Baseball Betting Predictions, Indians vs. Astros Lines

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Indians at Astros Picks

By Mike Rose

The seventh week of the 2018 baseball betting season closes out with a gem when Carlos Carrasco and the Cleveland Indians square off against Lance McCullers Jr. and the Houston Astros on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball. This series has recently been dominated by the Tribe who’ve taken each of the last five meetings as well as seven of the last 10 heading into Friday’s series opener. The under holds a negligible advantage cashing at a 5-4-1 clip.

Cleveland Indians at Houston Astros
Date and Time: Sunday, May 20, 2018, 8 p.m. ET
Location: Minute Maid Park, Houston, TX
MLB Odds: Check Back Later
Probable Pitchers: Carlos Carrasco vs. Lance McCullers Jr.
Indians at Astros TV Coverage: ESPN

Let’s face it folks, the AL Central stinks. It’s arguably the least competitive division in all of baseball with no team the owner of a +.500 record entering play on Thursday. That said, the Indians are the cream of the crop having split its first 42 games which has equated to an ugly $1100 deficit for baseball bettors.

Most bothersome is the team’s record away from Progressive Field where its managed only eight wins through 20 tries ( -$861 ). While the offense leads the league in home runs ( 64 ) and has amassed 28 quality starts ( No. 2 ), the bullpen ( No. 30 ) and defense ( #24 ) has left much to be desired. That in large part is why losing clubs like Minnesota and Detroit are hot on their trail for the division lead.

No other team has amasses more wins than the World Series favorite Houston Astros who stood 28-17 heading into Friday’s series opener. Unlike the Cubs last season, Jose Altuve and company haven’t experienced any sort of hangover after winning the franchise its first championship ever a short season ago.

While it sits 11 games over the breakeven point, it’s still cost those attacking the MLB betting lines $201 overall this season. That’s going to happen when you’re installed favorites by the oddsmakers in all but one of your 45 lined games. Though the squad has logged $581 in profit on the road, it’s cost those that backed them at home over $780 overall. Unsurprisingly, they’ll be installed chalk to win this matchup as well.

Player to Watch

Carlos Carrasco – The Tribe’s No. 2 hurler has thrived away from Progressive Field this season in pitching to a 3-1 record and 2.78 ERA. Though he’s 2-1 at home, his ERA is nearly 3.0 runs higher there. For some reason, he’s been more comfortable in hostile than accepting territory. On top of that, he’s excelled versus the Astros in his career pitching to a 3-1 record, 2.67 ERA and 0.98 WHIP. Houston is batting .218 against him lifetime. He’s made a pair of career starts at Minute Maid Park and won each by throwing shutout ball and only five hits through his 15.1 total innings of work. Each of his last four road starts have been of quality.
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Indians at Astros Picks

As much as I don’t want to get in front of the Houston Astros, they’ve been more susceptible to defeats at home. You seriously never know what you’re going to get whenever McCullers takes to the starting bump. He can give you seven shutout innings with 10 Ks, or he can depart before the fifth with an ugly stat line. His inconsistency has me leaning towards the Tribe in this spot with Carrasco leading the charge. He’s been unbeatable in this ball park, and been at his best on the road. Add Cleveland’s recent dominance of the rivalry into the equation, and there’s no way I can avoid backing the visitors at top-rated sportsbooks. Especially if receiving a plus-money return by linemakers!

MLB Pick: Bet the Indians at BookMaker.eu
MLB Score Prediction: Cleveland 6 – Houston 3

Indians vs Orioles Predictions, Baseball Betting Picks

Baseball Betting Picks

Indians at Orioles Picks

By Mike Rose

After earning a split with the AL Central leading Twins in Puerto Rico, the Cleveland Indians will look to gain some ground in Game 2 of their weekend set with the hapless Baltimore Orioles. The O’s have gotten out to a wretched start to their 2018 campaign managing just five wins through 19 overall tries. One has to wonder just how much hotter the seat can get under Buck Showalter before a change is in order.

Cleveland Indians at Baltimore Orioles
Date and Time: Saturday, April 21, 2018, 4:05 p.m. ET
Location: Camden Yards, Baltimore, MD
MLB Odds: Check Back Later
Probable Pitchers: Mike Clevinger vs. Chris Tillman
Indians at Orioles TV Coverage: FS1

The Tribe’s offense continues to flounder. That was eerily apparent in their 2-1 sixteen inning loss to the Twins on Wednesday that prevented them from surpassing Minnesota in the standings. Though the club enters this series averaging 5.0 runs over its last five games, it gets chopped down to just 3.5 runs over their last 10. None of Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez or Edwin Encarnacion is currently batting their weight.

Thankfully, Terry Francona has gotten a huge boost from his pitching staff. If not, the Tribe would no doubt be hanging out at the bottom of the league standings instead of second place. The staff ranks No. 2 in the quality starts department with 10, while the bullpen checks in at No. 6 with a 2.79 ERA. MLB bettors are still waiting for it to all fall into place.

If things have been bad in Cleveland and the Indians still sit a couple games over the breakeven point, words simply can’t describe what’s going on in Baltimore right now. Save for Manny Machado and to an extent Try Mancini, the Orioles are getting next to nothing from the offense right now. It’s scored three runs or less in six of its last 10 games and ranks No. 27 overall with a .223 batting average.

Unlike today’s opponent, the Orioles are also getting next to nothing from their pitching staff. Dylan Bundy and Andrew Cashner have been reliable, but it’s been nothing short of ugly after that. Baltimore ranks No. 26 in staff ERA ( 5.11 ), No. 29 in WHIP ( 1.57 ) and below league average in strikeouts. Add to the mix a bullpen ERA of 4.72 ( No. 23 ), and it’s clearly apparent the team is struggling in most facets of the game.

Key Stat

13 –Unlucky No. 13 is the amount of errors Baltimore’s defense has committed through its first 19 games. No Bueno! Along with failing to hit for an above average batting average and having next to nothing to rely upon on the bump, the O’s are also making their pitcher’s jobs that much harder by booting balls in the field. This only adds insult to injury for a team that’s only won back-to-back games once this season, and sports an embarrassing 2-4 record ( -$224 ) in front of the hometown faithful.

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Indians at Orioles Picks

The Tribe made a mockery of this AL rivalry a short season ago in winning six of the seven overall meetings. With Chris Tillman getting the starting nod in this one, Cleveland is going to be in an excellent position to improve upon that gaudy record. The O’s veteran has been peppered relentlessly each of the last two seasons. He enters this tilt 0-3 with a bloated 11.91 ERA and allowed at least 4 ER in his three made starts. Mike Clevinger hasn’t excelled like his fantasy owners would’ve liked, but at least he’s been reliable in allowing just 5 ER over 19.2 innings of work. I don’t foresee it getting any better for the home team in this matchup. Cleveland is by far the better of the two ball clubs, and I thoroughly expect them to show that throughout this series on the MLB betting lines at top online sportsbooks.

MLB Pick: Bet the Indians at BookMaker.eu
MLB Score Prediction: Cleveland 8 – Baltimore 3