Giants at Diamondbacks Picks and MLB Betting Odds
by Alan Matthews - 6/7/2013
Here we are 60 games or so into the Major League Baseball season, and the Arizona Diamondbacks continue to occupy first place in the National League West. Yet, I'm still not buying the Snakes. I thought they'd be around a .500 team and finish behind the Giants and Dodgers in the division. But Arizona is 34-26 and carries a 2.5-game lead in the division into Friday's series opener against the defending World Series Champion Giants (all stats will be as of Friday).
So how is Arizona doing it? Young lefty Patrick Corbin, who started Friday's series opener, has been brilliant and is probably the NL Cy Young winner right now. But what other pitcher really scares opponents? Saturday's starter, Trevor Cahill, has been solid but not overpowering. Ian Kennedy, fourth in the 2011 NL Cy Young voting, has been a massive disappointment and just allowed 10 runs and 13 hits in Thursday's loss to St. Louis, the worst outing of any starter this year. In fact, he was the first pitcher to allow at least 10 runs and 13 hits through the first four innings of a game in five years. Brandon McCarthy wasn't good when healthy and is now hurt. Wade Miley also hasn't been very good. However, the bullpen has been very good, and that's why Arizona is No. 6 in the NL in ERA at 3.78.
San Francisco, meanwhile, was supposed to have the best pitching staff in the league, and that's what won it the World Series despite a pretty mediocre lineup. That staff has disappointed with a 4.15 ERA, No. 12 in the National League. The Giants' only full-time starter with an ERA under 4.00 is Madison Bumgarner, who starts opposite Cahill on Saturday. Tim Lincecum is clearly a shell of his former self, and Matt Cain, a preseason Cy Young favorite, has been nothing short of terrible. The Giants actually have been pretty good offensively, ranking No. 6 in the NL in runs despite being second-to-last in homers -- part of that can be attributed to pitcher-friendly AT&T Park.
Giants at Diamondbacks Betting Story Lines
Arizona's Cahill (3-6, 3.27) is one of the better ground-ball pitchers in the league and has allowed just three home runs, but he does have some control problems with 29 walks. The Diamondbacks have alternated losses and wins in his past 11 starts, meaning the Snakes should win Saturday's game considering they lost his last start. It was Cahill's worst of the season as he allowed five runs and nine hits in five innings against the Cardinals. Arguably his best start of the year was April 30 at home against the Giants, allowing just a run and four hits in eight innings. Arizona lost that game 2-1, although Cahill didn't get a decision.
Reigning NL MVP Buster Posey is having another solid season, hitting .302 with seven homers and 31 RBI (great numbers for a catcher). He's just 2-for-9 in his career off Cahill with three strikeouts. Marco Scutaro leads the Giants with a .323 average and is 3-for-10 with three RBI in his career against Cahill. Angel Pagan is 6-for-12 in his career against Cahill but hasn't played since May 25 with a hamstring issue and isn't likely to in this series -- why the team hasn't put him on the DL is strange. No current Giant has ever gone yard against the pitcher.
The Giants' Bumgarner (4-4, 3.46) has a very good 3.08 ERA in 11 career appearances against Arizona. However, he has just one win since April 13, and the Giants have lost his past four starts. Bumgarner was good in one of those but allowed at least four runs in the other three. His best start of the season was opposite Cahill on April 30 in that 2-1 San Francisco win. The lefty blanked Arizona on three hits over seven innings.
Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt is the leading NL MVP candidate right now. He leads the NL in RBI with 54 -- has 13 in his past seven games, including at least one in six straight -- and is tied for fourth with 14 homers and No. 6 in batting at .333. He's a Triple Crown candidate. Goldschmidt is 3-for-12 with a homer in his career of Goldschmidt. Willie Bloomquist is 5-for-11 with a homer in his career of Bumgarner. Bloomquist started the year on the DL and only debuted on June 1. He's hitting .611 and has multiple-hit games in all four starts -- he didn't start Thursday's game but had a sacrifice fly as a pinch-hitter.
Giants at Diamondbacks MLB Betting Odds and Trends
At BetOnline, the Diamondbacks opened at -112 and the Giants at +102 with the total at 8.5. All trends entering Friday: San Francisco is 32-25-2 “over/under” (17-10 on road) and 21-38 on the runline. Arizona is 26-32-2 O/U (10-16-2 at home) and 31-29 on the runline.
San Francisco is 1-7 in its past eight road games. The Giants are 0-6 in their past six road games against right-handed starters. The Giants are 3-7 in Bumgarner's past 10 road starts against teams with a winning record. The Diamondbacks are 4-0 in their past four at home against teams with a winning record. Arizona is 9-4 in its past 13 against lefty starters. The Snakes are 4-1 in Cahill's past five against teams with a winning record. The over is 7-0 in San Francisco's past seven games. The over is 11-1-1 in Bumgarner's past 13 starts. The over is 6-0 in Arizona's past six. The under is 6-1 in Cahill's past seven home starts. The over is 5-2 in the past seven meetings. San Francisco is 7-1 in the past eight in Arizona.
Giants at Diamondbacks Picks and Betting Predictions
The Giants are great at home but just 10-17 on the road. Three of those wins came in a three-game sweep in Arizona. San Francisco leads the season series 4-2. If it's a one-run game, consider it a toss-up. The Giants have 12 one-run victories, second-most in the majors behind Arizona's 14. I trust Cahill more than Bumgarner right now. That loss/win trend continues. Take Arizona and the over.
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