Today in the Daily Sports Roundup: Major League Baseball launches its second stage of interleague play, while the World Cup gets going in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
Chasing World Cup glory . . .
The World Cup kicks off on Friday with two games on tap: South Africa vs. Mexico (10am ET), and Uruguay vs. France (2:30pm ET). The host nation is a +175 underdog against Mexico (+145) in the opening match, with the draw odds set at +225. France is then favored at EVEN odds over Uruguay (+265) in the second game of the day, with those draw odds at +225 as well. Those four teams make up Group A of the tournament, with France set as the +125 favorite to win that division. Mexico is next at +275, followed by Uruguay at +350, and then South Africa down at the bottom at +600.
Meeting up on the diamond . . .
Interleague play resumes around Major League Baseball on Friday, with a schedule that includes a Bay Area matchup between the Athletics and Giants in San Francisco. Oakland is expected to send Gio Gonzalez (6-3, 3.58 ERA) to the mound for that contest, with the Giants countering with ace Tim Lincecum (5-2, 3.20 ERA). Lefthander Gonzalez beat the Twins in his last trip to the mound (two runs over seven innings), and he also beat the Giants back on May 22 (eight shutout innings). Righthander Lincecum took a no-decision in his last outing against the Pirates, surrendering three earned runs on six hits over seven innings of work in that contest, and striking out six.
Arizona hosts St. Louis in the NL-only matchup for Friday, while the rest of the interleague slate has the Mets at Baltimore, the White Sox at the Cubs, Pittsburgh at Detroit, Washington at Cleveland, Florida at Tampa Bay, Philadelphia at Boston, Kansas City at Cincinnati, Texas at Milwaukee, Atlanta at Minnesota, Toronto at Colorado, Seattle at San Diego, the Angels at the Dodgers, and Houston at the Yankees. The Astros' Brett Myers (4-3, 3.01 ERA) is set to take on New York's Andy Pettitte (7-1, 2.47 ERA) in that last matchup. Houston is 7-3 in Myers' last 10 trips to the mound, while the Yankees have picked up the win eight times in Pettitte's last 10 starts.
Rounding out the Roundup . . .
Finally, there are five games on the WNBA schedule for Friday, with Atlanta at New York, Indiana at Connecticut, Tulsa at San Antonio, Washington at Chicago, and Los Angeles at Seattle. The Sparks (2-6 straight-up, 2-6 against-the-spread) have lost all four of their road games so far this season; Los Angeles edged Phoenix 92-91 at home last time out. The Storm (8-1 SU, 6-3 ATS) blasted Phoenix 97-74 in their last game; Lauren Jackson and Swin Cash each tossed in 16 points for Seattle that night.