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August 9, 2015 (Posted at 11:00 AM ET)

Picks will be posted at 2:00 PM ET on weekdays and 11:00 AM ET on weekends.

Take Tampa Bay Rays on the Money Line (-166) against NY Mets risking 4.98% of the bankroll to win 3%.
(Archer and Colon must start for wager to have action)

We feel that this is an dangerous spot for the club from Queens. With this being an interleague game, these two squads have not met often and that could pose a problem for the Mets offense as they will be facing one of the very best pitchers in the game in Chris Archer, for the very first time! Archer's 180 strikeouts is the 4th highest in the league, and his 10.9 K's per 9 innings mark ranks 1st among right-handers! He is an Ace and has the ability to navigate through nearly every lineup and leave batters baffled at the plate. He has struck out at least 6 batters in each of his last 8 starts. The Mets offense, or lack thereof at time has been a major concern for this team all season and even though they have improved recently, we believe they will struggle this afternoon. Having virtually no previous experience against one of the top pitchers in the league, puts New York at a severe disadvantage in this contest and will likely cost them.

Bartolo Colon is still getting things done but at 42 years of age, he doesn't have the same stuff that he used to. Prior to his quality start against the struggling Marlins, he had dropped his previous 5 games, taking the loss in each. Colon has 17 years of experience in the Majors, in fact when he first made his debut, his counterpart; Archer was just 9 years old! While that is certainly an interesting fact, these two pitchers are at completely opposite ends of their respective careers. Archer is already a quality hurler but has not even reached his full potential yet while Colon is past his prime and is toward the very end of his career. There is no doubt that Archer is the better pitcher at this point. Over his last 4 games, he has been nearly unhittable; compiling a miniscule 1.33 ERA in his last four starts. Colon, on the other hand, has struggled, producing a 5.96 ERA over the same span.

Colon has had experience against the Rays in his career. And even though he does own a winning record, his ERA is an unflattering 4.07 with a WHIP of 1.407. The Tampa Ray bats have been red hot recently and could pose an issue for Colon this afternoon. Asdrubal Cabrera is currently on an 11 game hitting streak and batting .525 with a career-best six consecutive multi-hit efforts, while Evan Longoria is currently batting .455 over an eight-game streak for Tampa Bay. The Rays managed to snap the Mets recent 7 game winning streak, so it will certainly be interesting to see how the players react having tasted defeat for the first time in a while.

There are a number of trends in this particular situation that we feel gives the Rays a distinct advantage. The Mets have struggled on the road, especially with Colon taking the hill. Even though this is a higher valued game than some on the card, we do still believe there is value in this matchup at these particular odds. Given how both pitchers have performed not just recently but over the course of the season, we expect Archer to producing another quality outings and the Rays offense to get the timely hits needed off Colon to come away with a closely contested win.

Other notable facts to consider:

  • Mets have won just one of their last 5 interleague games as an underdog.
  • Rays are 10-3 in their last 13 interleague games vs. teams with winning records!
  • Mets are just 3-13 in their last 16 games as an underdog in the +151 to +200 range.
  • Rays have won 12 of Archer’s last 15 starts after scoring 5 or more runs in their previous game.

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