July 30, 2015 (Posted at 5:00 PM ET)
After an unlucky 9th inning loss with the Mariners (underdogs) on Saturday afternoon, SPS has quietly put together a 6-game winning streak! It isn't short term results, however, that we concern ourselves with. The goal has always been to finish the MLB season with the highest profit among all handicappers and to top charts as we did in NFL and NBA, and that objective remains a likely possibility.
Take Minnesota Twins (-121) on the Money Line against Seattle Mariners risking 3% of the bankroll.
(Hughes and Happ must start for wager to have action)
The Twins come into this contest having lost 4 in a row and at this point in the season, it can be argued that their stock has never been lower. Many people are already writing off this team, despite the fact that they still own a winning record. Yes the Twins have had their share of struggles recently, but in such a long season, losing streaks (by all teams) are inevitable. With so many already writing this team off, we feel that tonight is the perfect opportunity for them to snap out of their recent funk against an opponents who is has struggled in their own right this season as well.
The Seattle Mariners come into this contest on a losing streak of their own, having lost 4 out of their last 5 games. At 10 games under .500, they have had undoubtedly had a very disappointing season and have a very slim chance of making the playoffs this year. This is the type of situation when players tend to 'switch off' and not give 100% on a daily basis anymore and that can be a dangerous thing. The exact opposite is true for Twins however who are still very much in the hunt and in fact need to pick up their urgency as they have several teams breathing down their necks for that Wild Card spot. Despite their struggles, the Twins are a team that has beaten up on what would considered "lesser competition" this season as they 31-19 against teams with losing records, a profile that clearly the Mariners fit into.
Minnesota should also have an advantage on the mound tonight when Phil Hughes takes on JA Happ. Hughes is undefeated in his last 8 starts and has the opportunity to keep his hot streak going, while Happ meanwhile owns a 7.11 ERA over his last 3 starts! Happ is also coming off his shortest start of the year since he recorded only 5 outs against the Blue Jays before being taken out of the game. Let’s not forget that Toronto is a team that has hit left handed pitchers extremely well this season and that is something Minnesota has shown there are capable of doing as well. They are averaging over 5 runs per game against left handed pitchers this season! Tonight, 5 runs could be all it takes to seal the victory.
Seattle could find themselves hurting on the offensive end as not having the lefty Robinson Cano in the lineup tonight takes a big bat out of their offense. What's even less encouraging however is that the Mariner's best bat, Nelson Cruz has hit just .190 against Hughes in 21 at-bats! Meanwhile, the Twins’ Miguel Sano is proving to be one of the best young hitters in the game and Seattle pitching staff like Happ has never seen his power before. In such a hitter friendly ball park like Target Field, Happ may be surprised by the home-run capabilities of several of the Minnesota bats.
To Minnesota's credit, they are 2 games above .500 and currently hold a Wild Card spot in the playoffs. This is a quality team, who simply has been playing some sloppy baseball as of late. They came into the season with not a lot of expectations and when they actually started to show just how good of a team that they are, people were eager to jump on board. They have proved doubters wrong in the past this season and let's not forget that this is a team who has been extremely tough at home this year. Despite being swept in their series against Pittsburgh, they are still 32-20 at Target Field this season! Also after such an embarrassing performance last night where they gave up 10 runs to the Pirates, we fully expect them to be in bounce back mode tonight. This team is 7-3 this season after a game where they allowed double-digit runs so they have been a team that has historically been able to clean up their act in put in a quality performance after getting beat up the previous night. Twins had 3 errors in yesterday's game but we expect Paul Moritor to have had a stern talking to with some of his players and for them to play a cleaner game today. The fact that young prospect Polanco is starting at short-stop sends a signal to the rest of his guys that he won't tolerate mistakes and that a shake-up is required.
The Twins have had the Mariner’s number recently at Target Field having won 4 of the last 5 meetings. At this reduced price, there's definite value on the home side and we would in fact have played them all the way up to -135. Minnesota is undoubtedly the better team in this contest and given how much they have struggled as of late, they will be desperate and hungry to come away with the win.
Other notable facts to consider:
- Phil Hughes is 14-3 after his team has suffered 3 or more consecutive losses!
- Twins are 31-20 against opponents that strand an average of 6.9 or less men on base per game.
- Mariners are just 6-13 when the total is set at 8 or 8.5 runs!
- Twins are 21-14 after three or more consecutive losses over the last two years.
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