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Rays Rangers Betting Predictions - Rangers And Rays Meet In Highly Intriguing 2011 ALDS Rematch

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 4/26/2012 3:08:20 PM

The defending American League champion Texas Rangers are setting the pace this season as well, busting out to a 13-3 start. Can the Tampa Bay Rays cool them down this weekend?

Tampa Bay Rays @ Texas Rangers – Series Overview

Game 1: Friday, April 27

If you are interested in betting on baseball this season, the upcoming three-game weekend series between Tampa Bay and Texas should definitely grab your attention, because you'll want to see how two upper-tier teams fare against each other. In the first game of the set on Friday night, James Shields will start for Tampa Bay while Matt Harrison will take the mound for Texas. Shields has been superb, going 3-0 with an earned-run average of 2.76. However, Harrison has managed to be even better, going 3-0 with an ERA of just 1.66.
Harrison has been lights-out this season, and what's particularly impressive about his pitching is that April is a month which is not typically friendly to pitchers. Harrison has bucked the normal trend in which pitchers need a month to six weeks to find a good groove in a baseball season. It is unwise to pick against Harrison unless or until he shows signs of slumping. For now, Texas should be favored whenever he takes the mound, unless a superstar pitcher such as Justin Verlander is opposing him. Take Texas to win the opening game of this series.

MLB Betting Pick: Texas

Game 2: Saturday, April 28

The team that is a favorite for legions of sports betting experts is the Texas Rangers, but with that having been said, when you do your homework and assess your sports bet on this second game of the three-game series between the Rangers and the Rays, the pendulum might swing to Tampa Bay. Jeff Niemann goes to the mound for the Rays in this game, and it's true that he has a modest 4.11 ERA. It's also true that Texas starter Neftali Feliz carries a solid 2.70 ERA into this game. However, it's worth pointing out that Feliz is transitioning from being a reliever to a starter this season. He threw 119 pitches in an eight-inning outing in his most recent start. That's a lot of pitches to throw for a game in the month of April.

Clearly, Texas manager Ron Washington showed a lot of confidence in Feliz. However, the laws of averages suggest that Feliz won't have as much velocity on his pitches in this game, or that if he does throw hard, he won't be able to get past the sixth inning. Tampa Bay's hitters should be able to work counts and find a number of very hittable pitches. Specific circumstances work in favor of the Rays here.

MLB Betting Pick: Tampa Bay

Game 3: Sunday, April 29

The team that has to be viewed as the American League favorite is the Rangers, and the reason for their supremacy can be found in the depth of their pitching staff. Matt Harrison and Neftali Feliz tote ERAs under three runs per game, and then on Sunday, Texas has the luxury of being able to send another quality pitcher, Colby Lewis, to the hill. Tampa Bay's David Price has an okay ERA of 4.20, but Lewis' ERA is only 2.03. Texas can shut down opponents with so many quality arms, Lewis being a foremost example. Texas will win this game and the series.

MLB Betting Pick: Texas

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