Major League Baseball has a very long season, but that doesn’t mean things can’t change quickly. Remember a couple months ago when Don Mattingly was on the chopping block and the Dodgers were the most disappointing team in baseball? Now, the Dodgers are seen as a real World Series contender and some have even said Mattingly should be NL Manager of the Year.

Boston and Tampa Bay are jockeying for position at the top of the American League East. Baltimore is still waiting in the wings, but the Yankees are starting to lose touch. The National League East has been one of the biggest disappointments in baseball as a division. The Braves are running away with the division thanks to disappointing performances from both the Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies.

BangtheBook wants to give baseball bettors some extra information to try to stay ahead of the books this year. This MLB betting article will be done twice a week during the baseball season to give you trends to consider before wagering your money on baseball. Let’s look at trends to consider for series’ this week.

-St. Louis visits Pittsburgh in the biggest series of the week. The Cardinals are one and a half games ahead of the Pirates. Pittsburgh is trying to avoid a late season meltdown for the third straight year. The Cardinals are just 2-5 in their last 7 against the Pirates. Pittsburgh is 22-10 in their last 32 home games.

-The Los Angeles Angels visit the Texas Rangers this week. Los Angeles has been very disappointing all season, while the Rangers have been really struggling of late. Jeff Weaver and Matt Garza meet in a big pitching matchup on Monday night. The Angels are just 4-11 in Weaver’s last 15 road starts in Texas.

-Cincinnati will be in San Diego this week after losing 3 out of 4 to the Dodgers this past weekend. Cincinnati is 6-0 in their last 6 games against right-handed pitching. The Reds have been baffled by lefties of late, but they’ll face some right-handers this week in San Diego. The Reds are 6-1 in their last 7 meetings with the Padres.

-The Atlanta Braves haven’t been very good on the road this year, but they have been almost automatic at home. Atlanta is 44-17 in their last 61 home games. Colorado is in town this week, and the Rockies are just 6-13 in their last 19 road games.

-Kansas City is doing its best to stay on the fringe of the AL Central race. The Royals are 6-0 in their last 6 games. Kansas City has been one of baseball’s streakiest teams all year. They’ll have to avoid another major slump if they want to stay in contention for a playoff spot. Kansas City is 10-4 in their last 14 against Minnesota, and they’ll face the Twins this week.

-The red hot Dodgers will host the New York Yankees in an important series for both teams this week. The Dodgers haven’t just been beating up on bad teams. Los Angeles is an impressive 10-1 in their last 11 games against a team with a winning record.

-Seattle is 10-3 in their last 13 games overall. The Mariners will get a big test starting Tuesday as they take on the Boston Red Sox in Fenway Park. Boston is 21-8 in their last 29 home games.