early-week major league games:
The San Diego Padres and Atlanta Braves have been the best
Under bets in the National League to date – but you wouldn’t
know it from the way they played this past weekend. Atlanta
beat visiting San Diego 8-3 Sunday to make it a 2-0-1 O/U
stretch entering Monday’s finale of the four-game set.
Dickey Down on the Road
R.A. Dickey will be hoping for a little more
road run support than he usually gets as the Toronto Blue Jays
(+123, 8.5) open a series against the Boston Red Sox on Monday.
Dickey is just 2-7 despite a 3.77 ERA in 10 starts away from
Toronto; the Jays are averaging just 2.8 runs in those outings.
Jered Weaver will look to continue his
consistent play of late as he leads the Los Angeles Angels into
Baltimore on Tuesday. Weaver has allowed exactly two runs in
each of his last four appearances and is riding a four-game
Under streak dating back to early July.
* Jordan Zimmermann tries to avoid a third
straight shaky outing Monday as his Washington Nationals (-148,
7.5) visit the Miami Marlins. Zimmermann has allowed eight runs
over his past two starts after surrendering just seven runs
over his previous seven outings combined.
* Edwin Jackson has been ice-cold of late as
he and the Chicago Cubs face off against the visiting Colorado
Rockies on Tuesday. Jackson has thrown just 14 total innings
over his previous three starts, allowing 17 runs – all earned –
while going 0-2 with a no-decision in that span.
* It’ll be a battle of Japanese countrymen Monday as Texas ace
Yu Darvish leads the host Rangers (-143, 8)
against Ichiro Suzuki and the New York
Yankees. Ichiro has dominated his much younger compatriot in
their major-league encounters, batting .368 with just two
strikeouts in 19 at-bats.
* Tampa Bay catcher Jose Molina has struggled for most of the
season – and likely won’t get much relief Tuesday as the Rays
face Milwaukee. Molina is 0-for-14 with three strikeouts in his
career against Brewers starter Matt Garza.
Los Angeles Angels (3-10 O/U): The Angels have
been one of the strongest Under plays in the league so far this
month, and have been especially stingy of late – surrendering
just two runs over their last three games, all victories over
Detroit. Los Angeles is 52-47-5 O/U for the season.
Prop of the Day
The payout may not be great, but the Oakland Athletics (-140)
are a strong bet to score last in their game against Houston.
The Astros have the third-worst bullpen ERA in baseball (4.47),
while the Athletics have scored the third-most runs in the
league after the sixth inning (157).
* Oakland outfielder Coco Crisp continued to
deal with a neck injury and will not play Monday night against
Houston (+176, 8.5). The Athletics haven’t missed a beat with
Crisp out of the lineup, going 17-3 SU for a whopping +1,305
* Chicago Cubs outfielder Justin Ruggiano is
questionable for Monday’s game against Colorado (+126) with a
groin injury. The Cubs are 12-21 SU, 14-17-2 O/U and -666 units
with Ruggiano on the shelf so far in 2014.
WAG of the Day
Farrah Johnson Lester is the wife of Boston
Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester.
* Wind at Fenway Park will blow out to center field at 11 mph
for Monday’s series opener between host Boston and Toronto. The
Red Sox went 4-2 SU but just 1-5 O/U in six games under similar
conditions in 2013, with teams combining for 8.5 runs –
slightly below the stadium average.
Umpire Note of the Day
Over is 8-2 in umpire Gabe Morales’ last 10 games behind home
plate. Morales will call the balls and strikes for Monday’s
series finale between the Braves and Padres.
** Odds, stats, weather forecast and probable pitchers as
of 10:30 a.m. ET Monday.