MLB Baseball Free Picks

New York Yankees (5-4) at Houston Astros (5-5)

Watch: April 7, 7:10 p.m. Eastern, ESPN

Masahiro Tanaka (1-0, 1.46 ERA) (NYY) +135 / +1.5 runs (-150) / Over 7.5 (-120)
Justin Verlander (1-0, 4.09 ERA) (HOU) -150 / -1.5 runs (+130) / Under 7.5 runs (+100)

The Yankees stumbled through an easy first nine games of 2019, needing a weekend sweep of the Orioles to get over the .500 mark. Now they’ll head to Houston to take on the Astros, who are fresh off a sweep of the Athletics.

Expected starter Justin Verlander has had the Yankees’ number of late. Since 2016, Verlander is 2-0 with a 0.84 ERA in three starts (21.1 IP) against the Bombers. Aaron Judge and the resurgent Gary Sanchez are 1-for-12 combined against the Virginia native.

Masahiro Tanaka has struggled mightily against Houston in his career. In four career starts against the Astros, he’s 0-2 with an 8.35 ERA. George Springer, the team leader in OPS at the moment (.906), is 4-for-12 against Tanaka with two home runs. Carlos Correa has gone deep twice in 13 at-bats against New York’s expected starter (5-for-13 overall), and Michael Brantley has three hits, including a home run, in nine tries.

MLB Free Play: Astros runline

Oakland Athletics (6-7) at Baltimore Orioles (4-5)

Watch: April 7, 7:05 p.m. Eastern

Marco Estrada (0-0, 2.76 ERA) (OAK) -135 / -1.5 runs (+110) / Over 10 runs (-105)
Andrew Cashner (1-1, 5.40 ERA) (BAL) +125 / +1.5 runs (-130) / Under 10 runs (-115)

The Athletics were swept over the weekend by the Astros, while the Orioles met the same fate against the Yankees. But like most teams facing Baltimore these days, Oakland appears to have a significant advantage.

Marco Estrada has a wealth of experience against the Orioles from his days with the Blue Jays. Since 2016, he’s made 13 starts against the O’s, going 7-2 with a 3.43 ERA. He averages 10.1 strikeouts per nine innings against Baltimore, significantly higher than his career figure of 7.9.

Khris Davis is one of several Athletics with great career numbers against Andrew Cashner, going 6-for-17 (.353) with a home run and six RBI. In his last two starts against Oakland, Cashner is 0-1 with a ghastly 14.85 ERA. If the A’s can chase Cashner quickly, they should be able to feast on a Baltimore bullpen that’s allowed the most earned runs in baseball to date (36).

MLB Free Play: Athletics runline  


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