We haven’t had a manager fired yet this season but it might be coming for the Mets’ Mickey Callaway after his club was embarrassingly swept over the weekend by the awful Marlins. New York is just 4-10 since May 3. Here are two intriguing MLB matchups early this week, including one involving those Mets. Check back for MLB odds.
Top MLB Betting Picks of the Week – May 20th Edition
A satisfying Sunday. pic.twitter.com/E4fXn3YPHU— MLB (@MLB) 20 de mayo de 2019
Kansas City Royals at St. Louis Cardinals
- When: Tuesday, 8:15 PM ET (MLB Extra Innings)
The Royals will lose the designated hitter for this Show-Me State interleague series. If you have been betting on Kansas City pitcher Jorge Lopez in all nine of his starts this year, well, shame on you. If you had wagered $100 on the Royals to win in each Lopez start, you would be down about $700. He is responsible for more money lost than any pitcher but teammate Trevor Richards.
Lopez (0-5, 6.29) might be pulled from the rotation after Tuesday if he struggles again. He took the loss last Wednesday as the Royals fell 6-1 to the Rangers, giving up five runs on seven hits and two walks over 5.2 innings while striking out seven. A two-run shot by the recently promoted Willie Calhoun in the first inning put Lopez in an early hole, and Kansas City’s offense was never able to climb out of it. Lopez had just one clean frame and allowed the leadoff batter to reach in three of six innings, but held Texas to just three at-bats with runners in scoring position.
Both homers by Texas were hit by left-handed batters, who have accounted for eight of the 12 HR he’s allowed through nine starts. Left-handed batters are hitting .322 (29-for-90) this season, but right-handed batters are hitting just .243 (25-for-103).
The right-hander has been taken deep 12 times in only 48.2 innings so far in 2019, leading to that awful 6.29 ERA despite a relatively solid 46:19 K:BB. After posting a 3.71 ERA (7 ER in 17 IP) through three starts, Lopez has allowed at least four runs in each of his last six, in which he has a 7.67 ERA (27 ER in 31.2 IP).
The Cardinals’ Michael Wacha (3-1, 4.93) took the loss last Wednesday, giving up two runs (one earned) on four hits and four walks over five innings while striking out four in a 4-0 loss to Atlanta. The right-hander threw only 51 of 90 pitches for strikes and generated only five swinging strikes, but Wacha was able to escape without too much damage. The unearned run was the result of his own error.
With four walks allowed Wednesday, Wacha’s BB/9 rate this season has ballooned to 5.6, significantly higher than any other season of his career. Command issues have coincided with a noticeable dip in Wacha’s fastball velocity this season.
Washington Nationals at NY Mets
- When: Wednesday, 7:10 PM ET (MLB Extra Innings)
It looks to be the top pitching matchup of the week between the guys who have combined for the past three NL Cy Young Awards – although neither has Cy Young numbers yet this season.
It’s Max Scherzer for Washington, and he has won the Cy Young three times – once with the Tigers in the AL and then twice for the Nationals. Scherzer (2-5, 3.72) has been rather inconsistent this year and that was the case Friday when he surrendered three runs on six hits and four walks while striking out eight over six innings in a loss to the Cubs.
Scherzer gave up three runs in the first two innings but managed to settle down and blanked Chicago in his last four frames. Scherzer hasn’t gotten much run support as he has registered quality starts in seven of his 10 outings and sports a very nice 87:14 K:BB ratio over 65.1 frames.
The Nationals have lost eight of Scherzer’s 10 starts this season, including a 2-0 setback in his matchup with Jacob deGrom on Opening Day. Scherzer struck out 12 in 7 2/3 innings but was bested by deGrom’s six scoreless with 10 K’s.
The Mets’ deGrom was historically good last year in winning the Cy Young. Not quite as good this year with a 3-5 record and 3.98 ERA. DeGrom allowed seven runs (six earned) last Friday vs. the Marlins, the most runs he has given up in a start since September 2017. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner has been frustrated with his inconsistency, particularly his pitch location.
Expert MLB Betting Picks
Back Cardinals and Nationals.