Detroit at Tampa Bay Pro Baseball Betting Pick & Game Info

Posted by Kenny Bell on Wednesday,April 19, 2017 9:19, EDT in

It’s the series finale for Detroit in Tampa Bay on Thursday afternoon, meaning that terrible Tropicana Field, the worst stadium in the majors, will probably be 85 percent empty and the few fans that are there likely backing the Tigers – whose spring training is right down the road in Lakeland. The Tigers will be baseball betting favorites.

Detroit at Tampa Bay Pro Baseball Betting Pick & Game Info

When: Thursday, April 20, 1:10 PM ET
Where: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg
Probable pitchers (away/home): Daniel Norris/Erasmo Ramirez
TV: MLB Extra Innings
Stream: MLB.tv
RadioDetroit / Tampa Bay
Opening MLB Lines: Tigers favored by TBA

Why Bet On Detroit?

Excellent outfielder J.D. Martinez (foot) hasn’t been cleared to run or participate in outfield drills. Martinez is expected to join the team this week in Tampa, though only to take batting practice and sit in the dugout during the club’s series against the Rays. Tigers general manager Al Avila said late last week that Martinez was closing in on a minor league rehab assignment, but it’s unclear when he’ll be ready. Coming back from a Lisfranc sprain in his right foot, Martinez will likely be eased into action as the DH before playing the field. He could join the Tigers by late April or early May.

The Tigers say they aren’t concerned about ace Justin Verlander and that it’s possible Verlander was tipping his pitches Saturday. Verlander gave up a career-high nine runs — including three homers — over four innings on Saturday. Ausmus joined Verlander in a video session Sunday morning to look for some answers.

Hitters are always trying to find an edge on pitchers, and looking for pitchers tipping is standard operating procedure," Ausmus said. “I can’t tell you whether it is [an issue] or isn’t. Only the Indians could tell you that, and they probably won’t.”

The Tigers go with young lefty Daniel Norris (1-0, 2.19) here. Norris earned his first victory of the season on Friday, firing six shutout innings against the Cleveland Indians. Norris struck out five batters and allowed two hits and four walks during his time on the hill. He needed 101 pitches to get through six innings, but other than some command issues it was an outstanding start for Norris against a tough Indians lineup.

Norris has now allowed three runs or less in 21 consecutive starts – the longest active streak in baseball. He’s also not been beaten in 16 straight road starts – fourth longest streak in Major League Baseball history. Norris faces the Rays for the first time since April 25, 2015, when he was in the Jays rotation. He tossed seven innings of one-run ball with seven strikeouts that evening for his first Major League quality start.

Why Bet On Tampa Bay?

Projected Rays starting shortstop Matt Duffy (heel) ran and took fielding practice on Tuesday. He told reporters after the workout that it’s the best he’s felt since his Achilles surgery last September. Duffy is aiming to return to the Rays’ active roster sometime in May. He was acquired last summer from the Giants in the Matt Moore deal.

Tampa has placed No. 2 starter Jake Odorizzi on the 10-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. Odorizzi took a comebacker off his leg in a start against Toronto last week and aggravated the injury Saturday against the Red Sox. Rays starting pitchers have crafted a 3.48 ERA, tied for 9th in the majors and the lowest among AL East rotations.

LF/DH Corey Dickerson leads the Rays and ranks among the AL’s top 10 in a number of offensive categories: batting avg. (.340, 9th), home runs (3, T-10th), RBI (10, T-9th), doubles (5, T-2nd), extra-base hits (8, T-3rd), hits (17, T-5th), multi-hit games (6, T-4th), total bases (31, T-5th) and SLG (.620, 9th). The left-handed hitter is also batting .500 (7-for- 14) against left-handed pitching, tied with TOR Devon Travis and CWS Avisail Garcia for the AL lead.

Here, the Rays go with Erasmo Ramirez (1-0, 3.72). Ramirez will be making his first start of the season in place of the injured Odorizzi. He pitched a strong four innings after Odorizzi suffered left hamstring tightness Saturday in Boston, allowing one run in four innings.

Detroit at Tampa Bay MLB Pick: Detroit Tigers

Clearly you can’t bet against Norris right now with that streak going.