MLB Network has a primetime AL East tilt as the New York Yankees take on the Tampa Bay Rays and then action from the west coast with an important matchup between the Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
Matchup: New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays
Date/Time: September 15, 7:10 p.m. ET
TV: MLB Network
MLB Betting Odds From 5Dimes Sportsbook
Probable Starters: NYY: Chris Capuano (2-3, 4.90) v. TB: Alex Colome (1-0, 2.79)
Moneyline: Tampa Bay -115
The New York Yankees are running out of time to make a push in the AL Wild Card chase as they trail by five games with just 14 games left in the 2014 regular season. The Tampa Bay Rays are on track for their first losing season since 2007. The two teams will begin their final series against each other on Monday night with a matchup between Chris Capuano and Alex Colome. The Rays are 9-7 in head-to-head matchups this season.
It’s been a long season for the Yankees on the injury front as the Bronx Bombers have been forced to use 33 different pitchers. One of them, Chris Capuano, was picked up off the free agent wire and thrust into the rotation. Capuano is one of 13 Yankees to start a game this season. Capuano is 1-2 with a 5.13 ERA in nine starts for the Yankees, though he’s posted a 4/1 K/BB ratio. He’s given up four runs in each of his last two starts, including his last start which lasted just one-third of an inning as he retired one of the seven batters he faced. That start came against these same Tampa Bay Rays.
Alex Colome will be making his second start of the season for the Rays and his first since June 27, when he started the second game of a doubleheader. He allowed one run on two hits over 5.2 innings of work against the Baltimore Orioles. Colome had been pitching in the Triple-A playoffs for the Durham Bulls, so the Rays opted to let him experience those playoff starts rather than pitch for a Major League team well out of the race. Colome was suspended during Spring Training for using a banned substance. He was 7-6 with a 3.77 ERA in 15 starts for Durham.
Capuano will be facing the Rays for the sixth time overall and fourth as a starter. He hasn’t had much success with a 0-1 record and an 8.36 ERA. This season, Capuano has faced the Rays three times, once as a starter, and has allowed four runs on four hits in just 2.2 innings. The Yankees are 5-4 in Capuano’s nine starts for a modest profit of 0.19 units.
Colome faced the Yankees once last season and allowed three unearned runs in 4.1 innings of work. He did walk five batters, however. This will be the right-hander’s second career start at Tropicana Field. The Rays were victorious in Colome’s lone start this year for a profit of 1.31 units.
Free MLB Pick: New York Yankees
Alex Colome is a promising arm with some good raw stuff, but it is plenty raw and he sometimes has a hard time commanding it. With just a couple of starts to make an impression for next season, Colome could grip the ball a bit too hard in this outing. The Yankees know that they have no margin for error and a veteran like Capuano will try to keep his team in the hunt as long as possible.
Matchup: Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Date/Time: September 15, 10:05 p.m. ET
TV: MLB Network
MLB Betting Odds From 5Dimes Sportsbook
Probable Starters: SEA: Hisashi Iwakuma (14-7, 3.11) v. LAA: Matt Shoemaker (15-4, 3.16)
Moneyline: Los Angeles -108
The league’s top pitching matchup of the night will be at Angel Stadium where Hisashi Iwakuma and the surging Mariners battle Matt Shoemaker and the red-hot Angels. With some help from an Oakland slump, both the Mariners and Angels are in good positions for the AL playoffs. The Mariners trail the Kansas City Royals by one game for the second Wild Card spot and the Angels have opened up a 10-game lead on the A’s in the AL West and a four-game lead over Baltimore for home-field advantage.
From August 5 to September 8, the Mariners were 22-9 to go from 57-54 to 78-63. Hisashi Iwakuma has been a big part of the Mariners season. The Mariners have a +100 run differential, even though they are one of seven teams with less than 600 runs scored. Iwakuma has not been as good as he was last season by traditional metrics, but his advanced stats suggest that he has been better. In 165.1 innings this season, Iwakuma has walked just 16 batters. His season started late due to an injury, but since his second start of the season, Iwakuma has never finished a start with an ERA above 3.48.
Where would the Angels be without Matt Shoemaker? Garrett Richards went down, CJ Wilson has had plenty of problems, and Tyler Skaggs is on the 60-day DL. Shoemaker spent the majority of his career in the minor leagues prior to this season and he’s 15-4 with a 3.16 ERA and he’s 13-3 with a 3.01 ERA in 19 starts. In 10 starts and one relief appearance since the All-Star Break, Shoemaker is 8-2 with a 1.95 ERA. He has allowed only 59 baserunners in 64.2 innings in that span and has a 57/9 K/BB ratio. The Angels desperately needed some quality rotation innings and Shoemaker has exceeded any and all expectations.
Iwakuma is a perfect 5-0 with a 1.67 ERA in seven starts and one relief appearance against the Angels. In a span of 49.1 innings, Iwakuma has posted a 10/1 K/BB ratio with 40 strikeouts and four walks. This season, Iwakuma has a quality start of seven innings with two runs allowed against the Angels. The Mariners are 16-9 in Iwakuma’s 25 starts for a profit of 4.35 units.
Shoemaker has a couple of starts and one relief appearance against the Mariners to his name. In 12.2 innings, Shoemaker has a 1-0 record and a 2.13 ERA. This season, Shoemaker is 1-0 with a 3.52 ERA. He gave up three runs on four hits in 5.1 innings in his lone start this season against the Mariners on May 29. The Angels are 15-4 in Shoemaker’s 19 starts for a profit of 11.21 units, making him the third-most profitable pitcher this season.
Free MLB Pick: Seattle Mariners
Take one look at the line and it tells a story. The Mariners are a virtual pick’em against the league’s best team in this game and it’s because of the respect that Iwakuma gets. That should be pretty telling for bettors because Shoemaker has been outstanding in his own right. We all win with this pitching matchup, but the oddsmakers are suggesting a play on the Mariners given the line.