Weekly MLB Underdog Report
by Matt Foust - 07/26/2008
We move into week eight of our underdog analysis, and the results this week were strikingly similar to the numbers we put out in our summary report on Wednesday (Click Here to read). I would expect these numbers to be comparable from week to week for the rest of the year as the only real irregularities occurred during Interleague Play. Hopefully, they will provide you with the edge you need for the remainder of the baseball season.
The sample of games this week began on the July 18 and extended through the 24th. There were 94 games with lopsided money lines; the underdogs won 39 of those games to secure a 41 percent finish. Home teams were listed as dogs 28 times and they won 13 of those games for a stellar 46 percent. Road teams were the underdog 66 times and garnered 26 wins (39 percent).
Dog(s) of the Week:
This week has two 'Dog of the Week" winners. The first club we'll check out is the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds, somewhat understandably, were featured as a dog three times (all at home) and won on every occasion.
Here's the background: Cincinnati hosted the Mets for a four-game set and the Mets were favored in two of the three games. New York came into Cincy on a nine-game win streak, and they took the first game of the series as a favorite. That win, however, occurred in our last week of evaluation so we didn't count it against the Reds. The Reds, who had won seven of 10 going into the Mets series, took the middle two games of the series as a dog of +101 (Maine vs. Arroyo) and +114 (Perez vs. Fogg). Cincinnati then welcomed the Padres into town, and--as expected--were a dog facing ace Jake Peavy. The Reds countered with Johnny Cueto and got a 4-3 win at +101 odds.
Our second winner was the Milwaukee Brewers who, like the Reds, were three-for-three as a dog. The Brewers, unlike the Reds, won all three times on the road. Their first dog win of the week concluded a sweep of the Giants in San Francisco. They sent Manny Parra to the hill to counter Giants ace Tim Lincecum. The Brew Crew took the game, 7-4, at +118 odds. The Giants had won six of the last nine that Lincecum had started at home, but he had shown some signs of being tired in giving up seven earned runs in his previous two goes at home. Milwaukee was riding a three-game win streak and they dropped five earned runs in six innings on Lincecum.
Milwaukee continued their hot play in St. Louis where they won as a dog of +104 against Joel Pineiro and +128 against Kyle Lohse.
A Look Ahead:
The series between the Mets and Cardinals in New York this weekend could be one to watch. St. Louis is reeling after a four-game sweep at the hands of the Brewers, in Busch Stadium no less. This fact, coupled with the Mets recent hot play, is likely to earn St. Louis dog status in every game of the series (it is for sure this evening). The Cardinals have been over achievers all year and many probably suspect a crash in the near future. However, I think they will be competitive this weekend. Earlier this year the Royals swept them at Busch and the Cardinals responded by winning two out of three in Boston. The pitching matchups seem decent for St. Louis too, and I see them being in these games and representing value at the positive odds they are likely to get. Here are the matchups:
7/25 Boggs (Stl) vs. Pelfrey (NYM)
7/26 Pineiro (Stl) vs. Knight (NYM)
7/27 Lohse (Stl) vs. Santana (NYM)