Saturday, April 7, 2012

4-7 Predictions

Every team has now played at least one game and today all 30 teams are in action.  After posting a losing day yesterday I am looking to bounce back in a big way.  Prediction time!!

Time (ET)
Away Probable
Home Probable

Blue Jays vs Indians.

After playing the longest opening day game in Major League history the Blue Jays and Indians are back at it today.  Two pitchers with a lot of talent and a lot of inconsistency are on the mound for these respective teams today.  I think that Brandon Morrow's best years are ahead of him and I can't say that about Ubaldo Jiminez.  I'm going with the younger pitcher and the one who I think has more talent in Brandon Morrow.

Pick:  Blue Jays

Nationals (Gonzalez) vs Cubs (Garza)

Gio Gonzalez makes his Nationals debut against Matt Garza and the Cubs.  The Cubs were tough luck losers on Wednesday as the bullpen couldn't hold a one run lead for Ryan Dempster.  After switching leagues in 2011 Matt Garza struggled early before finishing strong and I expect something similar from Gio.  The bullpen will not let Garza down today as the Cubs win.

Pick: Cubs

Braves (Jurrjens) vs Mets (Dickey)

The Braves could not muster any offense against Johan Santana on Wednesday and now face knuckleballer R.A Dickey.  These two pitchers are exact opposites with Jurrjens getting fast starts and fading down the stretch and Dickey starting poorly and gaining steam at the end of the season.  Since this is the first start for the two I am going say the trend continues.

Pick: Braves

Red Sox (Beckett) vs Tigers (Fister)

These pitchers had similar ERA's last year and yet the 2011 season couldn't have been different for them.  Fister was traded from a team with no offense to a team with an abundance of it and thrived, going 8-1 with a 1.79 after he got traded.  Beckett meanwhile gave up 13 runs in 12 innings in his last 2 starts during that epic Boston Collapse.  Boston has gotten off to slow starts in both 2010 and 2011 and I think they continue the run of slow starts.

Pick: Tigers

Royals (Hochevar) vs Angels (Haren)

Even though Albert Pujols went hitless in his debut yesterday the Angels still won behind the strength of their starting pitching.  I think that I will be talking a lot this year about the strength of the starting pitching in Anaheim and it doesn't get any easier for the Royals as they are now facing Dan Haren.  They are countering with former #1 pick Luke Hochevar but I think the Angels win this one.

Pick: Angels

Giants (Bumgarner) vs Diamondbacks (Hudson)

Dating back to last season the Arizona Diamondbacks have now won 7 straight games against the San Francisco Giants.  The Giants are hoping 2010 World Series hero Madison Bumgarner can end that streak as he takes the mound today.  The Diamondbacks are countering with Daniel Hudson.  Both of these pitchers are young and talented.  The Diamondbacks offense is more talented than the Giants and since I think the pitchers are a wash I'm going with the offense here.

Pick: Diamondbacks

Cardinals (Wainwright) vs Brewers (Greinke)

This has the potential to be a dynamite pitching matchup with two of the best right handers in the National League going at it.  The problem is since Wainwright didn't pitch at all in 2011 you don't know how much he will have in the tank in his first start.  Greinke is also in a contract year after not getting a deal done in the spring and he will be anxious to prove he is worth Matt Cain money.  I am 0-2 in picking against the Cardinals and I am going to do it again.

Pick: Brewers

Rockies (Moyer) vs Astros (Harrell)

Jamie Moyer made the starting rotation for the Colorado Rockies at the age of 49.  To put this in perspective he was already attending spring training with the Chicago Cubs when the man he is facing, Lucas Harrell, was born!  Jamie Moyer could become the oldest pitcher in Major League history to earn a win today  and I think he will get it.  

Pick: Rockies

Twins (Liriano) vs Orioles (Hunter)

Francisco Liriano had an inconsistent 2011 for the Twins, throwing a no hitter but also only going 9-10 with an ERA over 5.  Is main issue last year was he couldn't find the strike zone and was often trying to pitch out of jams.  Tommy Hunter came over from the Rangers last year and went 3-3 and also had an ERA over 5.  Even though neither offense is that good I still expect a few runs to be scored today.

Pick: Twins

Phillies (Lee) vs Pirates (Karstens)

Cliff Lee now tries to follow Roy Halladay's masterful performance on Thursday as the Phillies look to go to 2-0.  The Pirates counter with Jeff Karstens who actually led the staff with a 3.38 ERA last year.  Even though the Phillies are without Utley and Howard I think they have enough offense to win this game.  In fact I am going to make this game the lock of the day.

Pick: Phillies.  This game is my lock of the day.

Marlins (Nolasco) vs Reds (Latos)

Mat Latos makes his Cincinnati Reds debut against the team that could not hit their way out of a wet paper bag the first two games of the season.  While I think Latos will have some struggles going from the friendly pitching confines of Petco Park to a park that is designed more for hitters, you can't help but notice how bad this Marlin offense has been after two games.  I think it gets a little better today but it still won't be enough as the Reds win.

Pick: Reds

Yankees (Kuroda) vs Rays (Price)

Hiroki Kuroda was the biggest free agent signing the Yankees made this year.  They chose to keep their aging offense together one more year and to revamp the starting rotation.  David Price was the all-star starter for the American League in 2011 and he looks to keep building on an already impressive start to his career.  Price is 4-2 against the Yankees in his young career and I think he gets win number 5 today.

Pick: Rays

White Sox (Peavy) vs Rangers (Holland)

I think everyone who reads this blog should pick a date that they think Jake Peavy will get injured..  Unfortunately with Peavy and it is not a matter of if but a matter of when.  Derek Holland came out of nowhere in 2011 to win 16 games for the Rangers and with C.J Wilson gone needs to take more of a leadership role.  Both pitchers have struggled against the teams they are facing so expect a lot of fireworks in this game today.  

Pick: Rangers

Dodgers (Capuano) vs Padres (Moseley)

After two games the Padres almost have more errors (5) than hits (8).  I knew it was going to be a long year in San Diego but I figured defense would be one of the bright spots for this team. The Padres have history on their side today as the Dodgers haven't started 3-0 in 13 years and the Padres haven't started 0-3 in 9 years. Plus I just don't trust Chris Capuano.

Pick: Padres

Mariners (Hernandez) vs Athletics (Colon)

Bartolo Colon has a chance to be the first 2-game winner in the Major Leagues if he can beat the Mariners today.  That won't happen as Felix is on the mound for the Mariners.  Even though Felix is sitting at 90 mph with his fastball as opposed to 93 he still shut Oakland down for 8 innings in Japan last week.  Add that to the fact that the Mariners are 8-1 the last 9 times that Felix has faced Oakland and I think the Mariners take this one.

Pick: Mariners

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