Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 1:45 PM EST
Boston +152 over MIAMI
6:40 PM EST. We understand that the Marlins are playing well while the Red Sox are not but isn’t that the best time to be buying? The Marlins are also coming off a double-header sweep over the Phillies on Sunday followed by another win over the Phillies yesterday. Still, the Marlins with Sandy Alcantara (RHP) starting cannot be priced in this range over the Red Sox.
Alcantara has started four lousy games this year. He was on the injured list for a time but came off on August 30th to face the Rays. At first glance, he looks like a prime regression candidate due to ERA/xERA gap and longstanding issue with walks but he did seem to turn a corner in his final 10 starts of last year with increased sinker usage, higher velocity, and very decent control. Still, his league-average swing and miss rate says his 21 K’s in 23 innings or strikeout rate isn’t likely to stick. Alcantara’s ERA (3.78) is absolutely more likely to go up than down. His 1.44 WHIP says so and so does his xERA.
Tanner Houck (RHP - BOS) makes his MLB debut and that’s always risky but this kid has paid his dues and some even suggest he has overpaid them. Houck relies heavily on a worm-killing two-seamer. It’s the pitch that wowed scouts when he was at the University of Missouri, and while it’s once again his go-to, that wasn’t the case over the first half of 2018. The Red Sox had Houck put his signature pitch in his back pocket and primarily throw four-seamers against Carolina League competition. The reasoning was sound, but the results weren’t particularly pretty. A fish out of water without his sinker, Houck got hit around.
Come midseason, the Boston brain trust decided that Houck should go back to his old bread and butter. The news came as a relief. His best pitch back at the forefront of his arsenal, Houck proceeded to reestablish himself as one of the organization’s top prospects. He dominated the rest of the way. Houck was a first round pick in the 2017 draft. He uses four pitches including a 92-94 MPH fastball that touches 98 on occasion. He started 17 games for Pawtucket last year and in 107 innings, he struck out 117 batters while allowing just a .246 BAA.
Tanner Houck’s story doesn’t end there. He’s an adopted kid, adopted by his adopted father and adopted sister. He has already started a foundation for adopted kids and while betting on first-timers is risky business, this kid is determined and willing to take on any challenge that comes his way without batting an eyelid. At the end of the day, we have no idea how he is going to do but we know for sure that Sandy Alcantara and the Marlins are way overpriced here.
A GREAT OFFER FOR SPORTSWAGERS READERS:
We’re offering a better and cheaper alternative to cable TV. You will literally save thousands of dollars. If you’re sick of paying a fortune for programming that you don’t even want or need, this is for you. All pro sports -- EVERY GAME, tons of college football and basketball games and tons of regular programming (non-sports). Over 2500 channels all in HD for a mere $20 per month. You have to be nuts not to get it.
Boston +152 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 3.04)