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Red Sox at Yankees: Clearly with the Boston and all the talk of their demise, there may well be value, even against Sabathia. Sox would likely start David Ross behind the plate, since Saltamacchia sucks v/LHP, and Ross has hit two jacks off of CC. Throw in Johnny Gomes who typically crushes LHP and I would not rule out taking the Red Sox. But, given the intensity of game one, I can't overlook Youkilis, who bombed off of Lester last year. Obviously can't look at weather patterns yet, but with SP's on a serious pitch count, it's the bullpens who may decide a ton of these early games. the acquisition of Hanrahan could be huge for Boston, and with Bailey out a year we really don't know what to expect. The Yankees are DFL in Spring Training BA at a mere .248. It's been my experience that these things just don't turn themselves around that quickly, and Boston has shown very little power this Spring, so we'll look hard at the under here.
Marlins at Nationals: Without a doubt with Strasburg pitching and the expectations, this ML will probably not be playable. However, last season we did real well taking these dead dogs at cheap RL prices early in the season, and this could be a case of that. Strasburg's probably on a 50 pitch count, lol. Nationals already had a great bullpen with Clippard and Storen, so add in Rafael Soriano and they WILL be tough to come back on. Hard to imagine where Nolasco's heads at since he's already being discussed as a trade-deadline acquisition for someone. He's pitched fairly well against the Nats, save Zimmerman, and unless and until Washington shows they can score (they could not last season) then even the thought of laying -1.5 RL is out of the question, and we rarely do that with a home team that won't get the last at bat if they're ahead by one. With nobody in the Miami lineup to protect Stanton, this is yet another under potential. Actually, most Marlin games will be. Early last season many thought (including myself) that Marlin Park (or whatever they call it) was going to be an over venue. It is/was not. Down the lines it's short, but cavernous from gap to gap.
Padres at Mets: Well, with the entire world hating the Mets, we might have to look at a cheap home team. Without Headley in the lineup for the Padres they'll likely put Forsythe at third, which is simply going to allow people to pitch around Alonso and/or Quentin. Both Murphy and Wright are questionable for the start of the season, so here's another potential 2-1 game. Yes, I know they moved the fences in at Citi Field, but not nearly enough. It's always been hard to wrap my money around Volquez actually finding the plate, but with Bobby Parnell as the Mets closer, that's equally hard to do. Certainly easier matchups to figure out, although the Padres have shown some pop this Spring.
Cubs at Pirates: Well, the Pirates made us a ton of money the 1H of last season, but not so sure they'll be quite as much value on them this season. I certainly don't like Grilli taking over the closing duties from Hanrahan, and the Pirates bring back essentially the same lineup as last year, with the exception of Russell Martin behind the plate. Not sure at his age how many games he can play, though, and with no DH in the NL, we're going to have to pick our spots more carefully with these guys. Travis Snyder will be in outfield against Samardjia and most all RHP, while Tabata will surely start out there v/LHP. With Snyder's pop I would think Pittsburgh may score a few more runs. The Cubs did little or nothing to add to little or nothing (Schierholz does not count). They are going to give up a shitload of runs (O/U for Edwin Jackson is 40 homers) and with Carlos Marmol closing, the O/U for his appearances (in save situations!) is 20! With that in mind, the Pirates may actually be well over the -150 threshold, especially since Burnett is typically better early in the season.
Colorado at Milwaukee: I really do wonder how the Brewers will fare without Corey Hart in the lineup. The first thing that struck me about this game is whatever the total is. Because it these two teams, my guess is that the total will be pretty high for game one, and my guess is the roof will be closed. Then again, the Brewers have one of the worst bullpens in baseball (still) and Gorzellany is probably their best relief pitcher. With everyone healthy the Rockies ARE going to score runs, no matter where they play or what time of year it is. Chacin was scratched from his last Spring Training start, but the team said he's good to go here. He's always been a much better pitcher away from Coors Field (who hasn't) and he's much tougher on RHH, which is what the Brewers are loaded with. I don't usually trust Gallardo a whole lot, and the Rockies have seen and hit him enough for me to think this could be our first live/dead dog of the season.
Angels at Reds: Obviously two of the most public teams early in the season with high hopes, and with Hamilton and Frieri being added to the roster, the Angels may be to expensive to bet on, especially against weaker teams. Getting Sean Burnett from the Nationals might prove to be their biggest acquisition, because the did have some massive holes in the middle to late relief last season. Weaver has not pitched terribly will this Spring. Reds added Sin Soo-Choo, and in Great American he could have a freak show year. After that, it's the same old Reds with a nasty bullpen and the capability of putting up 10 runs on any given day. Since the Reds haven't seen much of Weaver and the Angels have seen less of Cueto, this game may well stay under what will clearly be an inflated total in what's known as an "over" ballpark, but not so much if the weather's typical for that time of year.
Royals-White Sox: Everyone's trendy team, Kansas City. They've no doubt upgraded their starting pitching, but I've never been a big fan of Santana. I think in the summer in that stadium, when the ball carries, he gets crushed. However, it's Shields in this game so we will worry about that later. I still think he's living more off what he did two years ago, and for someone that pitched half his games in the pitcher friendly Trop, he does give up some long balls. He doesn't walk a ton of people, but even Alexi Ramirez has two bombs off him, and I have found that when Alexi hits, Chicago wins. But, Shields IS 9-1 in April the last three years. I just really wonder if we aren't over reacting to the Royals acquisitions and the Spring they're having. They've got essentially the same sticks, so they've typically been a play-on against LHP, and as fate would have it, Chris Sale is a left handed pitcher. I actually remember where I was last May 12th when the Royals beat him 5-0 in Chicago. A sportsbook in Vegas w/@goodfella00 getting in all sorts of trouble. I'll bet Sale remembers that, too. Butler owns this kid, and several other Royals do too. Not sure I like Reed as a closer, and with Crain likely out for the start of the season, that could hurt some. I do like Thornton and Jones, however. Have to lean to the trendy Royals a bit, if for no other reason than they hit Sale in the past and the price will probably be right. Also one of the few games, weather pending, that I could make a case for an over
2 UNIT = Colorado Rockies @ Milwaukee Brewers - BREWERS TO WIN (-141)
Listed Pitchers: Chacin vs Gallardo
(Note: I'm risking 2.00 units to win 1.42 units)
The Colorado Rockies went 64-98 last year, which was the third worst record in the National League. They were just 29-52 on the road, which was also 3rd worst in the NL. Milwaukee had a rough start to the year but made a late push to finish 83-79 on the season and 3rd in the NL Central. They were 49-32 at home. Colorado's opening day starter is Jhoulys Chacin who pitched just 14 games last season. He was 3-5 with a 4.43 ERA, .288 opponents batting average, and 1.62 WHIP. This spring he said he was being intentionally predictable but had a 8.44 ERA, .362 opponents batting average (OBA) and 1.81 WHIP. Yovani Gallardo will get yet another opening day start for Milwaukee, but hopes for a better result as he is 0-3 in opening day starts. Gallardo was 16-9 last year with a 3.66 ERA over 33 starts. He had a .243 OBA and 1.30 WHIP. Gallardo has proven to be a consistent starter as he has posted a sub 4.00 ERA in every season in the bigs. Over 18 starts at home last season he was 9-4 with a 3.72 ERA, and in 2011 he was 10-2 at home with a 3.00 ERA over 16 starts. This spring Gallardo posted a 3.54 ERA, .233 opponents batting average and 1.08 WHIP over 5 starts. He pitched 3.1 innings of work for Mexico at the World Baseball Classic and he allowed just 2 hits and 1 earned run with 4 strikeouts and 1 walk in a win over the USA. Note that the Rockies are 0-4 in Chacin's last 4 road starts, while the Brewers are 41-17 in Gallardo's last 58 home starts. Milwaukee finished off last year 37-16 in their last 53 home games, while the Rockies finished off 8-20 in their last 28 overall. Colorado played well vs Milwaukee last season, but the Brewers are 7-3 in their last 10 home meetings vs the Rockies. I like the pitching match up for Milwaukee here and with the Brewers at home I think we've got good value.
The Pirates look to build on their 6-1 record in A.J. Burnett's last 7 home starts. Pittsburgh is the pick (-125) according to Dunkel, which has the Pirates favored by 3. Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-125). Here are all of today's picks.
MONDAY, APRIL 1
Time Posted: 6:30 a.m. EST
Game 901-902: Miami at Washington (1:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Miami (Nolasco) 13.792; Washington (Strasburg) 16.613
Dunkel Line: Washington by 3; 6
Vegas Line: Washington (-260); 7
Dunkel Pick: Washington (-260); Under
Game 903-904: San Diego at NY Mets (1:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Diego (Volquez) 15.190; NY Mets (Nieve) 14.607
Dunkel Line: San Diego by 1/2; 8 1/2
Vegas Line: NY Mets (-150); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: San Diego (+130); Over
Game 905-906: Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh (1:35 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Cubs (Samardzija) 12.672; Pittsburgh (Burnett) 15.760
Dunkel Line: Pittsburgh by 3; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: Pittsburgh (-125); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Pittsburgh (-125); Under
Game 907-908: Colorado at Milwaukee (2:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Colorado (Chacin) 14.797; Milwaukee (Gallardo) 14.486
Dunkel Line: Colorado by 1/2; 9
Vegas Line: Milwaukee (-150); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Colorado (+130); Over
Game 909-910: San Francisco at LA Dodgers (4:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Francisco (Cain) 18.207; LA Dodgers (Kershaw) 16.789
Dunkel Line: San Francisco by 1 1/2; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: LA Dodgers (-155); 6
Dunkel Pick: San Francisco (+135); Over
Game 911-912: Philadelphia at Atlanta (7:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Philadelphia (Hamels) 14.974; Atlanta (Hudson) 17.003
Dunkel Line: Atlanta by 2; 6
Vegas Line: Atlanta (-120); 7
Dunkel Pick: Atlanta (-120); Under
Game 913-914: St. Louis at Arizona (10:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: St. Louis (Wainwright) 17.073; Arizona (Kennedy) 15.182
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 2; 9
Vegas Line: Arizona (-115); 8 1/2
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (-105); Over
Game 915-916: Boston at NY Yankees (1:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Boston (Lester) 13.527; NY Yankees (Sabathia) 16.995
Dunkel Line: NY Yankees by 3 1/2; 7
Vegas Line: NY Yankees (-130); 8
Dunkel Pick: NY Yankees (-130); Under
Game 917-918: Kansas City at Chicago White Sox (4:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Kansas City (Shields) 14.765; White Sox (Sale) 14.317
Dunkel Line: Kansas City by 1/2; 8
Vegas Line: Chicago White Sox (-140); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Kansas City (+120); Over
Game 919-920: Detroit at Minnesota (4:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Detroit (Verlander) 17.443; Minnesota (Worley) 14.857
Dunkel Line: Detroit by 2 1/2; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: Detroit (-200); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Detroit (-200); Under
Game 921-922: Seattle at Oakland (10:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Seattle (Hernandez) 16.092; Oakland (Anderson) 15.634
Dunkel Line: Seattle by 1/2; 7
Vegas Line: Oakland (-120); 6 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Seattle (+100); Over
Game 923-924: LA Angels at Cincinnati (4:10 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: LA Angels (Weaver) 14.527; Cincinnati (Cueto) 16.766
Dunkel Line: Cincinnati by 2; 6 1/2
Vegas Line: Cincinnati (-110); 7 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Cincinnati (-110); Under
We'll have a lot more information up once the teams get a week or so under their belts. For the first week, its mostly starting pitchers and umpires- the pitchers' and umps' information, obviously, refers to last year's stats.
-- Niese is 5-3, 2.35 in his last eight starts.
-- Samardzija was 1-1, 2.25 in two starts last September (2-0, 1.59 vs Pitt).
-- Milwaukee is 11-1 in Gallardo's last 12 starts (2-1, 3.23 last five). Chacin is 1-0, 3.32 in his last four starts.
-- Cain is 5-2, 2.78 in his last nine starts (1-0, 2.73, last four vs SF). Kershaw is 3-3, 1.58 in his last eight starts (2-3, 1.62 vs SF).
-- Phillies won nine of last ten Hamels starts (2-0, 3.00 last three, 1-1, 3.46 in four starts vs Atl LY). Hudson is 1-1, 2.51 in his last two starts (3-1, 4.30 in five starts LY vs Phils).
-- Kennedy is 3-1, 2.65 in his last five starts.
-- Weaver is 4-1, 2.54 in his last five starts. Cueto is 2-0, 2.20 in his last four.
-- Sabathia is 4-1, 2.58 in his last six starts (1-1, 5.14 vs Bos).
-- Shields is 3-3, 1.88 in his last seven starts (0-1, 5.84 two starts vs CWS).
-- Verlander is 7-1, 1.66 in his last eight starts (2-0, 1.13 vs Minn).
-- Anderson was 3-0, 0.95 in three home starts LY.
-- Strasburg was 0-1, 7.71 in his last three starts before getting shut down in early September (3-1, 4.15 in five starts vs Miami LY). Nolasco is 0-3, 5.29 in his last three starts (2-2, 2.54 vs Nats, with shutouts in his last two starts against them).
-- Volquez was 2-2, 4.67 in five starts last September (0-2, 4.91 vs NYM).
-- Burnett is 1-5, 3.96 in his last six starts (2-1, 3.26 vs Cubs).
-- Wainwright is 0-2, 8.63 in his last five road starts.
-- Lester is 0-3, 4.15 in his last five starts (1-1, 4.55 in 5 starts vs NYY).
-- Sale is 0-2, 5.82 in his last three starts (1-1, 5.06 vs TB).
-- Worley is 0-3, 6.75 in his last five starts.
-- FHernandez is 0-4, 7.13 in his last six starts (1-2, 4.28 in 5 starts vs A's).
-- Over is 5-1-1 in Nolasco's last seven starts.
-- Five of last seven Niese starts stayed under.
-- Under is 12-1-1 in last fourteen Samardzija starts.
-- Under is 4-1-1 in Chacin's last six road starts.
-- Five of last seven Cain starts stayed under total.
-- Five of last six Hudson games stayed under total.
-- Four of last five Wainwright starts went over.
-- Under is 7-2-2 in last eleven Cueto starts.
-- Last nine Lester starts stayed under the total.
-- Six of last seven Shields starts stayed under total.
-- Over is 7-4-1 in Worley's last twelve starts.
-- Seven of last nine Hernandez starts stayed under.
Probable starting pitchers: Jon Lester (BOS), CC Sabathia (NYY)
Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson will all be starting the season on the disabled list for New York, leaving veterans like recently acquired Vernon Wells and former Boston star Kevin Youkilis to carry the weight. Yankees ace CC Sabathia owns an 8-9 record with a 4.23 ERA in 22 career starts against Boston. The under is 6-0 in Jon Lester’s last six starts vs. American League East opposition.
Miami Marlins at Washington Nationals (-260, 7)
Probable starting pitchers: Ricky Nolasco (FLA), Stephen Strasburg (WSH)
Giancarlo Stanton, who is 5-for-13 in his career against Stephen Strasburg, is the only player that started on Opening Day last season for Miami expected in Monday’s lineup. The over is 5-0 in Strasburg’s last five starts in the opener of a series and Ricky Nolasco is 11-5 against Washington – the most wins he has against any team.
San Diego Padres at New York Mets (-139, 7.5)
Probable starting pitchers: Edinson Volquez (SD), Jon Niese (NYM)
The Padres were 49-37 in their last 86 games a year ago and hope to build on that improvement. San Diego starts that quest without talented third baseman Chase Headley, who is out a couple more weeks with a fractured left thumb. Edinson Volquez is coming off his best season since 2008, striking out 174 in 182 2/3 innings in his first campaign with San Diego. He is 0-4 lifetime against the Mets with a 6.46 ERA in 23 2/3 innings.
Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates (-122, 7.5)
Probable starting pitchers: Jeff Samardzija (CHC), A.J. Burnett (PIT)
The Pirates were 16 games above .500 on Aug. 8 before going 16-46 the rest of the way to complete their 20th consecutive losing season. Pittsburgh's active roster is a combined 11-for-61 (.180) against Jeff Samardzija, but OF Andrew McCutchen has enjoyed limited success, going 3-for-10 against him. Samardzija won both of his starts against the Pirates in 2012, compiling 14 strikeouts and a 1.06 ERA in 17 innings. Chicago is 5-1 in its last six games in Pittsburgh.
Yovani Gallardo is 0-4 with a 5.82 ERA against the Rockies in eight career appearances. The Brewers are 0-7 in Gallardo’s last seven starts vs. the Rockies, who have taken the last four matchups with the Brew Crew. Colorado was the only NL team the Brewers failed to beat more than once in 2012.
San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers (-156, 6)
Probable starting pitchers: Matt Cain (SF), Clayton Kershaw (LAD)
Clayton Kershaw has been particularly tough on the Giants in his career, owning a 1.37 ERA in 16 starts and posting two of his five shutouts. San Francisco 3B Pablo Sandoval has only had two at-bats since March 16 because of a lingering right elbow injury that could force him to sit out the opener. The under is 5-0-1 in the last six meetings.
Los Angeles Angels at Cincinnati Reds (-109, 7.5)
Probable starting pitchers: Jered Weaver (LAA), Johnny Cueto (CIN)
Jered Weaver has thrived in interleague play with a 12-3 career record in 20 starts with a 2.61 ERA. The Angels will rely on Weaver to lead the rotation again this year after he led the American League last season in several categories, including winning percentage (.800), opponents average (.214), WHIP (1.018) and hits per nine innings (7.0). The Angels are 8-1 in last their nine Opening Day games, including four straight wins.
Vance Worley struggled a bit in the spring, finishing with a 5.73 ERA over 22 innings of work -- striking out 13 and walking only three. Justin Verlander, the 2011 AL MVP, gets the ball for the Tigers in the opener for the sixth straight year. Surprisingly, he has never won in five career Opening Day starts (0-1). The Tigers are 8-0 in Verlander’s last eight starts vs. the Twins. Weather forecasts are projecting chilly temperatures around the freezing mark for this game.
Kansas City Royals at Chicago White Sox (-140, 7.5)
Probable starting pitchers: James Shields (KC), Chris Sale (CWS)
Chris Sale has earned his first career Opening Day start after being selected as an All-Star in 2012. He went 3-3 with an impressive 3.12 ERA in six starts against Kansas City last season. The Royals counter with their newly acquired weapon James Shields. Kansas City took 12 of the 18 games in the series last season and the under is 4-0 in the last four meetings.
Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves (-122, 7)
Probable starting pitchers: Cole Hamels (PHI), Tim Hudson (ATL)
The Phillies are missing one of their top offensive players to start 2013 as catcher Carlos Ruiz begins a 25-game suspension for using a banned stimulant. Atlanta will also will be without its starting catcher for the first month as Brian McCann continues to recover from off-season shoulder surgery. Philadelphia starter Cole Hamels looks more than ready for Opening Day, dominating in five Grapefruit League starts while going 3-0 and holding opponents to a .172 batting average. But the Phillies are 0-5 in the last five meetings when Hamels faces Tim Hudson.
Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics (-106, 6.5)
Probable starting pitchers: Felix Hernandez (SEA), Brett Anderson (OAK)
Brett Anderson has stymied the Mariners often in his brief career, compiling a 7-3 record and 1.76 ERA in 13 career outings. But he takes the hill against a Seattle squad that smashed 58 homers in 33 spring-training games. The Athletics went 12-7 against the Mariners last season and have taken seven consecutive meetings.
St. Louis Cardinals at Arizona Diamondbacks (-106, 8.5)
Probable starting pitchers: Adam Wainwright (STL), Ian Kennedy (ARZ)
Ian Kennedy is 1-3 lifetime against the Cardinals and lost both starts last season. The 28-year-old is tough to beat at home - he was 8-4 at Chase Field in 2012 (one of the losses was to St. Louis) and 19-6 over the past two seasons. St. Louis was 5-1 against Arizona in 2012, including 3-0 at Chase Field. The over is 7-0 in the Cardinals’ last seven games as road underdogs.
Weather not only plays a huge factor on Opening Day but in nearly every baseball game in April.
Mother Nature is clearly a fan of the long ball because winds are projected to blow out in nearly every outdoor stadium Monday. But bettors beware: cold conditions are expected for many of the season openers.
Here's our weather report for Opening Day:
Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees (-125, 8)
Site: Yankee Stadium
Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the mid-50s and sunny skies. Winds will blow out to center at 18 mph.
Miami Marlins at Washington Nationals (-260, 7)
Site: Nationals Park
Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the mid-50s and partly cloudy skies. Winds will blow out to right at 15 mph.
San Diego Padres at New York Mets (-140, 7.5)
Site: Citi Field
Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the mid-50s and partly cloudy skies. Winds will blow out to right field at 18 mph.
Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates (-122, 7.5)
Site: PNC Park
Forecasts are calling for cold temperatures in the mid-30s and a 30 percent chance of rain. Winds will blow out to center at 15 mph.
San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers (-159, 6)
Site: Dodger Stadium
Forecasts are projecting temperatures in the mid-60’s and sunny skies. Winds will blow out to right at 12 mph.
Los Angeles Angels at Cincinnati Reds (-114, 7.5)
Site: Great American Ballpark
Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the low-40s and partly cloudy conditions. Winds will blow out to right at 12 mph.
Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins (+176, 7.5)
Site: Target Field
Forecasts are calling for frigid temperatures in the mid-20s and sunny skies. Winds will blow out to left at 14 mph.
Kansas City Royals at Chicago White Sox (-140, 7.5)
Site: U.S. Cellular Field
Forecasts are calling for cool temperatures in the high-20s and partly cloudy skies. Winds will blow out to right at 14 mph.
Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves (-122, 7)
Site: Turner Field
Forecasts are projecting temperatures in the mid-60s and clear skies. Winds will blow in from left at 6 mph.
Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics (-106, 6.5)
Site: Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the high-50s and clear skies. Winds will blow out to right at 8 mph.
Games being played in venues with a retractable roof are not mentioned.
Baseball is back, whether you’re ready or not. If you’ve been busy betting the NCAA tournament or capping the playoff pushes in the NBA and NHL, let us lend a hand and get you up to speed.
Here are three teams that tend to start the season hot and three others who drag their feet in the opening games of the schedule.
Record over the past 10 MLB seasons.
Toronto Blue Jays (35-23 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: vs. Cleveland, vs. Boston
The Blue Jays always come out with a head of steam but fizzle as the schedule goes on. Last season, Toronto went 6-4 in its first two series of the season. This year, a reloaded roster and stacked pitching staff has the Jays among the World Series faves but could there be a jelling process for this new-look club?
Los Angeles Dodgers (34-26 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: vs. San Francisco, vs. Pittsburgh
The Dodgers were on fire to start the 2012 season and jumped up the World Series futures board thanks to a 16-7 record in April, including a 6-1 mark in their first two series. Los Angeles reached deep into its pockets this offseason and loaded up on talent. Much like Toronto, L.A. could need some time to come together.
St. Louis Cardinals (32-24 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: at Arizona, at San Francisco
The Cardinals are known more for their late-season heroics than their April success. However, St. Louis got off to a strong start in 2012, winning five of its first seven and let everyone know it would be alright without Albert Pujols.
Philadelphia Phillies (21-32 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: at Atlanta, vs. Kansas City
Believe it or not, one of the best baseball teams over the past 10 seasons has also been one of its slowest starters. The Phillies split their first six games of the 2012 season and if Roy Halladay is suffering from a dead arm, things may go the same this spring.
Boston Red Sox (24-33 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: at New York, at Toronto
There were teams with worse records during opening week than the Red Sox, but who the hell is going to bet on the Astros? Boston was the most costly team in baseball last season, burning 36.85 units, and a 1-5 start to the schedule set the tone for a dismal year for BoSox backers.
Cleveland Indians (23-31 in Opening Week)
Opening Week opponents: at Toronto, at Tampa Bay
The Tribe aren’t surprising anyone falling under this category. Cleveland is not only among the slowest starters – going 1-4 in its first two series last year - but is the worst Opening Day bet in the bigs at 2-8 over the past 10 seasons. But there is a catch. The Indians added some interesting players to the mix this offseason and are the “sexy” season win totals over pick (77.5) among Las Vegas wiseguys.