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Proven Pitchers Become The Focus Of Three American League Games This Week

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 4/23/2013 7:17:10 PM

Wednesday’s slate in the big leagues includes three American League contests in which the quality of the pitchers will be very much at issue. Make specific distinctions as a bettor.

Game 1: Cleveland Indians @ Chicago White Sox - Wednesday, April 24

Sports betting lines should definitely line up on the side of the White Sox in this tilt. Cleveland starting pitcher Brett Myers is a decent lower-tier guy in a starting rotation, but the man who will oppose him, Chicago starter Jake Peavy, is either a middle-rotation pitcher at worst and, quite reasonably, a number-two starter in terms of talent and experience.

Perhaps you could say, with some degree of legitimacy, that Peavy is not quite the stud that he was with the San Diego Padres. That’s true. However, Peavy is still a much better pitcher than Myers, and when you add in the fact that the White Sox are playing this game at home, they should feel that much more comfortable against the Indians. Cleveland should gradually lose ground as the season continues, while Chicago should offer a challenge to Detroit in the American League Central Division, as was the case last season. Any game can offer a fresh set of surprises, but if you want to make a percentage pick, you should certainly go with Chicago here.

MLB Betting Pick: Chicago White Sox

Game 2: Oakland Athletics @ Boston Red Sox - Wednesday, April 24

When the best online betting sites tackle this clash, they will favor the Athletics. First of all, Oakland has been bashing the baseball this season, promptly re-generating the momentum it originally developed in the second half of the 2012 season. The Athletics are young, hungry, relentless, and very confident.

They do strike out a lot, but their big swings pay off for them with home runs and extra-base hits that bump up the team’s slugging percentage. Another thing to consider with respect to this specific contest is that Oakland (with starter Brett Anderson on the mound) will be going up against Boston starter Clay Buchholz, who took a no-hitter into the eighth inning against Tampa Bay on April 14.

When a pitcher throws extremely well in an early-season start, it’s risky to assign too much meaning to such a start if the pitcher is not a proven ace. When a guy like C.C. Sabathia or Cliff Lee dominates in an April start, one can naturally say that such an outing is due to the pitcher’s evident excellence. When Clay Buchholz spins a gem, one should be more hesitant to view such an event as an indicator of future performance. The sense here is that Buchholz will come back to earth, and that Oakland will smack him around. Take the A’s here.

MLB Betting Pick: Oakland

Game 3: Kansas City Royals @ Detroit Tigers – Wednesday, April 24

This is not high-stakes online poker, not in April, but if there’s a dealer you want in your corner right now in Major League Baseball, it is hard to go against Justin Verlander. The workhorse on the Tigers’ staff is one of the elite forces in the sport. James Shields, Kansas City’s starter, is a solid pitcher in his own right, but he’s no Verlander. Detroit has a balanced batting order and should enjoy a conspicuous advantage at home.

MLB Betting Pick: Detroit

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