MLB Opening Day Expert Preview and Picks
Not, not two, not…oh….damn, there I go getting carried away again with my LeBron James jokes. All attempts at humor aside, if you’re an pro baseball betting aficionado or fan that is looking forward to Opening Day, then you’ve come to the right place! Thanks to the bettor-friendly management at mybookie.ag and this expert trio of Opening Day MLB picks, you’re going to have a great opportunity to cash in not once or even twice, but a whopping three times. With all of that said, let’s get started.
— Baseball Tonight (@BBTN) March 31, 2016
MLB Opening Day Expert Picks
Washington at Atlanta
When: Monday, April 04 – 4:10 PM EST
Where: Turner Field, Atlanta, Georgia
Veteran right-hander Max Scherzer (14-12, 2.79 ERA) will make his second straight opening day start for Washington while young Atlanta righty Julio Teheran (11-8, 4.04 ERA) will make his third consecutive opening day starts for the Braves. Despite the fact that Teheran is as athletically gifted as any young pitcher in the game today, the Atlanta Braves will have almost no chance of winning this contest against a Nationals ballclub that is looking for bigger and better things after falling well short of their standing as last season’s preseason World Series favorite for most baseball experts.
Max Scherzer posted a solid ERA last season, but didn’t get the 20-win season that was expected out of a staff ace, so expect him to bring his ‘A’ game in this one. More importantly, the Nationals made a great hire by adding widely-respected baseball lifer Dusty Baker to get rid of the dysfunction that existed last season under former manager Matt Williams. “He’s great with young players, he’s good with veterans,” said retired outfielder Doug Glanville, the ESPN analyst who played for Baker with the Chicago Cubs. “I’m very curious to see how everything evolves with him in D.C. with personalities like Harper, young guys who are kind of new-school … and meshing that with the team that’s got a lot of talent.”
Washington wins by at least two runs and Bryce Harper picks up right where he left off last season.
The Pick: Washington 4 Atlanta 2
L.A. Dodgers at San Diego Padres
When: Monday, April 04 – 7:05 PM EST
Where: Petco Park, San Diego, California
Cy Young winning left-hander Clayton Kershaw (17-8, 2.16 ERA) gets the call for the Dodgers while right-hander Tyson Ross (10-12, 3.31 ERA) will take the mound for San Diego in this NL West divisional battle. Despite underachieving a bit en route to their 92-70 record last season, the Dodgers are the easy pick in this contest with their staff ace on the mound. L.A. was the better offensive and defensive ballclub last season and while they lost some key pieces this offseason, they’re still a lot better than the rebuilding Padres (74-88).
The Padres lost each of Ross’ last three starts a year ago while giving up at least four runs in each contest while L.A. won two of Kershaw’s final three starts a year ago while not giving up more than three runs in any outing. The Dodgers may not be as good as they were last season, but they get the road win against the perennially-rebuilding Padres in this opener.
The Pick: Dodgers 5 Padres 3
Chicago Cubs at L.A. Angels
When: Monday, April 04 – 10:05 PM EST
Where: Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California
Reigning NL Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta will get the call for the Chicago Cubs while right-hander Garrett Richards takes the mound for the Angels in this intriguing matchup. While Richards (15-12, 3.65 ERA) had a solid season for the Halos in 2015, it didn’t compare to Arrieta’s (24-7, 1.92 ERA) historic campaign. The Cubs are this season’s preseason World Series favorites and for good reason. They’re absolutely loaded.
I know the Angels have the best position player in all of baseball in all-star centerfielder Mike Trout and a still, solid hitter in Albert Pujols, but the Angels lack pitching in a big way and that doesn’t bode well heading into a series against a Cubs lineup that looks like it could be the best in baseball this season.
The Cubs added elite outfielder Jason Heyward and veteran utility infielder Ben Zobrist to a batting order that already included gifted young stars like Kris Bryant (26 HR, 99 RBI), Anthony Rizzo (31 HR, 101 RBI) Kyle Schwarber.
The Angels have a totally mediocre pitching staff and will pay for it in this contest after each team’s starter departs. A precursor to this contest comes in the form of a Heyward home run that he hit against the Halos on Monday – after suffering 20 bee stings prior to the preseason tilt. Jake Arrieta leads Chicago to the solid road win.
The Pick: Cubs 4 Angels 2