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September 2nd 2014 - Posted at 5:00 PM ET

Scroll down to view tonight's 2 MLB picks. We were perfect with our 'Over/Under' wagers in August and aim to continue that in September! There is also one team that should enjoy a distinctive advantage in another matchup.

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Thursday marked the opening night of the football season and we could not be more excited! Last year was a huge success and those who were with us from Week 1 all the way to the Super Bowl profited greatly and saw Sports Profit System outdo all competitors! We are confident and certain of repeating that feat and welcome back loyal long-term clients who have rejoined us. 

Having said that, it is always worth remembering that profiting from sports is a daily grind and no easy task. It is a marathon and not a race and there will be both ups and downs along the way. Those who are realistic, patient and disciplined will reap the rewards. Because much like even championship winning teams, SPS will inevitably have a few bad weeks as well but we win a lot more than lose overall and will be at the very top by February! As such, the real value lies in long term success and results should only be evaluated at the end of the season.

Finally, although it does not affect SPS, we highly recommend that clients place their bets with a book that offers 'Reduced Juice'. Wagering at -105 vig/juice instead of -110 makes a huge difference over the course of a season! It is the primary distinction between clients who profit big and those that profit small since the picks are the same for everyone. 

Note: Experienced sports-bettors know the importance of shopping lines. We suggest that you shop for the best lines whenever possible since that half a point or so will sometimes decide the outcome and turn a win into a push or vice versa. 
 

#1: Take Kansas City Royals (-151) on the Money Line against Texas Rangers risking 2%
(Guthrie and Holland must start)

The Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals square off for Game 2 from Kauffman Stadium tonight. While this game wasn't originally in our plans, we had kept our eyes on the odds to see where they end up. The shift was quite drastic and that has opened up value on the Royals who were fairly priced at the opening odds by Vegas in our opinion.

After last night's narrow 4-3 defeat, the Rangers have now lost five of their last seven games and are 31 games below a .500 record this season! Texas owns the worst record in all of Major League Baseball! No one really saw this coming but it has happened. Both injuries and lack of a pitching staff have really hurt Texas and it appears that they have completely given up and simply can't wait for the disastrous season to end. Their motivation is simply not there anymore and Ron Washington is playing many inexperienced players to build for the future. 

Injuries are partly to blame for some of Texas' struggles but their starting pitching just has just not been solid. The pitching staff have a collective ERA of 4.69 with the starters at 5.04 and the bullpen at 4.12! They currently rank 29th in the league in both ERA and WHIP and have given up a combined 141 home runs to opposing teams! It becomes incredibly difficult to win ball games with such statistics.

Derek Holland will be making his first start of the year and is coming off of a serious and lengthy injury! He had knee surgery and has missed the entire season up until this point. He's had rehab starts in the Minors over the past month but has been less than stellar in those showings and will find tonight's contest even more challenging. After such a long layoff, it is hard for even the very best to come out and pitch a gem. He'll not only find it tough tonight but may also not last long which would force Texas to use its unimpressive bullpen. Holland has also previously struggled against the Royals in his career as he has a lifetime ERA of 4.48. This is the best Royals team in a long time so it's reasonable to expect his woes to continue.  

While the Rangers pitching has been poor, their offense hasn't done much to bail them out either. The offense has been held to 3 runs or less in 12 of their last 15 games and they have lost 6 straight when scoring less than 3 runs. We don't expect them to perform any better tonight when they go up against a veteran in Jeremy Guthrie. Guthrie is a mdiocre pitcher but he is a competitive pro and often keeps his team in ball games. He's also finished the season off strongly throughout his career going 11-4 in September starts! The Royals also have one of the best bullpens in MLB and that is a key reason behind their success. After the 6th inning, the Royals have been nearly automatic with Kelvin Herrera and Wade Davis setting up closer Greg Holland who has 41 saves and an impressive 1.63 ERA this season! 

There are simply too many issues with the Rangers right now while Kansas City is in a dogfight with the Tigers for the top spot in the AL Central! The Royals are not only the more motivated team but the more talented one in this contest. There wasn't much value at opening odds in this one but the shift in price has become too good to pass up on. Take the team that has a more to play for and cares about each and every win.

Other notable facts to consider:

  • Texas has used 59 different players and a team-high 20 rookies this season!
  • Kansas City is 11-5 in its last 16 home games.
  • Texas is just 5-19 on the road when the total is set at 8 to 8.5 runs this season!
  • Royals are a perfect 10-0 since April 19 as a home favorite off a win in which they never trailed and it's not the 1st game of a series! 
     

#2: Take the OVER 6.5 Total in Arizona Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres risking 2%
(Miley and Despaigne must start)

These two teams are among the worst in the NL and have nothing but pride to play for in the remainder of the season. At this time of the year, it is these matchups that sometimes provide the most value and we believe that is the case tonight.

Looking at some trends from both teams recently, there are strong indicators that this particular game turns into a higher scoring matchup. Both sides have produced an above average amount of 'Unders' recently and the public is jumping on that bandwagon. However while the final scores have fallen short, it hasn't been for a lack of production at the plate. Both teams are seeing the ball well and hitting, they just haven't converted those into runs. The D-backs and Padres are averaging 7.625 hits per game over their last 8 games. Therefore they are getting runners on base , their failure has been in bringing them home. They have left a lot of runners stranded recently but we expect that to change tonight. The Padres have left an average of 7.65 runners on base over their last 8 games, including 13 last night! Arizona on the other hand has left an average of 7.75 runners on base over the same 8-game span. Had either team gotten that one extra hit necessary to drive a runner or two in, we could be looking at much higher scoring games! It is only a matter of time before they begin to convert those runners into scores and tonight seems like an ideal matchup for that to happen.

Arizona is a team who had seemingly accepted their fate and had given up on the season a number of weeks ago. Kirk Gibson is giving extended playing time to a number of younger and more inexperienced players to prepare them for future. They are in rebuilding mode and are okay with young players making mistakes in what is now a meaningless season so they can be ready for next season. This means some of these players are learning their trade on the job and are more error-prone than the average MLB player. For that reason, Arizona have made more errors in the second half of the season than most teams! Yet they've now gone 5 games without producing a fielding error but we believe that'll change tonight. Remember this is the same unit that was producing as many as 5 errors in a game just a couple of weeks ago and we don't believe they have completely alleviated all of their fielding issues in a short period of time. Producing errors typically leads to base runners scoring and we believe we will see a bit of that tonight. 

Both starting pitchers in this matchup have proven to be less than reliable this season. Arizona will send lefty Wade Miley to the mound who has been having a mediocre season at best. On the year, he has given up 174 hits and 90 runs in 176 innings of work which gives him a 4.29 ERA this season! Miley is also 1-4 against the Padres in his career with an ERA of 4.98! He has often struggled against this team and home-runs have troubled him this season. It wouldn't surprise us if he had another fairly poor outing tonight.

Meanwhile the Padres will send Odrisamer Despaigne to the hill. He has been promising at times but has not seen a ton of action this season having started only 12 games. Now that the scouting report is bigger on him, he has struggled in his last few starts, getting progressively worse as his ERA is 5.06 in his last 16 innings pitched! In short, neither pitcher can be trusted to produce a quality outing, especially when both of these offenses have been producing hits recently but even if they do, the bullpens that follow them are more than capable of giving up a run or two. 

With this total listed at just 6.5, it doesn't take much for it to fly 'Over'. A couple of extra base hit or a multi-run homer is possibly all it will take. A 3-3 tie at any point in the game will also secure the win. Given how these pitchers have struggled and respective fielding issues, a higher scoring game is a likely scenario. These teams have a few more runs in them than they have recently shown while they are not the most solid defensively. We expect this to be a game where offenses break out a bit and put some runs on the board. This total is a run or two too low.




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