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August 20, 2015 (Posted at 3:00 PM ET)

Take Pittsburgh Pirates (-135) on the Money Line against SF Giants risking 4.05% of bankroll to win 3%.
(Morton and Peavy must start for wager to have action)

The Giants are coming off an extremely tough series with the St Louis Cardinals and things likely won't get much easier for them tonight when they travel to PNC Park to take on the Pirates. The Pirates currently occupy the top spot in the Wild Card race and have a 7 game lead over their opponents. 

The Pirates will send right-hander Charlie Morton to the mound for tonight's contest who has plenty of experience against this San Francisco lineup. The veteran has made 11 career starts against the Giants, posting an impressive 2.84 ERA versus San Francisco. He has managed to bounce back after a rough month of July and since the calendar turned to August, Morton owns a respectable 3.44 ERA and an extremely impressive 22:3 strikeout to walk ratio. Pittsburgh has been as dominant as it gets at PNC Park this season as well with an impressive 40-19 record at home. 

Jake Peavy will take the mound for the Giants tonight. There is no question that Jake Peavy is not the pitcher that he was in years past. He is certainly past his prime and has actually become somewhat more of a liability on the mound than an asset. He is an extremely animated and emotional pitcher and has shown his ability to get inside his own head and allow that to affect his performance. 

The San Francisco Giants have a legitimate complaint to believe that they may be cursed. This team managed to win the World Series in 2010, 2012 and 2014, but interestingly enough have failed to make the playoffs in the subsequent two odd-years in between. (2011 & 2013) and are currently in jeopardy of missing out again. They received some added bad news yesterday when it was announced that outfielder Hunter Pence was headed bad to the disabled list with a strained oblique. It is well known that Pence has been the heart and soul of this team and their success when he is in the lineup has been astonishing. He has only started in 52 games this season due to injury, but the Giants are an impressive 34-18 when he had taken the field.  

PNC Park was last year's one game Wildcard Playoffs. In that game it was the Giants who managed to come away with the victory and dash the Pirates post season hopes before going on to win the World Series. It's interesting that this rematch takes place now where the Pirates are in firm control of their own playoff destiny and have a chance to put the Giants pretty much out of the conversation with a successful series over the next few nights. The Giants certainly won't go down without a fight and with Madison Bumgarner taking the mound tomorrow (the same pitcher who knocked Pittsburgh out of the playoffs last year) the Pirates could find themselves in an 0-2 hole if they don't come away with the win tonight. Look for the Pirates to come away with the win tonight. 

Other notable facts to consider:

  • Pirates are 7-1 in Morton's last 8 home starts.
  • Giants are 1-4 in their last 5 road games vs. a right-handed starter.
  • Pirates have won 5 out of 5 at home when the total has been set at 8 or 8.5 runs! 
  • Giants are just 1-9 in their last 10 road games vs. a team with a winning record.
  • Pirates have won 14 of 20 as a home favorite in the -125 to -150 range!

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