MLB (0.5 Unit) Minnesota Twins -1.5 @ Arizona Diamondbacks (+125): 8:40 PM CT on Bally Sports North
It was a good start while it lasted for Arizona, hanging around .500 for the first quarter of the season. But the wheels are starting to come off a little bit for this talent-deprived squad, going 7-13 in their past 20 games. And 10 of those 13 losses have come by two-plus runs, which I see happening again tonight.
Even with Madison Bumgarner on the mound for the Snakes, I think the pitching matchup actually favors Minnesota here. MadBum has seen his ERA steadily climb for 7 straight starts, and his past 4 outings have resulted in run line losses for Arizona. Conversely, when Devin Smeltzer pitches for the Twins, they tend to win comfortably, and have given him 25 runs of support in his past 3 starts.
I’d still consider the Twins bats to be fairly hot, so I like the chances of them extending those struggles for Bumgarner. And I also like their chances of making this a comfortable victory, as 9 of their past 11 road wins have been by two-plus runs. At a nice plus-juice return, I’ll back the Twins to get an easy win here.
MLB (0.75 Unit) Tampa Bay Rays/Baltimore Orioles Over 8.5 (-110): 5:05 PM CT on ESPN+
This Baltimore team can hit, and if they ever get some pitching will actually be a force in their division. That definitely isn’t happening tonight though, as Dean Kremer gets another start for the Orioles here. He’s been one of the more reliable gas cans fueling overs since last season, which is why I took the over in his last start that hit 17 runs. That game was part of a 16-1 run over tonight’s total that Baltimore is currently on, and should continue here.
If Kremer gives up some runs, then so should Tampa starter Shane Baz. His first start of the season couldn’t have gone much worse, giving up 5 runs to the Twins before leaving in the third inning. Quality right-handed bats are something this Orioles team has in common with Minnesota to some extent, so I see them taking advantage. This matchup has produced a lot of high-scoring games the past couple seasons, including the last series in Baltimore a month ago that averaged 11.3 runs per game. With hot and humid conditions at Camden Yards, I see another here.
MLB (0.75 Unit) Milwaukee Brewers/Cincinnati Reds Over 9.5 (-110): 5:40 PM CT on Bally Sports OH
There are a few things that give me pause on this game, not the least of which is the frustrating inconsistency of Milwaukee’s offense. Their past 20 games have seen the Brewers score less than 4 runs 9 times, but 5 or more runs 7 times. Another troubling angle is how Cincy starter Hunter Greene has looked at times this season, certainly showing why he was the top prospect in the Reds organization.
But now for the plus side. As good as Greene has been at times, he’s struggled against the Brewers, allowing a .353 average and 1.294 OPS in two starts against them. Those have been part of a ridiculously high-scoring season series, with these teams having 9 runs as their floor and 15.8 as their average in 6 meetings. I’ve also lost all trust in Brewers starter Eric Lauer and his 5.05 road ERA. To top it off there’s a big wind blowing out to right at the notoriously small Great American Ballpark, so that should help fuel another over between these teams.
MLB (0.5 Unit) San Diego Padres -1.5 @ Colorado Rockies (+100): 7:40 PM CT on SportsNet RM
After a strange power outage in their last series with Colorado, the San Diego Padres are out for revenge here. They only managed 2 runs in each of the past 3 games against the Rockies, losing two of them. But I’d say they found their offense in Chicago, scoring 41 runs in that 4-game series. Favorable hitting conditions with big winds blowing out of the park helped them to a run-line sweep, and should aid them once again tonight.
Peak Coors Field hitting conditions are there for this game, and the Padres should be able to tee off on Kyle Freeland here. The Rockies lefty has a 5.35 ERA in his home starts this season, in which Colorado is 3-4 against the run line. Padres starter MacKenzie Gore is likely to bounce back from an ugly start in that previous series against the Rockies, as it’s his one outlier performance this season. But even if he struggles again, I like the chances of San Diego continuing to slug their way to a comfortable win here.
MLB (0.5 Unit) Cleveland Guardians/LA Dodgers Over 8 (-110): 9:10 PM CT on AppleTV+
I swear it seems like the wind is blowing straight out of almost every ballpark tonight, and that includes Dodger Stadium. Maybe that will be enough to wake up the Dodger bats that have been awfully quiet for most of this month. Or maybe they need to face a pitcher like Guardians starter Zach Plesac, who has compiled a 6.49 ERA on the road this season. Plesac also struggles against left-handed hitters with a .302 average and .836 OPS allowed, so the dangerous lefty bats for L.A. can help break the team out of that slump.
Plesac’s struggles have caused 8 of his past 9 starts to go over tonight’s total, which is being held down by Clayton Kershaw‘s presence on the other side. But Kershaw hasn’t been quite as dominant as you’d expect this season, and is still working his way back from a lengthy stint on the injured list. Plus, this Guardians team is hot, winning 14 of the past 18 games while averaging 5.1 runs in that stretch. If they can chip in a few runs towards this total, then the Dodgers getting to Plesac should take care of the rest.
No degenerates today.
Tiny Nick is 776-639 ATS (+85.3 Units) on his Locks since joining Zone Coverage.
Every day he will offer his Locks and Degenerate picks. Locks are the games he’s confident in. Degenerates are entertaining but riskier picks.