MLB Game Picks – Saturday: May 24, 2014

My new wish is two good days in a row. I had an 8-4 day on Thursday and was feeling sort of mellow and then I went 6-8 last night and it turned into fallow. The difference in the day, really, was the two walk-off wins. When Figueroa hit the double that sunk the Red Sox and when Adam Dunn hit his homer to sink the Yankees, the day went from a 8-6 day (or at least 7-7 since the Red Sox were tied) to 6-8. The Yankees need one more reliever as they have been forced to use their best guys for multiple innings.

There was a rained out game with the Mets and Rockies, but it won’t be made up until Sunday. There are some inexperienced pitchers on the mound today and a couple of aces. So today could be difficult to figure out. The picks:

  • The Indians over the Orioles: Ubaldo Jimenez is just too unreliable to count on here. Corey Kluber has been a much safer pick. That said, the Orioles can still hit the ball around.
  • The Athletics over the Blue Jays: You know that R.A. Dickey is going to give up four or five runs. The question then is what Jesse Chavez can do to hold back the Blue Jays. Can he limit them to three runs? I think he can.
  • The White Sox over the Yankees: The Yankees have this inherent ability to turn a mediocre and even poor pitcher into a good one. This is what I wrote about them against Noesi on Twitter last night: “Yankees as Ellis Island: “…with silent bats, Give us your tired, your poor, your Hector Noesi yearning to pitch well…The wretched refuse of team defense. Send these, the homeless tempest tossed to us. We will lift your game beside the golden door.” Thus, the terrible John Danks will look like Kershaw and Vidal Nuno is not a good starter.
  • The Dodgers over the Phillies: David Buchanan is making his MLB debut for the Phillies. He had a good spring with the club but has not looked great in the minors. The safer pick here is the Dodgers behind Dan Haren.
  • The Diamondbacks over the Mets: Whenever I have picked against Josh Collmenter, he made me look stupid (not difficult as it is). And Zack Wheeler just can’t seem to put it all together despite great stuff.
  • The Bay Rays over the Red Sox: Again we have that critical mass of odds starting to pile up whenever there is a long losing or winning streak. It has to end some time and picking when it does is difficult. I don’t think the Red Sox’ will end today. David Price is better than Jake Peavy.
  • The Braves over the Rockies: Mike Minor has pitched well for three of his four starts. I look for him to do well at home. Juan Nicasio is a worthy opponent though and could make this a bullpen game. Either way, the Braves have the edge.
  • The Brewers over the Marlins: One of those trap picks? Perhaps. Jacob Turner hasn’t won a game yet and is really kind of a 4-A pitcher. But anything can happen in Miami. I like Wily Peralta better. I just wish I could call him Wily Mo.
  • The Angels over the Royals: Matt Shoemaker has made the most of his opportunity. But is he destined to fail? Who knows. All I can go by is what he has done so far. James Shields is good but the Angels’ lineup can do some damage.
  • The Reds over the Cardinals: Even when he was healthy and pitching regularly, Jaime Garcia was not a good pick on the road. Tony Cingrani is not a lock though.
  • The Pirates over the Nationals: The Nats never score for Stephen Strasburg. He has to be perfect to win. And if he isn’t, Gerrit Cole is nearly as good a “stuff” pitcher as he is. My fantasy aces never win.
  • The Giants over the Twins: The Twins have had a nice surprising year thus far. But the Giants are easily the better team. Ryan Vogelsong is not exactly a lock, but he should be better than Samuel Deduno.
  • The Cubs over the Padres: Travis Wood is solid and should pitch well at Petco. Billy Buckner gets the ball for the Padres and he has always been a fringy pitcher in the Majors and in Triple-A. You wonder why he keeps getting chances.
  • The Mariners over the Astros: This is a messy one. Brandon Maurer is okay, I guess. But I don’t delight in picking him. Brett Oberholtzer has started seven games and has lost six of them. He pitched well the first four times but the pressure of a losing team has sunken his spirit it seems.

And the Game of the Day:

  • The Tigers over the Rangers: Nick Martinez pitched well for the Rangers in his first start. My problem is that he doesn’t blow people away and the Tigers can eat those kinds of guys for lunch. Rick Porcello has been good.

Yesterday: 6-8, May: 167-144, Games of the Day: 25-23, Season: 400-316

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