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Guardians vs. Mariners. 4:10 ET
I went just 1-2 for the first time yesterday and now on the season am 5-4 with one +160 winner. It isn’t a huge start to the season, but I’m happy to have a game up on the record and have already sniffed out something that helps keep our units up. Now I have another one today in the last contest of the series between the Guardians and Mariners.
The Guardians are not a team that I like very much. I think they are inconsistent at best and I think they are going to struggle with hitting much of this season. Even the first two games of this season are a microcosm of what I’m talking about. In game one, they scored zero runs – in fairness, this was against Luis Castillo, a guy that I think can win the Cy Young – and then the second game they posted nine runs. This was against Robbie Ray, a former Cy Young, so it isn’t like he was some scrub. They will be hard to figure out on certain days. But what won’t be hard to figure out is the pitching staff. I fully expect their pitchers to be some of the best in the league and they will be the reason that the Guardians can compete for the division. Today they send Cal Quantrill to the mound, a guy that was very consistent last season. You know what you’ll get from Quantrill for the most part: five or six innings and a couple of earned runs allowed.
On the other side of the diamond, we are going to see the Mariners try to close out this first four-game set of the season with a victory. Marco Gonzales is the pitcher for them today. Gonzales wasn’t some sort of stud for them last year, but he did get the job done with a 3.58 home ERA which was about a half run lower than what he produced overall for the season. He faced Cleveland once last season and was able to go six strong innings allowing just four hits and one earned run. My biggest problem with Gonzales is that he is very hittable – he allowed 194 hits over 183 innings last season and added another 50 walks. That’s a lot of dudes on base and that creates trouble.
The Guardians might not be the best hitting team in baseball, but they are good enough contact hitters. If Gonzales is throwing strikes they have a good chance to make contact and should be patient enough if he isn’t throwing strikes. I like the Guardians to steal this one based on the simple fact that Quantrill is a better pitcher than Gonzales. I’ll take them at -105.
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