June 5, 2015 (Posted at 6:00 PM ET)
Picks will be posted at 3:00 PM ET on Saturday.
Take San Diego Padres (-122) on the Money Line against Cincinnati Reds risking 3% of bankroll.
(Ross and Moscot must start for wager to have action)
The Padres made a lot of impressive moves in the offseason to bolster their roster and were highly touted coming into the season but sitting at 27-28 thus far, some believe they have fallen short of expectations. While their record may not necessarily suggest it, they have actually played well this season. For a squad that has had a lot of new additions, playing .500 ball is not bad at this early stage. It often takes such clubs several months to find proper chemistry and cohesion with so many new faces. The Cleveland Cavaliers are a perfect example. They were a team that had a lot of changes and went through a trying period early on but once they started to gel and players embraced their new roles, things quickly turned around. Something similar is happening for the Padres having won 6 of their last 10 and now having a chance get back to a .500 record with a victory tonight!
It's also worth mentioning that the Padres have played by far the toughest schedule in the league up until this point of the season! 47 of their first 55 games have been against teams with winning records! No other club has had to endure this type of rigorous schedule and had they not, chances are they would be well above a .500 record. We believe they will welcome the opportunity to face a sub .500 club tonight.
The Padres will be sending Tyson Ross to the hill. Ross has been one of the more consistent pitchers in the league and has given up 3 or less runs in 10 of his past 11 starts! He's a pitcher that doesn't make many mistakes and his lack of wins is often due to poor run support rather than a struggle on the mound. He has had great success against Cincinnati in his career going 3-0 with a miniscule 0.78 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in 3 career starts! In 55 at-bats against Ross, the Reds have only hit a combined .109 as a team having accumulated only 6 total hits, with just one going for extra-bases! Two of his 3 career starts have been at Great American ballpark, so he is familiar with and has had success in this venue in recent past.
The Reds have had some late activity in regards to who will be on the hill tonight. It was supposed to be Raisel Iglesias getting the start but a late scratch means that Jon Moscot will be called upon on short notice. Moscot will be making his Major League debut tonight and preparing on start on short notice isn't going to put the odds in his or Cincinnati's favor! Nerves could well play a role on a Friday night in front of the passionate fans at Great American Ballpark and the watching world. Devin Mesoraco is still out at catcher and he's a very important player to this ball club not only for his impact behind the plate and his influence (leadership) but also his big bat! He was a home run threat but with him out, Barnhart will be inserted in the catcher role once again. He still has some learning to do and doesn't have the same understanding with the Reds' relief core. To have inexperience both on the mound and behind the plate is rarely a recipe for success at this level.
San Diego has the edge on the mound not only in the starting role but also when it comes to relief pitching! They have the better bullpen in this contest. Their pen on the road has been better than Cincinnati's bullpen at home and they have former Braves closer, Craig Kimbrel at their disposal. The fact that they had yesterday off means the coach can call upon any of his relievers whereas Chapman (Reds closer) has worked on back to back nights and will likely be rested tonight. If the Padres can avoid costly fielding errors, they should come away with the victory. This is a good price to lay with a team that has numerous big advantages going for it tonight and will be keen to start its road trip with a win.
Other notable facts to consider:
- San Diego has won the last 4 meetings against the Reds!
- Reds are only 11-27 in their last 38 series openers.
- Padres are 5-2 in their last 7 games following a day of rest.
- Reds are 6-14 in their last 20 games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30!
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