Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 12:15 PM EST.
7:10 PM EST. If things go swimmingly for the Tigers, they have a 50% chance of winning here. The more likely scenario is that they don’t get every bounce and lose. Daniel Norris is a young pitcher who showed some good things in 2016, especially in September. However, he was whacked more often than not last season and he’s still getting whacked more often than not. In seven starts, Norris has a BB/K split of 19/31 over 37 innings. His WHIP this year of 1.74 is the highest among starting pitchers with six or more starts. His WHIP over his last five starts is 1.93. Norris is always deep in the count. His first-pitch strike rate was 38% last game and is 49% on the year. The more pitches a batter sees, the better his chances and Norris throws more pitches per batter than any qualified starter in the game. Norris has potential but he nibbles, he’s hugely inconsistent and therefore we have to view him as a work-in-progress and massive risk when favored instead of an MLB-ready contributor. His 5.44 xERA doesn’t suggest anything otherwise either.
Nick Martinez is not going to dazzle anyone but what he will do is work quickly, throw strikes and induce groundballs and that’s enough to get our endorsement here. Martinez has just 15 K’s in 30 innings but he’s only walked six batters. He throws 94 MPH and keeps the ball down. Martinez is risky to be sure. All pitchers that don’t generate a slot of swings and misses are but as a dog in this spot, he and the Rangers are worthy of a bet. Additionally, the Rangers are on a roll and that, too, comes into play.
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Texas +129 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.58)