Free MLB Picks for Wednesday, May 1, 2019
With Wednesday the first day of May, let's take a look at some updated Bovada futures odds . The Dodgers and Yankees are co-favorites to win the World Series at +450. I still think the Yankees are rather flawed but hard to get much of a read on them until fully healthy - which likely won't be until after the All-Star break. The defending champion Red Sox have slipped to +1500. Two huge risers are the Tampa Bay Rays and St. Louis Cardinals, as both are +1000. The Rays continue to lead the AL East and the Cardinals the same in the NL Central. Oddsmakers favor St. Louis in the Central at +150 but still have the Yankees as -105 favorites in the East. Not much respect yet for the AL Central-leading Twins, who are +205 to win it with Cleveland at -300. The Dodgers are the biggest division favorites at -750 in the NL West.
A's at Red Sox (-137, 9.5)
MLB Network game and first pitch of the day at 1:05 p.m. ET. Oakland's Mike Fiers (2-2, 7.03) has been wildly inconsistent this year after getting a nice deal to re-sign with the A's this offseason. Fiers had allowed six runs in three straight starts but held the Blue Jays to two over a season-high seven innings last time out. Fiers beat Boston on April 2, shutting out the Red Sox over six innings. J.D. Martinez is 8-for-17 with two homers and two doubles career against him. Boston's Hector Velazquez (0-2, 3.86) has made seven appearances this year, three of them starts. He's not likely to go long enough to qualify for a win as Velazquez has yet to pitch more than 3.1 innings. Oakland's Khris Davis is 2-for-4 with a homer off him.
Key trends: The A's are 11-5 in Fiers' past 16 starts. The "over/under" is 4-1 in his past five on four days of rest.
Early lean: Red Sox and over.
Cardinals at Nationals (-165, 7.5)
The Cards' trade for Paul Goldschmidt looks more and more like a heist of the Diamondbacks every day and he's a big reason why St. Louis leads the Central. Paul DeJong is also off to a terrific start. Not sure that will continue. It's Miles Mikolas (2-2, 5.29) on the bump. He allowed four runs and three homers over five innings last time out in a home loss to the Reds. Mikolas has surrendered eight dingers this year after 16 all of 2018. Juan Soto is 2-for-5 with a homer off him. Washington's Max Scherzer (1-3, 4.12) was better in his last start, allowing two runs and striking out 10 over seven innings but took a no-decision vs. the Padres. Goldschmidt can't hit him, going 1-for-18 with 10 strikeouts.
Key trends: The Nats have lost Scherzer's past four at home. The over is 6-1 in Mikolas' previous seven on the road.
Early lean: Cards on runline and over.
Padres at Braves (-155, 9)
Likely the Padres will remain without NL Rookie of the Year favorite Fernando Tatis Jr. as he injured his hamstring accidentally doing the splits on a play in the field Sunday. He is hitting .300 with six homers and 13 RBIs. It's former first-round pick Cal Quantrill making his big-league for the Padres. The team will go to a six-man rotation at least for one turn through to give an extra day of rest to a few other young guys. The son of former big leaguer Paul Quantrill, Cal was selected by the Padres with the eighth overall pick in the 2016 draft and probably would have gone higher if not off Tommy John surgery. Quantrill owns a 4.68 ERA in five starts for Triple-A El Paso this season but has been much better of late. Atlanta southpaw Max Fried (3-1, 2.30) comes off his worst start of the year, allowing four runs and seven hits over 5.1 innings. It's Fried's first look at the Friars.
Key trends: The Braves are 5-2 in their past seven at home vs. a lefty. The under is 5-0-2 in Strahm's past seven on the road.
Early lean: Braves and under.
Astros at Twins (+150, 8.5)
ESPN game. Houston's Collin McHugh (3-2, 4.78) was very good his first four starts but hasn't been in the past two, surrendering 13 runs and 12 hits (five homers) over nine innings. McHugh does have an excellent 1.06 WHIP along with 37 strikeouts in 32 innings. DH Nelson Cruz has seen him the most by far of any Twin, going 6-for-26 with two homers and seven strikeouts. Minnesota took a flier on lefty Martin Perez (3-0, 4.44) this offseason, and he has been about as good as could have been hoped. Perez allowed a run over six innings in his most recent outing vs. Baltimore. Jose Altuve is a .324 hitter off Perez with six doubles in 34 at-bats.
Key trends: The Astros are 4-1 in McHugh's past five vs. the Twins. The under is 8-2-1 in his previous 11 vs. teams with a winning record.
Early lean: Astros and over.
Dodgers at Giants (+127, 7)
You may or may not have noticed, but the Dodgers' Cody Bellinger is having one of the best Aprils in MLB history. He has become just the fourth player in league history with 14 homers before May 1, joining Christian Yelich (also this year), Alex Rodriguez (2007) and Albert Pujols (2006). Bellinger on Monday passed Juan Gonzalez and Mark McGwire (both in 1998) with a record 37 RBIs before May 1. Keep in mind, though, that this season started March 28, so Bellinger has a handful more games played pre-April than guys did years ago. Bellinger is 3-for-11 with a homer against Giants lefty Madison Bumgarner (1-4, 4.30). MadBum pitched in L.A. on April 2 and allowed five runs in six innings in the loss. He is 15-12 with a 2.59 ERA in 33 career appearances against the Dodgers. L.A. lefty Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-1, 2.96) has 33 strikeouts and just two walks this season. He beat the Giants opposite MadBum on April 2 (7 IP, 2 ER). Buster Posey is a career .306 hitter off him.
Key trends: The Dodgers are 5-2 in the past seven when Ryu faces Bumgarner. The under is 5-2 in Ryu's past seven in the series.
Early lean: Dodgers and under.
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