This is the spot in the White Sox rotation that has been occupied by Chris Sale so far this year. Since Robin Ventura made the decision to go with Sale at closer that opened up a spot for Dylan Axelrod. Rick Porcello counters for the Tigers and he has had a lot of success against the White Sox, including beating them once this year. He will make it 2 for 2 as the Tigers win this game and the series.
Rangers (Darvish) vs Indians (Jiminez)
The Texas Rangers got back in the win column yesterday and now send the hottest pitcher on the team to the mound in the finale against the Indians today. Darvish does have to lose sometime right? Cleveland does have some hitter that will make Darvish work, and I think that today will be the day and the Indians will win this game.
Diamondbacks (Cahill) vs Mets (Dickey)
The Mets stopped a 5-game losing streak yesterday and got back over .500 with a win over Arizona and now send R.A Dickey to the mound to keep that momentum going. Dickey has been fantastic at home at Citi Field so far in 2012, and that will continue today as the Mets win this game and take the series from Arizona.
Orioles (Hunter) vs Red Sox (Buchholz)
The Red Sox continue to falter and now are in peril of getting swept by the Orioles. Baltimore has been playing the best baseball in the American League after the Rangers and Rays, 2 teams which everyone expected. No one predicted Baltimore to be this good, but I am predicting Baltimore to win today. Better late than never right?
Reds (Latos) vs Pirates (Morton)
The Pittsburgh Pirates have scored 4 runs combined in the first 2 games of the series, and yet are 1-1 behind the pitching of James McDonald. They face Mat Latos today, a guy who is still struggling to find his way with his new team. I think that going against the Pirates will help Latos get back on track and Cincinnati will win today.
Athletics (Milone) vs Rays (Moore)
Both of these pitchers are facing the other team for the first time today. Matt Moore is a better pitcher than Tom Milone, and I still think one of the favorites to win the American League Rookie of the Year. The Tampa Bay offense is much better than the Oakland offense, and when you have the better pitcher and the better offense you usually win.
Cardinals (Wainwright) vs Astros (Happ)
Adam Wainwright has to be excited to pitch against the Astros. He has beaten them more than any other team, going 9-1 against them with an ERA of 1.56. He isn't the same pitcher he was a couple years ago but he is slowly rounding back into form, and an outing against Houston should help him out even further. Cardinals win and avoid the sweep.
Yankees (Hughes) vs Royals (Hochevar)
I am so happy Phil Hughes is still in the rotation. Makes it easy for me to pick against him. Royals win.
Dodgers (Harang) vs Cubs (Wood)
With Matt Garza battling a virus the Cubs called up Travis Wood to make his 2012 debut against Aaron Harang and the Dodgers. Wood pitched for Cincinnati the last 2 years and is now looking to make his mark with the Cubs. He hasn't had much success against the Dodgers and both Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier have hit well against him.
Braves (Beachy) vs Rockies (Nicasio)
Brandon Beachy has a 1.39 ERA currently and I can tell you with certainty that will go up today. Pitchers who come to Coors Field with a sterling ERA rarely leave with one better than what they started with. I still think the Braves will get the win, but I do not expect it to be a low-scoring affair because it rarely is in Colorado.
Blue Jays (Hutchison) vs Angels (Williams)
Chone Figgins is hitting for about the same average as Albert Pujols, but at least Figgins has a couple of home runs. Pujols still hasn't hit one this year. Anytime you are being compared to Chone Figgins when it comes to batting you have issues. I like the Blue Jays in this one and I think Albert Pujols will end the day with his average back over the Mendoza line but will not hit a home run.
Pick: Blue Jays
Marlins (Nolasco) vs Padres (Weiland)
Both of these teams enter Sundays game with questions about the bullpen. Houston Street was injured for San Diego and Heath Bell sucks for the Marlins. Both starting pitchers look to go deep in this game and help the bullpens out, and I think that Ricky Nolasco has a better shot to do that. The Marlins will win.
Brewers (Marcum) vs Giants (Cain)
Matt Cain is only 1-2?? I didn't know that. I guess the Giants are scoring too many runs for Madison Bumgarner and are not leaving Matt Cain with any support. Cain matches up against Shaun Marcum today and runs could be at a premium once again. I do think that Cain will get the win today as he will pitch a little bit better than Marcum.
Twins (Blackburn) vs Mariners (Noesi)
The Mariners gave the ball to their stopper yesterday and he definitely delivered. Now they look to keep the momentum going with Hector Noesi on the hill, going against Nick Blackburn of the Twins. Minnesota has been shut out in 3 of the last 4 games and while I don't think Noesi will get the shutout I do think he will get the win.
Phillies (Hamels) vs Nationals (Zimmermann)
Jordan Zimmermann vs Cole Hamels in Sunday Night Baseball today. Runs will be at a premium as these 2 pitchers are familiar with both lineups and both are damn good. I like the Nationals today because the Phillies offense is awful and the Nationals offense is a little bit better. Washington will win today and get further distance between them and the rest of the National League East.