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August 14, 2017

There is one pick today.

Take Kansas City Royals (-102) on the ML against Oakland Athletics risking 3.06% to win 3%.
(Junis and Cotton must start for wager to have action)

The Kansas City Royals had been struggling mightily over the last couple of weeks and where they were once thought as a near 'lock' for the playoffs this season, their lengthy losing streak has allowed the competition to not only keep pace, but also pass them. The Royals managed to salvage their last two games in their series with the Chicago White Sox, but still find themselves 5 games behind the Cleveland Indians for the division lead and are now a single game outside of the second and final Wild Card spot in the AL. The Royals desperately need to continue to pile up wins and their recent two game winning streak couldn't have come at a better time for the former World Series champions.

The Oakland A's have had a disastrous season this year and are firmly out of the playoff picture. That being said, this is a team that has been playing much better as of late, especially at home, and has seemed to fully embrace their role as 'spoilers' at this point in the season. That being said, they are still one of the bottom feeders in the league and a team like the Royals, who are looking to stay competitive in the playoff hunt, can ill-afford dropping games like this to such an opponent especially when they should have the edge on the mound tonight as Jake Junis pitches opposite Jahrel Cotton.

Jahrel Cotton has struggled this season, and comes into this contest with a 5-9 record and an inflated 5.72 ERA and 1.478 WHIP in 91 innings of work. Cotton saw his winless streak extend to four starts as he took the loss his last time out, which was Wednesday at home against the Mariners. He threw six innings, allowing six runs on eight hits with one walk and four strikeouts. His last three starts have been especially underwhelming as he is 0-1 with an 8.59 ERA and 1.84 WHIP, during that span. He has pitched well against the Royals in his career, thus far, however, given his recent performances and the motivation that the KC bats will bring into this contest, we believe that will change tonight.

The Royals will counter with rookie, Jake Junis. The right-hander is expected to be called up to make a spot start in place of the injured Trevor Cahill, who is on the DL. Junis picked up the win in his last time out, which was a start against the Mariners at home in the second game of a doubleheader last Sunday. In that outing, he threw eight innings, allowing one run on four hits with no walks and seven strikeouts in a 9-1 Royals victory. Over his last 3 starts, Junis is 1-1 with a 3.98 ERA and 1.08 WHIP, and 16 strikeouts over 20.1 innings.

The Royals recently managed to right the ship as they took down another bottom-feeding team in the Chicago White Sox. These are the type of series that the Royals need to continually win if they want to remain competitive in the playoff hunt. Oakland has played much better at home this season, but the Royals are the overall better team, and tonight we believe they will have the better pitcher on the mound. This game may be close, but Kansas City finds a way to win and extend their win streak to three.

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