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Lower Class Meets Upper Class As The Mariners Visit The Rangers

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 7/3/2013 7:53:51 PM

There are two separate sections of teams in the American League West. The Seattle Mariners are part of the underclass in the division, while the Texas Rangers are part of the elite class.

Seattle Mariners @ Texas Rangers – Thursday, July 4
Sport betting line: No line

Why Seattle Will Win

When the best online betting sites tackle this clash, they will certainly give the Mariners a legitimate chance to win for a very simple reason: One of their two best pitchers will be toeing the rubber. Hisashi Iwakuma has steadily been Seattle’s best surprise this season, posting a 2.42 ERA through the first three months of the season, a mark better than the one posted by his more celebrated (and widely-known) teammate, former Cy Young Award winner Felix Hernandez (2.70 ERA). Iwakuma’s ability to keep his team competitive has minimized the harmful effects of the Mariners’ offensive impotence. Without Iwakuma’s talents, the Mariners would be several games worse than they already are. Iwakuma gives Seattle its best chance to win against Texas. The Rangers were slowed down at home a few weeks ago by the pitchers of the Toronto Blue Jays. It’s certainly well within the realm of possibility to see the Mariners give Texas some problems in this tussle as well.

One also has to point out that Texas starter Martin Perez – though graced with a low ERA – has made only three starts to date in the 2013 season. Perez is just getting his feet wet as a big-league pitcher, and that means he’s likely to get mashed before too long. New pitchers learn harsh lessons in the big leagues, and they usually come face to face with those lessons sooner rather than later – there are exceptions, but not prevailing patterns. Perez could very well get knocked around by Seattle on Thursday.

Why Texas Will Win

This is more of a pressure cooker than any set of online poker games, and in this contest, one has to come to grips with the realization what while Iwakuma has been impressive for the Mariners this past season, he has begun to show signs of wobbling over the past two weeks. Iwakuma has given up four runs in each of his last three starts. He was so much better in the first two and a half months of the season, and that’s saying something – giving up four runs in eight innings (as Iwakuma did against the Chicago Cubs this past Friday night) is not that bad a start. Nevertheless, it did not compare favorably with much of Iwakuma’s work to date. Given the way Texas starter Martin Perez (2.37 ERA, just below Iwakuma’s mark) is dealing at the moment, four runs from Texas should be enough to beat Seattle. One must also note that Texas has better hitters than Seattle and his playing in a ballpark where the ball flies out.

Who Will Win

The quality of Iwakuma is not enough to recommend the Mariners in this game – not on the road in a warm ballpark, and not against an above-average hitting team such as Texas. Take the Rangers here.

MLB Betting Pick: Texas

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