The NBA Finals might end on Friday night and even if it didn’t, there’s no Game 5 until Monday. The NHL’s Stanley Cup Finals don’t play Game 6 until Sunday. So it’s a good weekend to focus on building your baseball bankroll, and here are three MLB betting picks for Sunday I am confident about.
The Rays will be favorites behind ace Chris Archer – both teams may need their starting pitchers to go deep into the game because the clubs play a doubleheader on Saturday and thus will surely use plenty of relievers. It’s the first scheduled doubleheader, i.e. not from a makeup game, since 2011. Archer (4-4, 3.65) Archer allowed two runs on five hits with no walks across seven innings in Tuesday’s loss to the White Sox. He struck out 11. Archer tied a franchise record with his 23rd career double-digit strikeout game — tying him with David Price. Of Archer’s 11 strikeouts, nine came using his slider. No starter in the Major Leagues has struck out more batters using the slider, with Archer picking up his 78th punchout on the pitch Tuesday. He went without a walk for the second time this season and reached double-digit strikeouts for the third time in his last four starts to push his K:BB to an outstanding 41:5 during that span. It’s Jesse Hahn (2-4, 3.40) for Oakland. In his first start back from the disabled list (right triceps strain) on Tuesday, Hahn earned the win over Toronto, allowing one run in six innings. He gave up seven hits, but only walked one and got two double plays. He struck out two. Hahn is winless on the road so go Rays.
Milwaukee Brewers at Arizona Diamondbacks
The Snakes will be MLB favorites behind one of the hottest pitchers in MLB, lefty Robbie Ray (6-3, 2.85). Ray held the Padres to a single run on three hits and two walks while striking out a season-high 11 over 6.2 innings in Tuesday’s 10-2 win. That he gave up a run made that this Ray’s worst start in his last four, as he gave up exactly zero runs on eight hits in his prior three outings combined. Ray won his fourth straight start but had his scoreless innings streak snapped at 27⅔. The only other pitcher in Diamondbacks history to win four straight starts while allowing no more than one run was Brandon Webb, during his 42-inning scoreless streak in 2007. Milwaukee goes with Chase Anderson (5-1, 2.94). He fired 7.2 scoreless frames against the Giants on Tuesday evening, allowing six hits and a walk while striking out four. It marked Anderson’s third straight scoreless outing of at least seven innings, joining only three other Brewers pitchers who can claim the same, per Baseball Reference. Only Cal Eldred in 1992, Teddy Higuera in 1987 and Moose Haas in 1983 have equaled his achievement. I would parlay the Diamondbacks and under the total here
Detroit Tigers at Boston Red Sox
This is the ESPN Sunday night game and a matchup of lefties. Detroit’s Daniel Norris lost after allowing four runs (three earned) on five hits (two homers) and three walks with seven strikeouts in six innings Tuesday vs. the Angels. Norris (2-4, 4.48 ERA) completed six innings for just the second time in his past six starts, needing 110 pitches (68 strikes) to do so. He worked around a solo homer in the first and a two-run shot in the fourth before giving up an unearned run in the fifth. Though his 8.2 K/9 is strong, the 24-year- old has struggled to limit baserunners this season, allowing 10.1 H/9 and 4.0 BB/9. Norris will be opposed by Drew Pomeranz (6-3, 4.02). He allowed two runs (one earned) on six hits and two walks across five innings during Tuesday’s win over the Yankees. Pomeranz yielded an unearned run on a throwing error by Mookie Betts in the second inning and was only scored upon again on a solo home run by Chris Carter in the fifth. He labored at times, throwing a season-high 123 pitches as he struggled to put away hitters, which caused his removal after just five frames. Over his past four outings, Pomeranz has a 2.04 ERA, an impressive 32:5 K:BB and a 3-0 record over 22 innings.