Free picks on the battle for the East. The Cardinals are looking to squash out the Nationals in the NLDS and the Yankees would like to put an end to the Orioles first playoff appearance since 1997 in the ALDS.
MLB Picks of the Day
St. Louis Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals
The Cardinals need to return the favor in the nation's
capital after losing one of two at Busch to start off the series. They have an
excellent chance at doing so in the eyes of oddsmakers, who have listed the
Nationals as only -110 favorites. St. Louis is listed at +106 to win and go up
Perhaps the betting odds are so close because of Chris Carpenter's
immense playoff experience.
Carpenter has started 15 postseason games in his career and
has gone 9-2 with a 3.05 ERA. In six NLDS appearances he's gone 4-1 with a 2.72
Though Carp joined the rotation late on in the regular
season, he should be in a pretty good rhythm by now. It helps that he's been
money against the Nationals in his career, having gone 6-1 with a 3.39 ERA in
12 career starts against them.
The Nationals will have Edwin Jackson on the mound, a
right-hander who actually played for St. Louis last year. Jackson's had four
starts and seven overall appearances in the postseason before, posting a 1-1
win-loss record and a poor 4.91 ERA.
Jackson has also been killed by the Cardinals this season.
In two starts against them he had a 7.71 ERA, allowing ten hits and eight runs
in 9 and 1/3 innings of work. Additionally, Jackson closed out the regular
season with his worst month of the season by far. In five September starts he
went 1-2 with a 7.92 ERA and batters hit .317 against him.
A win for St. Louis today would really make things
interesting. The Cardinals do own the pitching advantage in my opinion and
that's a good reason to back them with your MLB picks.
MLB Pick: St. Louis Cardinals +106
Baltimore Orioles vs. New York Yankees
What a duel we have on our hands here as Hiroki Kuroda tries
to out-pitch the ever-surprising Miguel Gonzalez in Game 3.
The Yankees did well to win a game in Baltimore and will now
try to close out the series in Yankee Stadium. They'll start with Kuroda
tonight, with Phil Hughes going in Game 4 and then C.C. Sabathia if a Game 5 is
But back to Kuroda
The man has been pitching filthy all season and there's no
reason to expect anything different in this MLB affair. Kuroda went 11-6 with a
2.72 ERA at home this season, recording 101 strikeouts and 28 walks while
holding opposing hitters to a .219 overall batting average.
The Japanese righty has been hitting his spots on a
consistent basis and did so against the Orioles in two meetings against them
this year. He went 1-1 with a 2.93 ERA in the two assignments.
Now, Gonzalez has been money for Baltimore this season too,
but he's never pitched in the postseason before and it remains to be seen how
he's able to handle that kind of additional pressure. He could very well shine,
but it's going to take one hell of a performance to stifle the Yankees in this
Simply put, New York cannot afford to lose tonight. A shaky
Phil Hughes awaits in Game 4 and that's definitely not who you want to put your
faith in when your playoff lives are on the line. Kuroda has been a stud for
Joe Girardi and I'm banking on him rising to the occasion.
It seems the Yankees have been getting a lot of clutch hits
lately, even from unlikely sources. That has been truer at home in the Bronx
and so I think that crowd will help spur on New York to a Game 3 wins tonight and I'll add them to my baseball picks for Wednesday.
MLB Pick: New York Yankees -162