cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 02:33 AM

Washington Nationals @ New York Mets

1:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

901 Washington (R) Zimmermann, J (3-0) (10-7) (4-4 A) W-1 -143 7.5 -140 7.5 n/a n/a n/a

902 N.Y. Mets (R) Gee, D (0-3) (8-8) (5-3 H) L-1 +133 +130 n/a n/a n/a

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Miami Marlins @ Cincinnati Reds

1:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

903 Miami (R) Sanabia, A (2-1) (4-14) (2-7 A) L-1 +210 8.5 +210 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

904 Cincinnati (R) Bailey, H (1-1) (10-8) (9-3 H) W-1 -225 -240 n/a n/a n/a

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Atlanta Braves @ Pittsburgh Pirates

1:35 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

905 Atlanta (R) Medlen, K (1-1) (13-4) (7-2 A) L-2 -185 7.5 -185 7.5 n/a n/a n/a

906 Pittsburgh (L) Sanchez, J (0-2) (9-8) (7-4 H) W-2 +175 +165 n/a n/a n/a

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Chicago Cubs @ Milwaukee Brewers

2:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

907 Chi. Cubs (R) Feldman, S (0-2) (5-11) (2-6 A) L-2 +135 8.5 +135 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

908 Milwaukee (R) Peralta, W (0-1) (8-8) (6-5 H) W-6 -145 -145 n/a n/a n/a

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San Diego Padres @ San Francisco Giants

4:05 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

909 San Diego (L) Stults, E (2-1) (5-12) (4-7 A) L-2 +157 8.0 +135 8 n/a n/a n/a

910 San Francisco (L) Zito, B (2-1) (11-7) (6-2 H) W-2 -167 -155 n/a n/a n/a

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Arizona Diamondbacks @ Colorado Rockies

4:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

911 Arizona (R) McCarthy, B (0-2) (9-8) (4-4 A) L-2 +121 10.0 +125 10.5 n/a n/a n/a

912 Colorado (R) Nicasio, J (2-0) (13-4) (8-0 H) W-8 -131 -145 n/a n/a n/a

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St. Louis Cardinals @ Philadelphia Phillies

8:05 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

913 St. Louis (R) Westbrook, J (1-1) (10-7) (6-5 A) W-1 -105 8.5 -115 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

914 Philadelphia (R) Kendrick, K (1-1) (7-11) (4-5 H) L-1 -105 +105 n/a n/a n/a

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New York Yankees @ Toronto Blue Jays

1:07 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

915 N.Y. Yankees (R) Nova, I (1-1) (10-6) (5-2 A) W-2 +128 8.5 +120 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

916 Toronto (R) Johnson, J (0-1) (7-11) (4-8 H) L-2 -138 -140 n/a n/a n/a

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Kansas City Royals @ Boston Red Sox

1:35 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

917 Kansas City (R) Santana, E (1-1) (8-7) (4-5 A) L-1 +134 8.5 +130 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

918 Boston (R) Dempster, R (0-1) (12-4) (5-2 H) W-7 -144 -150 n/a n/a n/a

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Oakland Athletics @ Tampa Bay Rays

1:40 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

919 Oakland (L) Milone, T (3-0) (12-6) (6-2 A) L-2 +102 8.5 +100 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

920 Tampa Bay (R) Carmona, F (0-3) (7-10) (5-3 H) W-2 -112 -110 n/a n/a n/a

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Cleveland Indians @ Houston Astros

2:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

921 Cleveland (R) Jimenez, U (0-2) (6-10) (4-4 A) W-1 -110 8.5 -110 9 n/a n/a n/a

922 Houston (L) Bedard, E (0-1) (5-12) (2-6 H) L-1 +100 +100 n/a n/a n/a

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Minnesota Twins @ Chicago White Sox

2:10 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

923 Minnesota (L) Diamond, S (0-1) (7-7) (3-4 A) W-3 +136 8.5 +130 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

924 Chi. White Sox (R) Floyd, G (0-3) (7-10) (4-3 H) L-2 -146 -150 n/a n/a n/a

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Seattle Mariners @ Texas Rangers

3:05 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

925 Seattle (R) Harang, A (0-1) (7-12) (3-6 A) L-2 +158 10.0 +155 9.5 n/a n/a n/a

926 Texas (R) Grimm, J (0-0) (11-6) (6-2 H) W-2 -168 -175 n/a n/a n/a

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Detroit Tigers @ Los Angeles Angels

3:35 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

927 Detroit (R) Fister, D (3-0) (9-8) (5-6 A) L-3 +113 8.5 +105 8 n/a n/a n/a

928 L.A. Angels (L) Wilson, C (1-0) (6-10) (4-4 H) W-2 -123 -115 n/a n/a n/a

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Los Angeles Dodgers @ Baltimore Orioles

1:35 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

929 L.A. Dodgers (R) Billingsley, C (1-0) (7-10) (3-5 A) L-6 +102 9.0 -115 8.5 n/a n/a n/a

930 Baltimore (R) Arrieta, J (1-0) (10-7) (5-3 H) W-3 -112 -105 n/a n/a n/a

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Kansas City Royals @ Boston Red Sox
7:05 PM Game Time Record Open Line Current Line Betting Trend

Teams Pitchers Win-Loss Streak ML O/U ML O/U Run Money O/U

931 Kansas City (R) Guthrie, J (2-0) (8-7) (4-5 A) L-1 +124 9.0 +125 9 n/a n/a n/a

932 Boston (R) Webster, A (0-0) (12-4) (5-2 H) W-7 -134 -145 n/a n/a n/a

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Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:00 AM

Preview: Yankees (10-6) at Blue Jays (7-11)

Game: 3
Venue: Rogers Centre
Date: April 21, 2013 1:07 PM EDT


It's been a happy homecoming for Vernon Wells, who will try to power the New York Yankees to a three-game sweep of the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday at Rogers Centre.

A fixture in the outfield for more than a decade with Toronto (7-11), Wells has spent the past two-plus seasons tormenting the Blue Jays - first with the Los Angeles Angels the last two years before joining the Yankees (10-6) in late March. He is hitting .242 in 15 lifetime games versus Toronto, but all five of his home runs and seven of his nine extra-base hits in those contests have come in nine games north of the border.

Wells was at the center of New York's 5-3, 11-inning victory Saturday, scoring the go-ahead run on a two-run throwing error by losing pitcher Aaron Loup after leading off the inning with a single. He also homered for the second time in this series and is 5 for 10 with four runs scored in the two wins.

"You know what, you get in the moment and you make an aggressive play like that and sometimes it works out,' Wells said. "You look great when it works out and bad when it doesn't.'

Wells' limited track record versus Blue Jays scheduled starter Josh Johnson (0-1, 6.91 ERA) isn't much, going 1 for 6 with two walks as the Yankees try to complete their first series sweep at Toronto of at least three games since Aug. 26-28, 2004. Johnson is still seeking his first win with Toronto since being acquired from Miami in the offseason, but the right-hander appears to be on the right track. He did not get a decision Tuesday versus Chicago after limiting the White Sox to two runs and four hits in seven innings before the Blue Jays eventually lost 4-3.

"I was just more aggressive overall," Johnson told MLB's official website. "Fastball, curveball, slider, everything was going - not just to the catcher but through the catcher and through the zone. That was the main focus for this start, and it worked out."

Johnson, who has allowed homers in each of his two outings at home, won his only start against the Yankees back in 2009.

The Yankees go for the sweep behind Ivan Nova (1-1, 5.59), who will try to build on his last outing and win consecutive starts. He worked in and out of trouble Tuesday to get a win versus Arizona, allowing two runs and seven hits with two walks in five innings.

"It feels really good," Nova said of notching the victory. "I was joking with the guys - I don't remember when the last time was that I won a ballgame. I know that I didn't go far enough in the game. It's something we will keep working on. Hopefully, this is a good sign for me."

While Nova has a 17-8 lifetime road record, he has lost his last away from the Bronx dating back to last year, giving up 14 runs and 18 hits over 15 1-3 innings. One of those defeats came at Toronto on Sept. 27 after yielding four runs and six hits in 4 2-3 innings of a 6-0 defeat.

Nova's last road win, though, also came at Rogers Centre, where he struck out 10 in 7 1-3 innings of a 5-2 win Aug. 11. He is 3-2 with a 4.00 ERA in six starts and seven lifetime appearances versus Toronto.

Edwin Encarnacion is 6 for 15 lifetime against Nova, while ex-Yankee Melky Cabrera is 3 for 5 with two homers and a double.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:01 AM

Preview: Nationals (10-7) at Mets (8-8)

Game: 3
Venue: Citi Field
Date: April 21, 2013 1:10 PM EDT


The last time the Washington Nationals had a pitcher win his first four starts of a season, it was 16 years ago and they were the Montreal Expos.

Bryce Harper may have a big role in Jordan Zimmermann accomplishing that feat.

Coming off his second two-homer game of the season, Harper will try give Zimmermann some help at the plate, as the Nationals go for a second straight win over the New York Mets in Sunday's finale.

Zimmermann (3-0, 2.45 ERA) is off to the best start of his career, and his win total is just one shy of the rest of the rotation.

Matching that total Sunday would make the right-hander the first member of the Nationals franchise to win his first four starts of a season since Pedro Martinez won his first eight of 1997, en route to the NL Cy Young Award.

Zimmermann was impressive again Monday, tossing 103 pitches to complete a six-hitter in a 10-3 win at Miami.

"It means a lot," Zimmermann said of his second career complete game and first since 2011. "It means I'm doing my job staying in the game and putting up zeros. It's the kind of pitcher I want to be. I want to be a workhorse and someone who can eat up innings."

He's also been helped by the lineup, which has backed him with 18 total runs through three games, scoring six in the first inning.

"It's a lot easier to pitch when you get runs early in the game," Zimmermann said.

Harper and the offense may be primed for another big performance after all seven of Washington's hits during Saturday's 7-6 win went for extra bases, including four homers.

Harper doubled and had two homers with three RBIs on Saturday after going 0 for 4 in Friday's 7-1 loss to open this series. He also went deep twice in a 2-0 season-opening win over Miami on April 1.

"He beats you in many ways, not just home runs," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "If he gets on base he can steal a base or two as well. He's a dangerous player."

Last year's NL Rookie of the Year, Harper is hitting .371 with seven homers and 14 RBIs this season, and he owns a .333 average with three homers and seven RBIs in eight visits to Citi Field.

The Nationals (10-7) have also enjoyed visiting Flushing, winning 13 of the last 15 there thanks in large part to a 2.01 ERA while limiting New York to .194 at the plate.

Each of Zimmermann's last five starts against the Mets have ended in wins for Washington, while he's 1-0 with a 1.55 ERA.

The Mets (8-8) are looking to take a three-game series from the Nationals for the first time since winning two of three in the nation's capital from Sept. 2-4, 2011.

They're scheduled to give the ball to Dillon Gee (0-3, 8.36), who is 0-1 with a 6.19 ERA in his last three starts against Washington after winning the first three of his career with a 1.27 ERA.

The right-hander, who will be facing Harper for the first time, is also on the verge of becoming the first Met to lose his first four starts in April since Steve Trachsel in 2001.

Gee's struggles continued Tuesday, when he was tagged for five runs and seven hits in 4 2-3 innings of an 8-4 loss at Colorado.

Daniel Murphy is batting .355 with 12 RBIs and 17 runs after getting three hits in this series. The second baseman is 7 for 21 with two doubles and a homer off Zimmermann.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:03 AM

Preview: Marlins (4-14) at Reds (10-8)

Game: 4
Venue: Great American Ball Park
Date: April 21, 2013 1:10 PM EDT


It's been an up-and-down start thus far for the Cincinnati Reds, who will try to stay on the "up" end Sunday by taking a third of four games from the Miami Marlins in Sunday's finale

The reigning NL Central champions raced to a 5-2 start, averaging 7.3 runs, and promptly dropped five in a row. Cincinnati (10-8) has since regrouped to win five of six, this time on the strength of strong pitching as it has posted a 1.40 ERA with 58 strikeouts in 58 innings.

Manager Dusty Baker's bullpen provided five shutout innings in Saturday's 3-2, 13-inning victory, helping the Reds overcome stranding 17 runners and going 1 for 12 with runners in scoring position. Baker credited starter Bronson Arroyo for giving his relievers a chance to be effective after throwing eight innings.

"Bronson pitched a heck of a game,' said Baker, whose pitchers have allowed two runs or fewer in six consecutive games, the longest stretch since a six-game streak from July 10 through July 19, 2010. "He kept some pretty good hitters off balance.'

Homer Bailey (1-1, 3.32 ERA) has contributed a solid outing as well during this run, scattering two singles around a season-high 10 strikeouts in 89 pitches over eight innings Tuesday against Philadelphia. The right-hander, though, had nothing to show for it as the game was suspended in the middle of the ninth tied at zero and eventually won by the Reds the following night.

"When you're on the same page as your catcher, I can kind of sit back and almost go into cruise control, where all I have to think about is executing pitches," Bailey told the Reds' official website. "Being able to go out there and just execute pitches if that's your only mindset makes something very hard a little bit easier. Trying to make pitches is extremely hard."

Bailey, who did not face the Marlins last year, is 1-1 with a 2.84 ERA in four lifetime starts against them.

Marlins counterpart Alex Sanabia (2-1, 4.24) has a similar track record to Bailey in the early part of the season with two strong starts around a terrible one. The right-hander limited Washington to two runs and six hits in six innings of an 8-2 victory on Tuesday and has half of Miami's four wins.

Sanabia has essentially had one bad inning thus far, yielding six of his eight runs in an 8-0 loss to Atlanta on April 10. He has struggled getting the first out of the inning, allowing leadoff hitters to go 8 for 17 thus far.

The Marlins (4-14) have been held to three or fewer runs in 15 of 18 games, partly due to the on-going struggles of slugger Giancarlo Stanton. He had an infield single in six at_bats Saturday, raising his average by a point to .163, and has no RBIs and 17 strikeouts in 12 games.

"He is an unbelievable player. He is going to hit,' manager Mike Redmond said. "He's our big bat. He's just in a funk and we've got to get him out of it.'

Stanton, who has gone eight games without an extra-base hit, is 1 for 5 lifetime versus Bailey.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:04 AM

Preview: Dodgers (7-10) at Orioles (10-7)

Game: 3
Venue: Oriole Park at Camden Yards
Date: April 21, 2013 1:35 PM EDT


Playing in AL ballparks has presented plenty of problems for the Los Angeles Dodgers in recent years, and Camden Yards has been no exception this weekend.

Los Angeles tries to avoid matching its longest losing streak from last season and notch a rare road interleague win Sunday against the Baltimore Orioles.

Favored by many to win their first NL West title since 2009, the high-priced Dodgers have fallen short of expectations early on.

They won seven of their first 11 games but have been unable to maintain that success, losing six straight by a combined 36-13 score.

The skid continued with a pair of losses Saturday, as Los Angeles (7-10) squandered a four-run lead in a 7-5 loss in the opener of a split doubleheader before falling 6-1 in the nightcap.

Those defeats dropped the Dodgers to 7-19 in road interleague games since the start of 2010. They've lost seven of eight overall against the opposite league.

"There is a time when you feel like you just need a win,' manager Don Mattingly said. "Really, this feels like one of those times. We just need to put a win on the board and get out of this.'

Los Angeles, which lost seven in a row June 24-30, went 2 for 10 with runners in scoring position in the doubleheader and is 7 for 43 (.163) during the losing streak.

Manny Machado matched career highs with three hits and four RBIs Saturday night, falling a triple shy of the cycle for the Orioles (10-7), winners of a season-high three straight and seven of 10.

Baltimore has won 11 of 16 in interleague play.

"We've got to come out and be greedy and get the sweep,' center fielder Adam Jones said.

Chris Davis hit his seventh homer - a 448-foot shot - in the nightcap and is 7 for 15 in his last four games. He leads the AL with seven homers and 21 RBIs.

Davis will get his first look at Chad Billingsley (1-0, 3.00 ERA), who was effective in two starts against San Diego since he was activated from the disabled list April 10 due to a bruised right index finger. He gave up a three-run homer to pitcher Eric Stults and six other hits over six innings Monday before leaving without a decision in a 6-3 loss.

The righty is 7-7 with a 4.24 ERA in 20 interleague starts, yielding 11 runs and 18 hits over 11 innings in losing the last two.

This will be his first appearance against the Orioles.

Baltimore's Jake Arrieta (1-0, 5.40) will try to build on his first win of the season, though he hopes to be far more efficient. The right-hander surrendered a home run on the first pitch he threw, walked five and needed 112 pitches to complete five innings but still beat Tampa Bay 5-4 on Tuesday. He allowed just the one run and struck out seven to earn his first victory since June 13.

"The win is the biggest part of the night,' said Arrieta, who has pitched five innings in each of his three starts - all Baltimore victories. "I would have liked to be out there a little bit longer but the pitch count got up."

He went 1-2 with a 4.65 ERA in five starts against the NL last season, but allowed one run in three of those outings.

Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford have fared very well against Arrieta. Gonzalez is 5 for 11 and Crawford is 4 for 7, with both hitting a home run.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:06 AM

Preview: Royals (8-7) at Red Sox (12-4)

Game: 3
Venue: Fenway Park
Date: April 21, 2013 7:05 PM EDT


The Boston Red Sox not only made their emotional return to Fenway Park on Saturday, they did so in winning fashion against the Kansas City Royals.

Boston can match its longest winning streak in two years by sweeping Sunday's split doubleheader from Kansas City.

The twin bill was scheduled to make up for Friday's game, which was postponed as authorities continued to search for and eventually found the second suspect from Monday's bombings at the Boston Marathon.

Saturday marked the first home game for the Red Sox (12-4) since Monday's events, with Fenway playing host to pregame ceremonies to honor the victims. Those ceremonies included a passionate speech from David Ortiz, who then went 2 for 4 in his season debut as he helped Boston to a 4-3 victory.

The win was the Red Sox's seventh straight, their longest streak since they won nine in a row June 3-12, 2011.

Ortiz's RBI single tied the game at one in the sixth before Daniel Nava's three-run homer in the eighth off Kelvin Herrera eventually paved the way for the victory.

"Driving around and looking around at people's faces, it was a very emotional day here just looking at those guys that were injured by those bombs going off and watching the news nearly every day, it was painful, very painful," said Ortiz, who played in his first major league game since Aug. 24 as he dealt with a right Achilles tendon injury. "Today I could see people opening their chest and letting it go."

While the Royals (8-7) have lost four of six, being a part of Saturday's emotional festivities seemed to take precedent over defeat.

"To go through and see everybody getting into it and what this city went through, just to be a part of it was amazing," said Lorenzo Cain, who went 4 for 4 with a solo homer off of closer Andrew Bailey in the ninth.

The Red Sox will send Ryan Dempster to the mound in Sunday's opener while the Royals will answer with Ervin Santana, with both teams seeking a continuation of strong pitching after solid outings Saturday. James Shields gave up one run on four hits over six innings for Kansas City while Clay Buchholz held the Royals to two runs on eight hits in eight innings.

Dempster (0-1, 2.65 ERA) will also look to continue Boston's streak of starters giving up three or fewer runs in all 16 contests so far. Though he's yet to record a victory with his new team, Dempster is coming off his best outing of the season as he limited Tampa Bay to a run on two hits in seven innings while striking out 10 in a 3-2 victory Monday. A blown save by Bailey squandered Dempster's bid for his first win with Boston, though he wasn't deterred.

"Anytime I can start a ballgame and we win that ballgame, that's all that matters," Dempster, 2-0 with a 4.00 ERA in three starts against the Royals, told the team's official website.

Santana (1-1, 2.45) is also fresh off a good showing, throwing eight innings against Toronto while giving up two runs on seven hits in a 3-2 victory last Sunday. He is 3-3 with a 4.13 ERA in 11 starts against the Red Sox.

Boston will send 23-year-old Allen Webster to the mound in the nightcap in his major league debut. Webster, who will be recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket, was acquired from the Dodgers in last year's trade that sent Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and Carl Crawford to Los Angeles. The right-hander owns a 0.90 ERA with 12 strikeouts in 10 innings over two outings for Pawtucket.

Webster will be opposed by the much more experienced Jeremy Guthrie (2-0, 3.20), who is 3-7 with a 4.96 ERA in 18 starts against the Red Sox, though two of those victories have come in the last three.

Ortiz will likely feel comfortable facing Guthrie, as he's 13 for 38 (.342) with five doubles and three homers against him. Meanwhile, Kansas City's Chris Getz has 10 hits in 23 career at_bats against Santana.

Outfielder Shane Victorino left Saturday's game with tightness in his lower back after trying to lay down a bunt, and he'll be reevaluated prior to the doubleheader, Boston manager John Farrell said.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:07 AM

Preview: Braves (13-4) at Pirates (9-8)

Game: 4
Venue: PNC Park
Date: April 21, 2013 1:35 PM EDT


The Atlanta Braves are still tied for baseball's best record, but they find themselves in an unfamiliar spot thanks to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pittsburgh handed Atlanta its first consecutive losses of the season and will look to extend the Braves' slide to three straight games Sunday at PNC Park in the finale of a four-game set.

The Pirates (9-8) have won six of eight and inched above the .500 mark for the first time this season with Saturday's 3-1 victory. Starters James McDonald and Paul Maholm were locked in a pitchers' duel until the Pirates broke through in the sixth. Maholm had surrendered two hits while throwing five shutout innings before allowing three runs, including a two-run homer to Gaby Sanchez - his first of the season. Sanchez had come in struggling, batting .174 with four hits in 12 games.

"It was a matter of our hitters sticking with the game plan," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said.

The Braves' 13-4 mark is tied with Colorado for the best in the majors, but their powerful offense has been somewhat halted of late. They were shut out in two of three prior to Saturday and the club produced just six hits in two losses to the Pirates.

Atlanta was 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position Saturday, didn't have an at-bat in such a situation in Friday's 6-0 loss and was 1 for 7 in a 6-4 win on Thursday.

The Braves only came away with one run in Friday's second inning in which they drew three walks against McDonald, who fanned two in a row to end the threat.

"It's been a couple of days where we can't get the big hit," said Chris Johnson, who is 21 for 45 (.467) over his last 11 games after starting the season 2 for 10. "We just have to focus in and get some hits with some guys on base. We'll be fine. We've proven we can score runs."

Pittsburgh starter Jonathan Sanchez (0-2, 12.96 ERA) will hope to pick up some good mojo from the rest of the starting staff, which has been dealing of late. McDonald struck out nine over six innings and Wandy Rodriguez allowed one hit in seven scoreless innings Friday. A.J. Burnett shut out St. Louis over seven innings of one-hit ball in a 5-0 win Wednesday.

Sanchez, however, was tagged for nine runs, eight hits and four walks in 3 1-3 innings in a 10-2 loss at Arizona on April 10. The left-hander's first chance for redemption was thwarted as Tuesday's game against the Cardinals was rained out after two innings.

He'll be opposed by Kris Medlen (1-1, 1.42), who has only received five runs of support in three starts. Though Atlanta won each of his last two, he wasn't credited with a victory in the Braves' 6-3 win over Kansas City on Tuesday. Medlen yielded two runs and six hits with no walks in seven frames.

Medlen is 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA in two starts against Pittsburgh, while Sanchez is 1-2 with a 5.06 ERA over seven starts versus Atlanta. Sanchez's only victory over the Braves came on May 25, 2009, with San Francisco.

Atlanta second baseman Dan Uggla told the team's official website he hopes to return Monday against the Rockies after leaving Saturday's game in the fourth inning with tightness in his left calf.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:09 AM

Preview: Athletics (12-6) at Rays (7-10)

Game: 3
Venue: Tropicana Field
Date: April 21, 2013 1:40 PM EDT


The Tampa Bay Rays have cooled off the Oakland Athletics and continue to build some much-needed momentum at the same time.

Looking to complete a three-game sweep, the Rays try to prevent Oakland's Tommy Milone from starting 4-0 on Sunday at Tropicana Field.

Tampa Bay (7-10) has bounced back nicely from a 2-7 road trip by winning the first two of a weekend set versus Oakland (12-6), which carried a three-game winning streak into the series and was 6-0 on the road.

The Rays have not swept a three-game set from the A's at home since 2005.

One night after matching a season high for runs in an 8-3 win, the Rays got seven strong innings from Jeremy Hellickson and a homer by Matt Joyce during Saturday's 1-0 win. All three Oakland hits came off Hellickson, who struck out six and walked one.

"We're going to take a win any way we can get it,' Joyce said.

"To know you can pitch play defense well enough to make one run stand, it's a good confidence builder.'

To help his team unwind and relax, Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon brought a disc jockey into the clubhouse to provide some pregame entertainment.

"I want our guys to chill out a little bit, go out there and play hard and not be afraid of making mistakes - ever,' Maddon said. "This is my way of getting the point across.'

Joyce is batting .316 (6 for 19) in his last five games after going 4 for 30 (.133) in his first 10.

Teammate Evan Longoria did not homer, but had a hit and has reached base safely in all 17 games.

Longoria has never faced Milone (3-0, 3.86 ERA), who allowed two runs and struck out six in 6 2-3 innings of an 11-2 win over Houston on Monday to improve to 5-0 with a 3.11 ERA in his last eight regular-season starts.

"You pretty much know what you're going to get out of Tommy every time he goes out there,' Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. "He works quick, he knows what he wants to do and has conviction in what he's doing. Since the day he's gotten here his first spring training he's been a model of consistency.'

Though the left-hander split his two appearances against the Rays last season, he posted an 8.18 ERA in those starts.

The A's averaged 8.5 runs and 12.7 hits while sweeping Houston and the Los Angeles Angels in their first road trip, but did not have a hit past the fourth inning Saturday.

Coco Crisp went 0 for 4 to snap his 12-game hitting streak, but he's 9 for 22 (.409) with a double and home run against scheduled Tampa Bay starter Roberto Hernandez (0-3, 5.79).

The right-hander allowed five runs - three earned - and walked three while striking out seven in 5 1-3 innings of a 5-4 loss at Baltimore on Tuesday.

Formerly known as Fausto Carmona, Hernandez is 4-7 with a 5.14 ERA in 12 starts versus Oakland.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:10 AM

Preview: Twins (7-7) at White Sox (7-10)

Game: 3
Venue: U.S. Cellular Field
Date: April 21, 2013 2:10 PM EDT


Joe Mauer has been locked in at the plate lately for the Minnesota Twins.

Given his history against Chicago White Sox scheduled starter Gavin Floyd, he seems to be in good shape to extend his hitting streak to 11 games Sunday at U.S. Cellular Field.

After Friday's series opener was postponed because of cold and windy conditions, the Twins (7-7) won 2-1 in 10 innings Saturday. Ryan Doumit led off the 10th with a double and came around to score the winning run on Alexei Ramirez's throwing error.

It was the third straight victory for Minnesota, though it hadn't played since Tuesday because of a pair of postponements and a scheduled off day.

"It has been a weird stretch," Ron Gardenhire told the Twins' official website. "You just have to scratch your way through it and get a win one way or another."

Despite three straight days off, Mauer didn't seem to miss a beat Saturday, going 2 for 4 with a pair of walks. The three-time AL batting champ has a 10-game hitting streak and is batting .577 (15 for 26) in the last six.

He enjoys batting at U.S. Cellular, reaching safely in each of his last 13 games there for a .349 average with 16 walks for a .525 on-base percentage. He has also regularly tormented Floyd (0-3, 6.32 ERA).

Mauer is hitting .442 with three homers and four doubles in 43 career at_bats against Floyd - his highest average against any pitcher he has faced at least 35 times. Floyd has also walked Mauer 10 times.

Floyd is having similar trouble getting batters out in his last two games, as opponents have a .480 OBP.

Against Toronto on Monday, the right-hander allowed four runs, nine hits - including two homers - and three walks in a season-low 4 1-3 innings in a 4-3 loss.

Floyd, who is trying to avoid losing four consecutive starts in a single season for the first time in his 10-year career, posted a 1.38 ERA in winning his last two starts against the Twins. He had an 8.86 ERA in losing each of his previous eight starts in the series.

Minnesota counters with Scott Diamond (0-1, 8.31), who yielded four runs and eight hits in 4 1-3 innings in last Saturday's 4-2 loss to the New York Mets - his lone outing of the season. The left-hander went 1-3 with a 5.70 ERA in four starts against the White Sox (7-10) in 2012.

Alejandro De Aza and Alex Rios each went 5 for 11 off Diamond a year ago, while Adam Dunn was 3 for 10 with a home run.

De Aza had a leadoff homer Saturday, but Chicago managed just five other hits while striking out 13 times.

The White Sox lost for just the fourth time in 11 games when hitting a homer. They're 0-6 when they don't go deep.

"All it's going to take is a few big hits here and there to ease the tension, a few big homers,' said Jake Peavy, who allowed a run over seven innings Saturday. "We live and die with the home run and we just haven't hit many of them here of late. In the games we have won, we won it with the long ball.'

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24956 Followers:33
04/21/2013 11:12 AM

Preview: Cubs (5-11) at Brewers (8-8)

Game: 3
Venue: Miller Park
Date: April 21, 2013 2:10 PM EDT


While the streaking Milwaukee Brewers will try to sweep another home series against division rival Chicago, Wily Peralta is hoping a matchup with the Cubs will help him earn his first win of the season.

After a solid performance against Chicago earlier this month, the right-hander will try to duplicate that effort while leading the Brewers to a seventh straight win Sunday afternoon.

A 5-1 victory Saturday was Milwaukee's seventh in a row at Miller Park against the Cubs and 17th in the last 19 matchups there. The hot-hitting Jonathan Lucroy hit an early solo homer, and the Brewers (8-8) took advantage of three errors.

Milwaukee is the first team since the 1977 New York Yankees to reach the .500 mark in its 16th game after dropping eight of its first 10.

"We're making the most of some of the things that have happened the last couple of days," manager Ron Roenicke said. "We're playing better ball, and we're getting some breaks."

Peralta (0-1, 6.19 ERA) will try to follow by earning his first win since Sept. 16. While he's one of the Brewers' top prospects, the right-hander's performance in his most recent start hardly looked promising.

Peralta was charged with a career-high six runs, seven hits and three walks over four-plus innings in Milwaukee's 10-8 win over San Francisco on Tuesday.

"When you have that kind of score and you've got a chance to get a win and you don't get it, that's frustrating," Peralta told the team's website. "But that's going to happen. You forget about it and get ready for the next one."

Peralta, who had a 2.93 ERA in his previous seven major league starts, performed a little better in his only start against Chicago on April 9. He gave up three runs over 6 2-3 innings but the Brewers fell 6-3, their only loss in four games versus the Cubs (5-11) this season.

Peralta is slated to pitch opposite Scott Feldman (0-2, 6.00), who had to skip one start due to tightness in his back. The right-hander hasn't made it through the fifth inning in his first two outings for the Cubs.

He allowed six runs - two earned - over 4 1-3 innings in a 7-6 loss to San Francisco on April 11. Feldman, though, shined in his only start against Milwaukee on June 12, 2010, while with Texas.

He pitched six scoreless innings and struck out six in a 4-3 win at Miller Park, one of his four in 15 starts against NL opponents.

Lucroy will try to keep Feldman from earning another win while adding to his recent turnaround. After batting .167 in his first nine games, the Brewers catcher is 9 for 24 (.375) with three homers and seven RBIs during a six-game hit streak.

Lucroy singled in one of his two at_bats against Feldman while Yuniesky Betancourt is 5 for 16 (.313) with two doubles versus the right-hander.

The Cubs' Starlin Castro, who enters this game with a major league-best 12-game hit streak, went 1 for 4 against Peralta in the win earlier this month.

The Cubs have committed seven of their 15 errors against the Brewers.

"We just have to make plays when we have a chance," starting pitcher Edwin Jackson said. "It is just a matter of going out and doing it."

Milwaukee hasn't won seven straight since July 26-Aug. 1, 2011, a stretch that began with a three-game home sweep over Chicago.

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