednesday

Two MLB rookie pitchers are scheduled to make the first stars of their careers Wednesday.

Dylan Axelrod gets the call for the Chicago White Sox against the Detroit Tigers after throwing two innings of scoreless relief on Sept. 7. He was 9-3 with a 2.69 ERA while splitting time between Double-A and Triple-A this season.

"I mean, that just adds to the excitement of it," Axelrod told reporters about facing on of the hottest teams in baseball. "It's a great opportunity to go against a team that's hot like that. It makes it that much better."

The White Sox are currently pegged around -110.

Meanwhile, Brad Peacock is expected to start for the Nationals after he gave up a run in 1 1/3 innings of MLB relief work this season. He has a fastball that tops out in the mid-90s to go along with a solid changeup and a curve.

The Nats are set as +120 underdogs at the New York Mets.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:18 AM

Wednesday’s betting tips: Over bets cash with Cueto

Who’s hot

MLB: The Toronto Blue Jays have won nine of Ricky Romeo’s last 10 starts.

MLB: The White Sox have won 20 of their last 29 games as a favorite.

Who’s not

MLB: The over is 2-12-2 in Jered Weaver’s last 16 starts against Oakland.

MLB: San Diego has won just three of its last 18.

Key stat

20-7-4 – While Johnny Cueto is looking to become the first Cincinnati Reds pitcher to lead the NL in ERA since 1944 (his currently sits at 2.38), the over is cashing in on his starts at home, going 20-7-4 in his last 31 outings at Great American Ballpark.

Injury that shouldn’t be overlooked

Hakeem Nicks, New York Giants – Nicks woke up Monday with a swollen knee and his status for Week 2’s matchup with St. Louis is now uncertain. The wideout was able to return to action after hurting the knee in New York’s loss to Washington and X-rays were negative initially.

Game of the day

Arizona Diamondbacks at Los Angeles Dodgers (+135, 7.5)

Notable quotable

"To be honest with you, I think the intensity and the effort is right there. Everything is just kind of going in a different direction at once. The good thing is we know how to figure that out and put it back together all at once. It seems like everybody is in a funk right now, you know what I'm saying? There's nobody to blame but everybody, so hopefully on Tuesday we come back and play better." – Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz about the club dipping to just three games ahead of the Devil Rays in the AL wild card race before Tuesday’s action. Ortiz sat out Tuesday’s game with back spasms.

Notes and tips

Just about all of the early action for Thursday’s big matchup between LSU and Mississippi State has come in on the Tigers. As of Tuesday evening about 72 percent of Covers.com Consensus bettors were backing LSU, which is currently set as a 3.5-point road favorite. LSU has covered in 11 of its last 14 meetings with Mississippi State.

It didn’t take long for some books to react to the Kansas City Chiefs’ terrible performance in Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills. After taking a 41-7 beating from the Buffalo Bills, some sportsbooks moved the reigning AFC West champs from around 50-1 to win the Super Bowl all the way to around 285-1.

Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel both returned to the Minnesota Twins' lineup for Tuesday's affair against the Kansas City Royals. Cuddyer has been sidelined for five games because of a sore left wrist. Kubel has not started since Friday because of a foot injury. First baseman Justin Morneau was not with the club as he returned to Minnesota for a family matter. He has been out of action since Aug. 28 with concussion-like symptoms. Cuddyer is batting .282 with 18 homers and 64 RBIs while Kubel is hitting .281 with 12 home runs and 57 RBIs.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:20 AM

Wednesday's streaking and slumping starting pitchers

Streaking

Roy Halladay, Philadelphia Phillies (17-5, 2.44 ERA)

Halladay is surging down the stretch as he’s in the mix for another Cy Young award as his club gets ready for another postseason run. Even though the Phillies have won just two of his last five starts, his numbers have held strong. He has allowed just nine earned runs over his last six trips to the hill, including last week's 5-3 win over Milwaukee that saw him go eight innings while yielding one run as he struck out nine.

Daniel Hudson, Arizona Diamondbacks (16-9, 3.41 ERA)

Hudson is coming off his third complete game of the season on Friday when he allowed five hits and one earned run to push the Diamondbacks to a 3-2 win over the Padres. He has now yielded only four runs over his last four starts, striking out 26 batters over that span.

Slumping

John Lackey, Boston Red Sox (12-12, 6.36 ERA)

Lackey took a comebacker off the leg in his last start, but expects to be OK to go Wednesday against the Blue Jays. He has allowed 11 runs over his last eight innings on the mound and is looking to snap a three-game losing skid. Lackey has walked at least three batters in each of his last five starts and owns the worst ERA of his career.

Rich Harden, Oakland Athletics (4-2, 4.74 ERA)

Harden’s strikeout numbers are still pretty impressive with 22 punch-outs in his last three games, but the Athletics have lost each of those contests. That’s partly because Harden has allowed 13 combined runs over that span including five home runs. He gave up three runs to the Royals in the first inning of his last start and was pulled after allowing four runs in five innings even though he struck out 10.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:22 AM

Hot lines: Wednesday's best MLB bets

Colorado Rockies at Milwaukee Brewers (-185, 8)

Even though the Milwaukee Brewers are cruising into the playoffs, some feel that they’ve done most of their work against the lesser teams in the bigs and haven’t proven their worth against the NL's elite.

It’s a notion manager Doug Melvin takes issue with.

"It depends when you played them," Melvin told reporters. "Were they winning teams when you played them? Pittsburgh was a winning team earlier in the year when we played them. Florida was a winning team when we played them. Cincinnati was winning earlier in the season. The good teams are separating themselves from the bad teams. I think that's what's happening."

The Brewers are definitely in a different class from the Rockies, but Kevin Millwood has been pretty good lately. Not good enough to entice us to make a Rockies wager, but we do like the under.

Pick: Under

San Diego Padres at San Francisco Giants (-160, 5.5)

While the Giants can probably kiss the NL West division title goodbye, they still have an outside shot at the wild card – albeit a very outside shot.

At this point, many have given up on the Giants heading back to the World Series and are already thinking ahead to the offseason and even that is causing some concern.

Pablo Sandoval lost a ton of weight last offseason, but some are speculating that he’s fallen off the wagon a bit as the season has rolled along. The slugger has also said he plans to take a full month off after the season is over, which has manager Bruce Bochy worried.

“This month he’s planning on taking has to be done the right way,” Bochy told the Mercury News. “We’ll keep an eye on him. He knows how important it is to keep the weight off. He’s a different player, offensively and defensively.”

To us, he doesn’t look all that out of shape and we don’t think the Giants are the sort of team to roll over. We’ll eat the chalk with Tim Lincecum starting.

Pick: Giants

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 01:28 AM

Wednesday, September 14

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Florida - 12:05 PM ET Atlanta -147 500
Atlanta - Under 8 500

St. Louis - 12:35 PM ET Pittsburgh +132 500
Pittsburgh - Over 8.5 500

Toronto - 1:35 PM ET Toronto +106 500
Boston - Over 10.5 500

Philadelphia - 2:05 PM ET Philadelphia -240 500
Houston - Under 7 500

Detroit - 2:10 PM ET Detroit +104 500
Chi. White Sox - Over 9.5 500

LA Angels - 3:35 PM ET Oakland +138 500
Oakland - Over 7 500

San Diego - 3:45 PM ET San Francisco -165 500
San Francisco -

Minnesota - 4:10 PM ET Kansas City -148 500
Kansas City - Over 8.5 500

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 05:43 PM

Rangers try to add to Cleveland slump

CLEVELAND INDIANS (72-73, +4.4 Units)

at TEXAS RANGERS (84-64, +2.7 Units)


First pitch: Wednesday, 7:05 p.m. EDT
Line: Texas -195, Cleveland +182, Total: 10

The first-place Texas Rangers will host the slumping Cleveland Indians at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on Wednesday night. Cleveland has lost six of eight and finds itself below .500 and 12½ games back of the Tigers in the AL Central.

David Huff (2-4, 3.05 ERA) will get the ball for the Indians on Wednesday night. Huff had a great outing in his only career start against the Rangers in April 2010, throwing a complete game and allowing four hits and two runs. Opposing Huff will be Derek Holland (13-5, 4.12 ERA) who has been hot as of late. Holland is 5-1 with a 2.95 ERA in his past nine starts. Cleveland has not fared well this season when labeled as an underdog (35-50). The Tribe are also a miserable 4-19 against the Rangers over the past three seasons, including 2-8 in Arlington. Texas, on the other hand, has the third-most home wins (47-29) in the majors and is tremendous as a favorite, going 67-44 (61%). The combination of a red-hot Holland and a Rangers team that rarely loses at home will equal a TEXAS victory on Wednesday night.

The FoxSheets provide a pair of three-star trends fading the Indians.

Road underdogs with a money line of +175 to +250 (CLEVELAND) - poor hitting team (AVG <=.260) against a good starting pitcher (ERA <=4.20) -AL, with a starting pitcher whose gives up 0.5 or less HR/start. (70-13 since 1997.) (84.3%, +43.1 units. Rating = 3*).

MANNY ACTA is 11-48 (18.6%, -36.2 Units) against the money line after allowing 10 runs or more in all games he has managed since 1997. The average score was ACTA 3.8, OPPONENT 5.9 - (Rating = 3*).

Huff has had some trouble recently, going 1-3 with a 5.23 ERA in his past four starts. Huff didn’t look too bad on Thursday against the White Sox when he threw 6.1 innings, allowing three runs but was given the loss in an 8-1 defeat. In Tuesday night’s game, Indians C Carlos Santana homered from both sides of the plate, but Cleveland still lost the season opener 10-4 because of some dreadful pitching.

In Holland’s past nine starts, he has limited opponents to three earned runs or less in seven of the nine outings. On Aug. 5, the tribe hit Holland hard, forcing him to leave the game after only pitching 1.2 frames and allowing six runs (four earned). Adrian Beltre has been scorching hot, batting .391 during a current 17-game hit streak, including home runs in three straight games.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 05:46 PM

Arizona goes for sweep in L.A.

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS (87-62, +27.9 Units)

at LOS ANGELES DODGERS (72-75, -5.1 Units)


First pitch: Wednesday, 10:10 p.m. EDT
Line: Los Angeles -140, Arizona +130, Total: 6

After winning the first two games of the three-game set, the Diamondbacks are looking for the sweep against the Dodgers as two of baseball’s hottest pitchers take the hill. Daniel Hudson will look to help the D-backs build on their 8½-game division lead, while Clayton Kershaw will do his best to prevent his division rivals from taking the brooms out.

Hudson has a 1.14 ERA during a four-start win streak, with his team winning six of the past eight times he has toed the rubber. The D-backs are a markedly superior team and deserve action on them as long as they are the underdog. They are 41-39 (+12.2 Units) as an underdog this year, 42-35 (+15.4 Units) on the road, and 67-43 (+26.6 Units) under the lights. Although Kershaw is also hot, he allowed four runs (two homers) in 6.1 innings the last time he faced this lineup on Aug. 7. Play on ARIZONA to sweep this series.

The FoxSheets provide a pair of three-star trends siding with the Diamondbacks.

ARIZONA is 16-3 (84.2%, +13.1 Units) against the money line when playing against a marginal losing team (Win Pct. 46% to 49%) in the second half of the season this season. The average score was ARIZONA 5.5, OPPONENT 3.3 - (Rating = 3*).

Home favorites with a money line of -125 to -175 (L.A. DODGERS) - with a starting pitcher whose winning percentage is better than 70%, starting a pitcher who walked <=1 hitters each of his last 2 outings. (83-64 since 1997.) (56.5%, +52.8 units. Rating = 3*).

If not for his teammate Ian Kennedy, and perhaps his opponent Clayton Kershaw, Hudson (16-9, 3.41 ERA) would be the hottest pitcher in baseball, with a 3-0 record, 0.78 ERA and 0.74 WHIP in his past three starts. Over those 23 innings, he struck out 20 and allowed just 11 hits. His career marks against the Dodgers bode well for that to continue. In two career starts against the Dodgers he is 2-0 with a 1.53 ERA, including a complete game on July 17 when he allowed one run and five hits.

Kershaw (18-5, 2.36 ERA) is also scorching right now, having given up four earned runs in his past six starts (0.78 ERA). The Dodgers have won 10 of his past 12 starts. The lefty has enjoyed facing the D-Backs in his career, going 5-2 with a 2.35 ERA and .201 opponents’ BA. He’s 2-1 with a 1.77 ERA in three starts this season. However, Arizona ranks eighth in baseball with 182 runs against southpaws.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:25185 Followers:33
09/14/2011 05:49 PM

Armadillo: Wednesday's six-pack

Updated Super Bowl odds from the Las Vegas Hilton:

4-1—Patriots—Their QB was very sharp in Miami.

5-1 Packers—The games with Detroit should be interesting.

8-1 Eagles—Emotional game for #7 this Sunday night in Atlanta.

10-1 Steelers—People tend to overreact to unusual Week 1 happenings. Pitt losing 35-7 is unusual.

10-1 Ravens—Trap game this week, in Tennessee’s home opener.

10-1 Chargers—Visit Patriot squad that gave up 390 passing yards to Chad Henne’s Dolphins Monday night, albeit lot of it late in game.


*************************


Armadillo: Wednesday's List of 13: Random mid-week NFL stuff.......

13) NFL teams combined to pass for 7,842 net yards last week (245.1 per team), most ever in one week. So much for the lockout hurting offenses.

12) ESPN has a new, more simpler QB rating system; top three in Week 1 were Fitzpatrick/Rodgers/Brady. Anyone who says they had Fitzpatrick in the Best QB Rating pool is a liar.

11) Was in the **** near my house after work Monday; saw 20-ish kid wearing a powder blue Lions jersey, with “SUH” on the back. Early bandwagon support for the Detroit team.

10) Oddly, Atlanta was the only team not to score an offensive TD in Week 1.

9) Buffalo had an enormous 23-yard edge in starting field position in Kansas City Sunday, starting five of their 12 drives in Chief territory, scoring three TDs and a FG on those five drives.

8) There were nine special teams TDs last week, five punt returns, three kick returns and a blocked punt. That’s a lot. Teams that had a special teams TD and didn’t allow one were 4-2.

7) Ted Ginn Jr returned a kickoff for a TD and then punt for a TD, all within 0:59 of elapsed gametime; he is the 12th player to have a KR/PR for TD in same game, but his came the closest together (previous closest was 8:52 of gametime).

6) Four teams (Packers-49ers-Ravens-Bengals) didn’t commit a turnover; all four won, scoring 34.4 ppg.

5) If you’re a Viking fan and you see 10 first downs and 28 passing yards in a game where your QB is in his 30’s, how can you be optimistic for this season? San Diego had more first downs (31) than Minnesota had passing yards.

4) How does every NFL team not carry three QB’s? Take the Rams; Bradford hurt his finger, emergency 3rd-stringer Amendola dislocated his elbow, leaving AJ Feeley as the only QB at the end of Sunday’s game. What would’ve happened if he got hurt? To me it should be a league rule that every team has a third emergency QB who can step in if the other two get hurt. That’s just common sense. Quality of game stuff.

3) Teams that led at halftime were 11-4 in Week 1; the Giant game was tied at the half.

2) Raiders had a 63-yard FG and a 77-yard punt in their narrow win in Denver; is Janikowski/Lechler the best kicker/punter combo on same team in NFL history?

1) Not counting give-up drives at the end of a half, 191 of 357 drives (53.5%) in Week 1 started 80+ yards from goal line; 40 more drives (11.2%) started in enemy territory. Need few more weeks to play out to accurately determine the effect of these rule changes, but over was 12-2-2 this week. That says a lot.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs: