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World Series Picks - Road demons will haunt Burnett in Game 5

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 11/2/2009 3:24:25 PM
baseball betsAs World Series picks, the Yankees look pretty darned good right now. Thanks to clutch hits from Johnny Damon, Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada, New York eked out another MLB betting triumph Sunday night to take a 3-1 stranglehold on the Fall Classic. Two main obstacles stand in their way for Game 5 tonight: Cliff Lee and, believe it or not, their very own A.J. Burnett.

World Series Picks: Burnett still hasn’t shown he can handle pressure in road games

  • Burnett’s road ERA a run higher than his home ERA this regular season
  • In lone road start in 2009 playoffs, Burnett allowed four earned runs in the first inning
  • Cliff Lee has a 0.54 ERA in four 2009 postseason starts

Tonight, 7:57 p.m. ET
Yankees vs Phillies odds: Yankees +133, Phillies -153
A.J. Burnett (1-0, 1.29) vs Cliff Lee (1-0, 0.00)

As a former baseball skipper, I have to say I wouldn’t have held Cliff Lee for Game 5. If he started Game 4, he could’ve been available for a potential Game 7 sports betting thriller. Also, Pedro Martinez, who fares better at home since joining the Phillies, could’ve started Game 5 at Citizen’s Bank Park instead of going back to Bronx and its jeering fans for Game 6. Regardless, the Phillies are in excellent hands tonight. Cliff Lee’s postseason stats are absurdly good: four starts, 0.54 ERA, three wins, two complete games, three walks. In his dominant Game 1 at New York, he didn’t walk a single batter. There’s no reason to expect Lee will let up tonight. He’s simply locked in.

A.J. Burnett dominated Game 2 of the World Series indeed, striking out nine batters. His stuff is always electric, but his control was so spot-on that he got lots of called third strikes. However, whenever Burnett dazzles, we have to ask where he dazzled. Naturally, he did it in New York. His home ERA this regular season was 3.51, over a run lower than his 4.59 road mark. Based on his results away from Yankee Stadium, it’s fair to question Burnett’s mental toughness. He imploded in his only road start of these playoffs, allowing four earned runs to the Angels in the first inning on October 22.

How, then, can online betting sharps trust a pitcher who struggles in tough road environments to succeed in Philadelphia, arguably the toughest place for anyone to play in?

DALE’S PICK: The Phillies have too much going for them tonight – a dominant pitcher on his regular rest and a mentally shaky pitcher entering the hornet’s nest that is a Philadelphia crowd atmosphere. Bet on the Phillies to stay alive and force Game 6.

Yankees vs Phillies Betting Edge: Phillies -153

The sportsbook updates the Yankees vs Phillies odds for your World Series picks multiple times daily. Keep reading Dale Lalonde’s analysis for the Betting Edge on every game of the Fall Classic.

Dale Lalonde is's MLB expert.



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