This is the first sports weekend in many months where there is no NBA or NHL betting action. We are in the dog days of summer, folks! That means plenty of baseball betting and here are my top three picks for the weekend against the projected spread. Find the latest MLB odds here.
ATS MLB Betting Picks for the Coming Weekend
Chicago Cubs at Miami Marlins, Sunday: This will feature live betting as it’s televised nationally by the MLB Network. The Cubs will be rare underdogs and I’d have to bet against them because the Marlins start ace Jose Fernandez, who almost never loses at home. Fernandez (9-3, 2.36) allowed just one hit and two walks over seven shutout innings with seven strikeouts but took a no-decision in Tuesday’s game against Atlanta. He now has an absurd 125 strikeouts in just 87.2 innings, and his 12.8 K/9 is a full strikeout better than the next best qualified pitcher, Stephen Strasburg (11.4 K/9). Fernandez’s record at Marlins Park is an amazing 23-1 with a 1.48 ERA. He has never faced the Cubs. Chicago goes with Jason Hammel (7-3, 2.55). Hammel pitched 5.2 innings, allowing four runs, six hits and a walk while striking out three in Tuesday’s loss to the Cardinals. Entering the game, Hammel was 2-0 with a 1.35 ERA over 13.1 innings against the Cardinals in 2016. He is 2-4 with a 4.09 ERA in 10 career games against the Marlins. I not only like the Marlins here but love the under total, which likely will be 7.
Washington Nationals at Milwaukee Brewers, Sunday: We were supposed to be treated to an epic pitching matchup between Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg and Dodgers three-time Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw on Monday, but Strasburg was scratched with an upper-back strain. Strasburg pitched just 127 innings last season due to various injuries but had been healthy this year. But he’s apparently fine and will start Sunday’s series finale in Milwaukee. Strasburg is 10-0 over his first 14 starts of the season with a 2.90 ERA, slightly under his career mark of 3.07. The Brewers counter with their best pitcher, Jimmy Nelson (5-6, 3.80). Nelson tossed five frames, allowing just one run on six hits while walking one and striking out two in a no-decision versus the A’s on Tuesday. Nelson had a chance to win his first game in nearly a month, but the bullpen immediately lost Nelson’s one-run lead. Nelson has done his best work this season at Miller Park, where he owns a 2.62 ERA, a .238 opponents’ average and a ratio of 2.44 strikeouts per walk. Go Nationals here if Strasburg starts and they will be favorites. Also go under the total.
Toronto Blue Jays at Chicago White Sox, Sunday: It’s the AL Cy Young favorite on betting lines in Chicago’s Chris Sale here. Sale (12-2, 2.83) gave up just one run on four hits and a walk and struck out nine over seven innings in a win Tuesday over the Red Sox. Sale, the first pitcher in MLB to 12 wins, had struggled over his past five starts, in which he allowed 20 runs in 29.2 innings (6.07 ERA). Sale dominated the Blue Jays in Toronto on April 26, allowing one run and four hits over eight innings in a victory. It’s Marcus Stroman for Toronto. Stroman (6-3, 5.23) got chased early in last Sunday’s loss to the Orioles, allowing seven runs on 10 hits in 3.2 innings. He struck out four. Stroman is 1-2 with a 7.89 ERA in June. He has allowed six or more runs in four of his last seven starts. Go White Sox here and over the total.