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Interleague Series Finales Litter The Landscape On Thursday In The Major Leagues

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 5/29/2013 7:46:58 PM

Thursday’s action in Major League Baseball will feature the conclusions to four-game, two-stadium interleague series. We’ll see how teams handle these unique situations.

Game 1: Seattle Mariners @ San Diego Padres – Thursday, May 30

Sports betting lines should definitely line up on the side of the Mariners in this contest. Felix Hernandez, the staff ace for Seattle and one of the elite pitchers in the sport, will take the bump for the Mariners. Andrew Cashner will go to the hill for the Padres. This is simply a mismatch, especially since San Diego has a light-hitting lineup to begin with, and since the Padres – playing in a National League park – will not be able to use a designated hitter in this interleague contest. Hernandez had enough of an advantage as it was.

With a pitcher hitting against him, he’s going to have so much more leverage and maneuvering room in this game, so much more margin for error. Hernandez will be able to be choosy with his pitches when he gets to the bottom third of the San Diego batting order. If he ever gets into a bit of early-inning trouble while facing the bottom of the order, he should be able to wiggle free. The Mariners should be able to get enough runs off Cashner to support Hernandez. This should be a straightforward game for Seattle from start to finish as this four-game, two-city set (which began on Monday in Seattle) concludes in Southern California.

MLB Betting Pick: Seattle

Game 2: Washington Nationals @ Baltimore Orioles – Thursday, May 30

When the best online betting sites tackle this clash, they will favor the Orioles for the simple reason that Washington will not be sending one of its top starters to the hill in this game. Dan Haren used to be an elite major-league pitcher, but he certainly isn’t one at the moment. Haren struggles in the middle innings of games and has lost the dominance he once possessed when he pitched for the Oakland Athletics a number of years ago.

The Nationals have a lot of high-quality starters with live young arms, but Haren is not part of that crop of pitchers. The Orioles are not sending an elite pitcher to the mound in their own right; Freddy Garcia is not an imposing kind of pitcher or a shutdown stopper. Yet, he should be able to contain Washington’s slumping hitters to the extent that the Orioles can win. Baltimore should be able to pile up runs against Washington in this contest.

MLB Betting Pick: Baltimore

Game 3: Cincinnati Reds @ Cleveland Indians – Thursday, May 30

This is not high-stakes online poker, not in late May, but if there’s a dealer you want in your corner in this game, you would not want it to be Cleveland starting pitcher Scott Kazmir. Once a top-tier pitcher with the Anaheim and then Los Angeles Angels, Kazmir has seen his career decline. Kazmir’s earned-run average is just under six runs, a terrible figure for any starting pitcher in the big leagues. In April, you will see some fat ERA numbers because of the small sample size (and number of innings pitched). A large ERA in late May is an ominous indicator. Cincinnati should be able to rough up Kazmir in this contest. Take the Reds.

MLB Betting Pick: Cincinnati

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