I don't pretend to know whether the Philadelphia Phillies are going to give interim manager Pete Mackanin the full-time job after this season. I would guess not as new team boss Andy MacPhail likely wants to pick his own guy. But I almost hope the Phillies do hire him now. Do I care about the Phillies? Not in the least. But Mackanin benched rookie Odubel Herrera on Sunday for "pouting," and I find that awesome. Herrera threw his bat down in frustration and then jogged slowly to first base after a fly out to left field in the top of the fourth inning in Atlanta. "Boys play Little League. Men play Major League Baseball," said Mackanin. "We will not pout. We will not feel sorry for ourselves. If you want to, then you don't belong here. He had to learn a lesson."
Yankees at Blue Jays (-142, 8.5)
This is an ESPN game and will have live betting at sportsbooks. The Jays could all but wrap up the AL East if they can sweep this series. Marco Estrada (13-8, 3.14) is on the mound Tuesday for Toronto. They have won his past four and he shut out the Braves on three hits over eight innings last time out. He is 1-2 with a 4.09 ERA this year in four starts vs. the Yankees. Carlos Beltran is 6-for-22 with three homers against Estrada. Alex Rodriguez has a homer in 10 at-bats off him. Yankees rookie Luis Severino (4-3, 3.12) had the worst start of his young career on Sept. 11 vs. the Jays, allowing six runs and six hits in 2.1 innings. Jose Bautista and Josh Donaldson both went yard off him in that one.
Key trends: The Yankees are 4-1 in Severino's past five. The Jays are 10-3 in Estrada's past 13 vs. teams with a winning record. The "over/under" has gone under in four of Severino's past five vs. the AL East. The under is 6-1 in Estrada's past seven at home.
Early lean: Blue Jays and under.
Mets at Braves (-218, 8)
This normally would be Jacob deGrom's spot in the Mets rotation, but they are skipping him to help limit his innings. DeGrom, the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year, could be hitting a wall as he has a 6.41 ERA and .330 opponent batting average over his past five starts. DeGrom has protested the move, but he was spectacular down the stretch last season after coming off a two-week stint on the DL. New York is hoping for more of the same here. So Logan Verrett gets the spot start for New York. The rookie twice has filled in for Matt Harvey in recent weeks. Verrett (2-0, 2.89) has allowed two runs on seven hits and two walks in 13 innings in those outings. He began this season with Texas. It's fellow rookie Matt Wisler (5-8, 5.63) for Atlanta. He is 1-1 with a 1.93 ERA in two starts this year vs. the Mets. Yoenis Cespedes is 2-for-3 off him with a double.
Key trends: The Braves are 0-5 in Wisler's past five on the road. The over is 5-0 in those five. The over is 5-0 in the Mets' past five on Tuesday.
Early lean: Mets and over.
Reds at Cardinals (-210, 8)
Will Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina be able to play here? Very questionable as he was to undergo an MRI on Monday on his thumb. He injured his left thumb while making a swipe tag in Sunday's win over the Cubs. Molina has been struggling at the plate of late, but he's still the best defensive catcher in baseball. The Cards go with John Lackey (12-9, 2.79) here. He shut out the Brewers over seven innings on five hits last time out. The start before that was vs. these Reds, allowing two runs and seven hits over seven innings. Joey Votto is 3-for-9 off him with two homers and four RBIs. Cincinnati's Keyvius Sampson (2-5, 7.09) hasn't pitched since Sept. 14 as he left the team to deal with a family matter. He has lasted fewer than five innings in five of his nine starts. Sampson hasn't faced the Cardinals.
Key trends: The Reds are 1-4 in Sampson's past five vs. teams with a winning record. The Cards are 1-6 in Lackey's past seven vs. the NL Central. The over is 5-0 in Sampson's past five. The over is 5-1-1 in Lackey's past seven at home.
Early lean: Cardinals and under.
Pirates at Rockies (+124, 11)
As usual, the game in Colorado has the highest total on the board. But 11? Seems high because Pirates lefty J.A. Happ (9-8, 3.84) has been so good since coming over from Seattle in a trade. He has allowed six total runs in his past seven outings. He beat the visiting Rockies on Aug. 29, allowing one run over 5.2 innings. This is Happ's first-ever start in the thin air of Coors Field, however. Rockies lefty Chris Rusin (5-8, 5.11) allowed three runs over six innings opposite Happ in that Aug. 29 game. He is 4-2 with a 4.74 ERA at home this season. Aramis Ramirez is 4-for-11 with two homers and six RBIs off him.
Key trends: The Pirates are 4-0 in Happ's past four on the road. The Rockies are 2-7 in Rusin's past nine vs. teams with a winning record. The under is 6-0 in the Pirates' past six vs. lefties. The over is 4-1 in Rusin's past five.
Early lean: Pirates and under.
Giants at Padres (-118, 7)
This has the lowest total on the board. It's rookie Chris Heston (11-10, 3.61) for the Giants. His numbers are good as you can see, but the Giants have lost his past seven outings. Heston is 2-1 with a 3.26 ERA this year against the Padres. Matt Kemp is 2-for-8 with a double off him. Melvin Upton Jr. is 2-for-3. It's Tyson Ross (10-10, 3.18) for San Diego. I think he's traded this offseason -- he almost was at the deadline. Ross allowed one run over six innings last time out vs. Arizona. Ross is 1-1 with a 3.46 ERA in two starts against San Francisco. The Giants remain without first baseman Brandon Belt as he's dealing with a concussion. He hasn't played since Friday. Belt is hitting .280 with 18 homers and 68 RBIs.
Key trends: The Padres are 5-1 in Ross' past six in a series opener. The over is 5-2 in Heston's past seven road starts vs. teams with a losing record. The over is 4-0 in Heston's past four vs. San Diego.
Early lean: Padres and under.
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