It's a big getaway day on Thursday around the majors with a handful of matinees, so you might see regulars all over baseball out of the starting lineup after playing at night on Wednesday. I have a feeling the Detroit Tigers aren't big fans of interleague baseball right now as they will play a sixth total game already against a National League team on Thursday and fourth in the NL park, meaning the Tigers have to sit one of their big bats in DH Victor Martinez when that happens because he's not healthy enough to play in the field.
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Tigers at Pirates (-128, 7)
A 12:35 p.m. first pitch on the MLB Network (out-of-market only). Could be the pitching matchup of the day as well -- it's hard enough on the hitters having to play about 14 hours after Wednesday's game ends. It's Jordan Zimmermann for Detroit. He looked very deserving of that $110 million free-agent deal this winter as the former National had one of the most dominating efforts of the first week, shutting out the Yankees on two hits over seven innings. Both hits were singles and one runner was then wiped out when caught stealing. Zimmermann didn't face Pittsburgh last year while with Washington. Andrew McCutchen is 2-for-6 career off him with a pair of solo homers. David Freese is 2-for-5 with a homer and double. It's Pirates ace Gerrit Cole. He normally would have started Opening Day but was pushed back after missing some of spring training with inflammation around his ribcage. Cole definitely didn't look 100 percent in his debut Saturday in Cincinnati, allowing three runs and five hits over just 4.2 innings. Detroit's Miguel Cabrera is 2-for-6 career off him. J.D. Martinez is 2-for-5.
Key trends: The Pirates are 8-1 in Cole's past nine interleague starts. The "over/under" has gone under in four of Cole's past five starts overall.
Early lean: Tigers (Cole not in full form yet) and under.
Padres at Phillies (-131, 8)
A 1:05 p.m. ET start. The Phillies could actually be pretty good as soon as next year as they've done a good job stockpiling young pitching in their teardown and rebuild. And one of those good young pitchers is Vincent Velasquez, who was a big part of the haul acquired from Houston in the Ken Giles trade this offseason -- that looks like a steal so far for Philly as Giles couldn't even win the Astros' closer job and has struggled in the early going. The 23-year-old Velasquez shut out the Mets on three hits over six innings in his Philly debut. He struck out nine. Velasquez didn't face the Padres last year as a rookie. San Diego acquired lefty Drew Pomeranz this offseason in the Yonder Alonso trade with Oakland, and Pomeranz won his San Diego debut in Colorado by allowing two runs and four hits over five innings, striking out seven. Not many Phillies have seen the guy. Carlos Ruiz is 2-for-3 with an RBI.
Key trends: The Phillies are 5-16 in their past 21 Thursday games. The under is 4-1 in their past five vs. a lefty.
Early lean: Phillies and under.
White Sox at Twins (-114, 8)
A 1:10 p.m. ET start here. Will Minnesota be 0-8 entering this one? I actually projected the Twins to finally win a game on Wednesday. But the Twins got bad news before that game as closer Glen Perkins has been lost to the DL with shoulder troubles, and we all know that can lead to major problems especially as Perkins' velocity has been dropping. Perkins blew his lone save opportunity so far -- it's not like the Twins have had many leads. Kevin Jepsen fills in. Ervin Santana (0-0, 2.25) starts on the mound for Minnesota. He beat the White Sox in his lone start against them last year, allowing two runs in seven innings. Austin Jackson can't hit the guy, going 1-for-17. Mat Latos looks to build on a terrific White Sox debut as he held Oakland to no runs and just one hit last Thursday in a victory. Latos has never faced the Twins as his entire career before this was in the NL.
Key trends: The Sox have lost six straight in Game 3 of a series. The Twins are 4-0 in Santana's past four on five days of rest. The under is 5-0 in his past five starts.
Early lean: Twins and under.
Braves at Nationals (-164, 7.5)
As if lousy Atlanta needed any more bad news, outfielder Hector Olivera has been placed on administrative leave and the commissioner's office has begun an investigation into an alleged domestic dispute he was involved in with a woman early Wednesday at a hotel in Virginia. Remember, MLB isn't putting up with this kind of stuff now and Olivera is probably looking at an eventual suspension. He was a big part of the Alex Wood trade last summer with the Dodgers. Olivera is hitting .211 with two RBIs. The Braves throw Julio Teheran. He was very inconsistent last year and has been in two starts this season. He faced the Nationals in Atlanta on April 4 and allowed two runs in six innings. But then against St. Louis last time out, he gave up five runs in four. Bryce Harper eats him alive, going 11-for-25 with three doubles, four homers and six RBIs. It's Tanner Roark for Washington. He struggled in his season debut last Thursday, allowing nine hits and three earned runs in four innings against the Marlins. Roark has a 2.01 ERA in 12 career outings against the Braves. Freddie Freeman hits .409 off him career.
Key trends: The Braves are 2-7 in Teheran's past nine road starts. They are 0-5 in his past five vs. Washington. The Nats are 4-1 in Roark's past five vs. Atlanta. The under is 5-0 in those five.
Early lean: Nationals, a Harper homer and under.
Yankees at Blue Jays (-144, 8)
New York catcher Brian McCann missed Wednesday's game with a toe injury; he had to leave Tuesday's after getting hit there on a foul tip. X-rays showed no fractures but blood was pooling below his nail when he crouched between the plate. So monitor whether he plays here. McCann is hitting .500 on the young season with two homers. The Yanks could use all hands on deck against Jays ace Marcus Stroman (1-0, 5.40). He's still young so still a bit up-and-down. He was very good in the opener against the Rays but knocked around some last time vs. Boston. Stroman was 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA last year vs. New York. McCann is 2-for-13 off him. Brett Gardner has two homers and five RBIs in 13 at-bats. Nathan Eovaldi is on the mound for New York. He had a great record in 2015 despite a high ERA because of great run support. His offense bailed him out of his debut last Thursday as Eovaldi allowed five runs in five innings vs. Houston. Eovaldi allowed one run in 6.1 innings in 2015 vs. the Jays. Troy Tulowitzki is 2-for-8 off him with two RBIs.
Key trends: The Yanks are 7-0 in Eovaldi's past seven on the road. The Jays are 8-2 in Stroman's past 10. The over is 5-0 in Eovaldi's past five on the road and 4-0 in Stroman's past four at home.
Early lean: Jays and over.
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