April 11, 2011
For Amusement Only 4/11
We have a new feature For Amusement Only as the second full week of the season begins.
Thanks to a suggestion by reader "J.G.," we will begin ranking our picks in order of preference each day. The first choice will be the Pick of the Day and we'll track how those selections are doing over the course of the season.
For the very first Pick of the Day, based on the early odds, I'll go with the Rangers and Alexi Ogando+120 over the Tigers and Justin Verlander. I would not be surprised to see Verlander win the American League Cy Young Award this season but it's hard not to ride the red-hot Rangers, who have the best record in the major leagues at 8-1. Furthermore, Ogando was outstanding in his first career start last week as he shut out the Mariners for six innings. I'll go with the Rangers up to -130.
I'll take the Blue Jays and Jesse Litsch +145 over the Mariners and Felix Hernandez. I realize it seems foolhardy to pick against King Felix in three straight starts to begin the year but the Mariners are just plain lousy, and the Blue Jays should scratch out enough runs to win a tight game. The Blue Jays have also won six of their last eight games against the Mariners. I'll go with the Blue Jays up to -130.
The third and final pick is the Reds and Edinson Volquez +100 over the Padres and Mat Latos. Volquez hasn't pitched great this season, especially early in games, but I suspect Latos will be somewhat rusty in his first start of the season after being on the disabled list with a shoulder injury. I'll go with the Reds to up to -110.
Depending on line movement, I also like the Cubs and Ryan Dempster over the Astros and Nelson Figueroa at -125 or lower, and the Diamondbacks and Barry Enright over the Cardinals and Kyle McClellan at -115 or lower.
Sunday was a horrible day as the picks were2-5 for -345 units. The winners were the Indians +107 over the Mariners and the Red Sox +105 over the Yankees while the losers were the Mets -154 over the Nationals, the Pirates +114 over the Rockies, the Orioles -103 over the Rangers, the Cubs +170 over the Brewers and the Blue Jays +170 over the Angels.
Season record: 28-26 (.519)