Home Run Title Odds Because Chicks Dig the Long Ball Right?




    Stanton enters as the favorite to win the home run title but I have some concerns.

    It’s not like the days when Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa were dueling through the season (with help of course) but at the very least it was entertaining right? There’s no shortage of home run hitters in the game today but who will come out on top? Let’s find out.

    2015 Regular Season – Who will hit the most HR’s?         

    Giancarlo Stanton            7/1

    Stanton enters as the favorite after belting 37 home runs in 2014. I have two concerns with him; he took a fastball to the face last season and signed a new deal worth $325 million. Will the pressure be too much?

    Edwin Encarnacion          10/1

    Jose Abreu                         10/1

    Chris Carter                        12/1

    Mike Trout                          12/1

    Chris Carter probably had the quietest 37 home run season in the history of the league playing in Houston. The other three guys are known commodities who could easily lead the league in this department. I wouldn’t blame you a bit if you laid money on them.

    Jose Bautista                     14/1

    Anthony Rizzo                   14/1

    Chris Davis                          16/1

    Miguel Cabrera                 16/1

    Bautista is a tough call because he’ll be in the same line-up as Encarnacion. Rizzo could be a nice pick as could Cabrera who’s looking for a bounce-back year. Davis faces the most pressure of the bunch because of his down season following his PED admission.

    Paul Goldschmidt            25/1

    George Springer               25/1

    Josh Donaldson                25/1

    Kris Bryant                          25/1

    Evan Gattis                         25/1



    Kris Bryant would be a bigger pick if he were going to start the season up in the bigs.

    Springer hit just 20 homers last season but figures to benefit from Chris Carter. Donaldson is the third Blue Jay already spoken about and you have to wonder if they don’t cancel each other out. Bryant led the minors in home runs last year but the Cubs are already saying he’s starting the season there so forget him.

    Mark Trumbo                     33/1

    Prince Fielder                   33/1

    Nelson Cruz                       33/1

    David Ortiz                         33/1

    I have to wonder when Ortiz finally slows down. He showed some rust last season but can he re-group for one final run at a home run title? Cruz is a guy I like having hit 40 bombs last season and now he gets some guys around him in the lineup in Seattle.

    Troy Tulowitzki                 40/1

    Bryce Harper                      40/1

    Tulowitzki has the advantage of playing in the thin air of Colorado. Harper has the advantage of youth and a great lineup around him.

    Ryan Braun                         50/1

    Adam Jones                       50/1

    Carlos Gonzalez                50/1

    Jay Bruce                             50/1

    Pedro Alvarez                   50/1

    I’ll be really honest here; I don’t like any of these guys. All are capable but I just don’t think things set up well for them.

    Yoenis Cespedes             66/1

    Albert Pujols                     66/1

    Brandon Moss                   66/1

    Matt Kemp                         66/1

    Kemp has some new surroundings which could help but the guy in this group I really like is Cespedes who will have lots of lineup protection in Detroit with Cabrera and Victor Martinez around him.

    Adam LaRoche                  100/1

    Lucas Duda                         100/1

    Andrew McCutchen        100/1

    Justin Upton                      100/1

    Now we really start getting into the long-shots and I don’t like any of these guys to lead the league in homers.

    Todd Frazier                       150/1

    Carlos Santana                  150/1

    Ryan Howard                     150/1

    I thought Carlos Santana was a guitar player? Forget it. None of these guys will reach the top.

    Best Bets?

    I think you have to keep an eye on Cespedes but the ballpark in Detroit is a concern. Stanton is a very likeable and understandable pick but I have concerns. The guy I like? Chris Carter. He just looks like a home run hitter.


    2015 National League Pennant Odds


    Bryce Harper and the Nationals are favorites to win the 2015 NL Pennant.

    Washington Nationals 13/4 – The addition of Max Scherzer rocketed the Nationals to the top contenders in the National League and rightfully so. He will eat innings which will help the bullpen. The offense is solid, but not spectacular in my opinion but I do like skipper Matt Williams a lot because he knows how to generate some runs.

    Los Angeles Dodgers 19/4 – Brandon McCarthy makes the starting rotation deeper but did the bullpen and offense get any better? I think the Dodgers challenge but any dropoff could result in Don Mattingly going bye-bye.

    Chicago Cubs 6/1 – Joe Maddon instantly adds wins to this team and adding some more talent to the already talented youth doesn’t hurt either. Can they live up to higher expectations? Time will tell.

    San Diego Padres 13/2 – The addition of James Shields will give the pitching staff a much needed boost and the offense will be better as well. The problem is the division where the Giants and Dodgers aren’t going to go away anytime soon.

    St. Louis Cardinals 13/2 – Although some extra pitching would have been nice in the offseason, the Cardinals did add Jason Heyward to the outfield and the line-up. I see no reason why the Cards aren’t right where they usually are in the end.


    Madison Bumgarner will need a repeat performance if the Giants are to repeat as the champs.

    San Francisco Giants 17/2 – The defending champs aren’t fond of odd-numbered years and their pitching staff, outside of Madison Bumgarner is a little questionable. Plus, who replaces Pablo Sandoval?

    New York Mets 14/1 – Michael Cuddyer comes over from Colorado so while we can expect his numbers to drop a bit he is still a solid upgrade. There are capable players on this team so if the pitching can come through the Mets could be a challenge in the East.

    Pittsburgh Pirates 14/1 – The Battling Buccos have to replace Russell Martin behind the dish and that won’t be easy. He was a great leader and was well-liked by the fans. A.J. Burnett returns to the rotation but will they get enough out of the starters this year?

    Miami Marlins 16/1 – This team will have a very exciting outfield which should put butts in seats. The questions will be mostly about pitching and whether the Marlins will have enough of it to stay with the Nationals.

    Cincinnati Reds 28/1 – After competing in recent years the Reds will take a significant step back. They lack any real depth and should they stay healthy could be a factor but they dumped too many guys to consider them.

    Atlanta Braves 33/1 – The Braves unloaded a lot of players recently and seem to be throwing in the towel for this season and maybe next year as well.

    Milwaukee Brewers 33/1 – The Brewmasters started so hot last season but then the roof collapsed and they were caught by St. Louis and Pittsburgh. I don’t see any type of start this year resembling what they did in 2014.

    Arizona Diamondbacks 50/1 – This team is destined for the basement in the National League West unless they can best the Rockies which is debatable. The Padres got better and there’s no way they are in the same league as the Dodgers and Giants.

    Colorado Rockies 75/1 – The Rockies have very little pitching and the offense is going to rely too heavily on just a couple of guys for them to be taken seriously in 2015.

    Philadelphia Phillies 75/1 – It’s a fantastic baseball city that probably deserves better but I don’t see much hope in sight. This is going to be another long year especially in a division with three top, improved teams.

    Who I like… As much as I hate going with the favorite, I think Washington gets over the hump behind a monster pitching staff and wins the pennant.

    The Casino Review sportsbook blog provides news and analysis on the online sports betting industry, helping experienced and recreational bettors get the most out of their online betting experience.

    Odds to Win the 2015 American League Pennant


    Masahiro Tanaka's health will be of extreme importance if the Yankees are to be in the running for the AL Pennant.

    Boston Red Sox 11/2 – Pablo Sandoval may have shown up to Spring Training looking like Barney from “The Simpsons” but he is still being relied upon to deliver after the BoSox acquired this offseason. Offensively I think Boston will be fine. I am a tad concerned about the lack of a stud leading the rotation but this should be a good team in 2015.

    Los Angeles Angles 6/1 – The Angels racked up 98 wins last season and the team appears to be largely the same. Even with Josh Hamilton’s pending suspension, LAA should be right there in the mix for the pennant.

    Chicago White Sox 7/1 – This should be one of the more entertaining teams in the AL to watch. There’s plenty of offensive firepower now and the only question is how far can the pitching take them? Chris Sale will miss the opener after he injured himself getting out of a pool. Either way, this could be the team to beat in the AL Central.

    Seattle Mariners 7/1 – Robinson Cano has some help in the lineup now and that’s something he didn’t have last year. Nelson Cruz and Seth Smith should both give Cano better looks at the plate. If the pitching can follow the lead of King Felix then this could be a team right there at the finish.


    If the Tigers are going to win the AL Pennant then Justin Verlander must be much better than he has been the last two seasons.

    Detroit Tigers 8/1 – The Tigers have had a wonderful run dating back to the arrival of Dave Dombrowski but is age finally catching up to them? Both Victor Martinez and Miguel Cabrera are banged up entering the season and what can they expect from Justin Verlander who has been average the last two seasons?

    Cleveland Indians 9/1 – The Indians return Cy Young winner Corey Kluber and a lot of youth that gained valuable experience last year as the Indians pushed both Detroit and Kansas City to the brink. I can see this team winning the division or finishing well back in the pack. That’s how hard they are to figure out right now.

    Toronto Blue Jays 10/1 – The Jays added Josh Donaldson and field general Russel Martin but how much will they improve the team? Toronto was right there for a good part of the season in 2014 so can they see this year to the end?

    Oakland Athletics 12/1 – Count me as one who thinks the A’s take a step back this year. Yes, there are some new faces, the outfield is the same and there are two good starters leading the rotation but this division will be a bear and I don’t see the A’s winning the pennant.

    Baltimore Orioles 14/1 – Most people would say the Orioles did more than expected last year especially with Chris Davis having a brutal year. The Birds do get both Manny Machado and Matt Wieters back so perhaps they will be in the race again but pitching depth will be vital.

    Kansas City Royals 14/1 – The Royals aren’t returning to the World Series this year but they should still be competitive despite the loss of James Shields. If the bullpen is as successful as it was last year than anything is possible but I see a step back here.

    New York Yankees 14/1 – The Yanks have potentially deep rotation and solid bullpen. If they can get through the early portion of the season where all the talk will be “A-Rod” they could be right there. The first season without Derek Jeter in the locker room will be curious to watch as well.

    Texas Rangers 22/1 – The Rangers were devastated by injuries last season and this year isn’t starting much better. Shortstop Jurickson Profar is likely out for the season with a shoulder injury. Yu Darvish is expecting a big season but how much can he do?

    Houston Astros 28/1 – Houston added guys like Jed Lowrie and Evan Gattis but at the end of the day this will continue to be a team on the rise rather than one that will compete.

    Tampa Bay Rays 33/1 – Beloved manager Joe Maddon is in Chicago and these Rays have very little depth. This will be nothing short of a miracle if the Rays can even get to .500.

    Minnesota Twins 50/1 – Well, at least the fans have a lovely stadium to attend games in…. Sorry, this isn’t happening in the Twin Cities in 2015.

    My Favorite: I love the Mariners. They’ll fly under the radar in the Pacific Northwest before it’s too late for most opponents to notice.


    MLB Win Projections for 2015


    Can the Royals duplicate their success of last year?

    Can you believe teams have already reported for spring training in Florida and Arizona? Seems like the season just ended doesn’t it? Here are you season total win total projections from our friends at Bovada.

    Arizona Diamondbacks – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      71½ (-115)

    Under                                   71½ (-115)

    Despite the changes, I like the UNDER.

    Atlanta Braves – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      73½ (-115)

    Under                                   73½ (-115)

    The Braves always seem to find a way to succeed. Take the OVER.

    Baltimore Orioles – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      82½ (-115)

    Under                                   82½ (-115)

    I think they take a step back but go with the OVER.

    Boston Red Sox – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      86½ (-115)

    Under                                   86½ (-115)

    The BoSox have upgraded in all the right places. Take the OVER.

    Chicago Cubs – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      82½ (-115)

    Under                                   82½ (-115)

    Will the Cubs be better? Yes, but I’m not ready for over .500 so take the UNDER.

    Chicago White Sox – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      81½ (-115)

    Under                                   81½ (-115)

    I’m just not convinced this team is ready for recovery yet. Take the UNDER.

    Cincinnati Reds – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      77½ (-115)

    Under                                   77½ (-115)

    Take the UNDER as the Reds are still reshuffling the deck.

    Cleveland Indians – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      83½ (-115)

    Under                                   83½ (-115)

    Take the OVER. I like the direction of the Indians.

    Colorado Rockies – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      71½ (-115)

    Under                                   71½ (-115)

    I don’t see much to be positive about here. Take the UNDER.

    Detroit Tigers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      84½ (-115)

    Under                                   84½ (-115)

    It’s really hard to see them doing as well as recent years with injuries and pitching losses. Take the UNDER.

    Houston Astros – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      74½ (-115)

    Under                                   74½ (-115)

    Arrow up on the Astros. I like the OVER.

    Kansas City Royals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      79½ (-115)

    Under                                   79½ (-115)

    Can they repeat last year’s success? I say no. Take the OVER.

    Los Angeles Angels – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      89½ (-115)

    Under                                   89½ (-115)

    Take the OVER. Big year coming from the Halos.

    LA Dodgers

    Can the Dodgers get over the hump and get to the World Series?

    Los Angeles Dodgers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      92½ (-115)

    Under                                   92½ (-115)

    It’s a big number but I’ll take the OVER.

    Miami Marlins – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      81½ (-115)

    Under                                   81½ (-115)

    I really like the OVER here as new additions boost the Marlins.

    Milwaukee Brewers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      78½ (-115)

    Under                                   78½ (-115)

    Take the UNDER in a super-competitive NL Central.

    Minnesota Twins – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      70½ (-115)

    Under                                   70½ (-115)

    Managerial change brings instability. Take the UNDER.

    New York Mets – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      81½ (-115)

    Under                                   81½ (-115)

    What reason have they given me to be excited? Take the UNDER.

    New York Yankees – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      81½ (-115)

    Under                                   81½ (-115)

    If A-Rod can contribute without being a problem, I like the OVER.

    Oakland Athletics – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      80½ (-115)

    Under                                   80½ (-115)

    They stumbled to the finish last year and it continues in 2015. Take the UNDER.

    Philadelphia Phillies – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      68½ (-115)

    Under                                   68½ (-115)

    Can they really be this bad? Yes, take the UNDER.

    Pittsburgh Pirates – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      83½ (-115)

    Under                                   83½ (-115)

    Playoffs for two straight years in Pittsburgh and things look as good this season. Take the OVER.

    San Diego Padres – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      85½ (-115)

    Under                                   85½ (-115)

    Fantastic additions but I’m still going UNDER.

    San Francisco Giants – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      84½ (-115)

    Under                                   84½ (-115)

    The defending champs have some offense to replace but I still like the OVER.

    Seattle Mariners – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      86½ (-115)

    Under                                   86½ (-115)

    Could the Mariners be the cream of the crop in the AL? Maybe and I’m taking the OVER.

    St. Louis Cardinals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      88½ (-115)

    Under                                   88½ (-115)

    This number is really close for me. I’ll take the UNDER but barely.

    Tampa Bay Rays – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      78½ (-115)

    Under                                   78½ (-115)

    I just don’t see this team improving much. Take the UNDER.

    Texas Rangers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      77½ (-115)

    Under                                   77½ (-115)

    With Profar likely out for the season I’ll take the UNDER.

    Toronto Blue Jays – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      82½ (-115)

    Under                                   82½ (-115)

    Lots of excitement in Canada about this team and rightfully so. I’ll take the OVER.

    Washington Nationals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

    Over                                      92½ (-115)

    Under                                   92½ (-115)

    I see no reason why this shouldn’t be a World Series team. Take the OVER.


    MLB Offensive Props Favor the UNDER


    Odds makers have released hundreds of props for the Major League Baseball season. Several of the props are geared toward results prior to this summer’s All-Star break giving bettors something to look forward to prior to the end of the 162-game regular season.

    When looking over the totals in the props for offensive results on two-way props, there are a few that appear to be high considering that strong pitching has dominated.

    Pitching dominates so much now that the MLB has considered shrinking the strike zone at the lower end. The rules committee will analyze the strike zone during this season with a potential changed coming for the 2016 season.

    However, bookmakers know most gamblers love to bet the OVERs, which makes them factor that into their final numbers.

    One of the two-way props that stands out is the OVER 58.5 for the leader in stolen bases. More teams appear to be trying to get one of their runners in scoring position through a stolen base due to the game being dominated by pitching and runs are not scored as easily any longer.

    Kansas City used the stolen bases as an offensive weapon on many occasions last season, which helped them to reach the World Series. Since copycatting is commonplace, look for more teams to use the Royals form of advancing runners.

    However, do not look for stolen bases in the number that were posted during the 1970s and ‘80s, but it seems quite probable at least one player will steal 58.5 bases this season.

    When it comes to power, the big what if is whether Giancarlo Stanton can remain healthy during the entire season. If he is able to play the full 162-game schedule, which he has not done for three straight seasons, he will likely hit the OVER on home runs of 44.5 and in RBIs of 126.5.

    Last season Nelson Cruz was the MLB home run leader with just 40, and Adrian Gonzalez led in RBIs with 116. Therefore, the numbers 44.5 and 126.5 looks high.

    It is expected that pitching will dominate again and some feel even more so than last year.

    When making a choice for over/under on a two way prop beat, make sure you factor how strong the pitching has been the past few seasons. Most of the props that are two-way and offensive look like solid UNDERs with the exception of the stolen bases and total hits. The two-way total hits prop is sitting at 206.5, there has to be at least one hitter in MLB who can record more than 206.5 hits. However, just one player last season, Jose Altuve had over 206.5 hits, with 225.


    Here’s the Latest on the Races in Major League …




    Buck Showalter has his Orioles just days away from an East Division title.

    With about 14-15 games to go in the regular season of Major League Baseball, there are races that are just about to end and some that are about as close as they can get. Here’s a look at where we stand and who I like for the MVPs as well.


    The surprising Baltimore Orioles have their magic number down to just three games as I write this and will clinch their first division championship since 1997 and have not won a pennant since 1983.

    Toronto and New York are four and five games respectively out of a wild-card berth and unless something drastic happens neither will make the postseason. An unfortunate end to a great career for the Yankees’ Derek Jeter.


    The Tigers swept the Cleveland Indians over the weekend to essentially knock them out of it. Detroit now has a 1.5 games lead over Kansas City who currently has a wild-card struggle with the Oakland A’s and Seattle Mariners.

    The Royals and Tigers will meet for three more games later this week in Kansas City and each still have series’ left with Cleveland and the White Sox.


    The LA Angels had their ten-game winning streak snapped Sunday but they lead the division by an amazing 10 games over Oakland. The A’s and Mariners are both still well alive for wild-card berths with only the Detroit/KC loser perhaps being a factor. Whether the Mariners make the postseason or not, Manager Lloyd McClendon should garner serious consideration for Manager of the Year honors. 

    AL Picks: Orioles, Tigers, Angels. WCs Royals and A’s.

    AL Pennant: Angels



    I'm not at all surprised that Williams has the Nationals on the verge of a division title.


    The Washington Nationals ran away and hid with this division in the second half of the season and currently lead the Atlanta Braves by 10.5 games. The Braves are currently four games behind the Pittsburgh Pirates for the final wild-card spot.

    NL Central

    Milwaukee has had a rough second half of the season and has dropped to third in the division. St. Louis currently leads the Pirates by 3.5 games for the division lead. Pittsburgh and St. Louis will not see each other anymore down the stretch.

    The Brewers can control their own destiny with series against both St. Louis and Pittsburgh in the final 15 games.


    The San Francisco Giants have hung tougher than I thought they would with their rivals to the south. The LA Dodgers have a three game lead over the Giants and will entertain them for three more games next week.

    At this time, San Francisco would need a major collapse to miss out on the playoffs altogether.

    NL Picks: Nationals, Cardinals, Dodgers. WCs Pirates and Giants.

    NL Pennant: Nationals


    I’ll start in the National League where there shouldn’t even be a vote. Los Angeles Dodgers’ starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw will run away with the Cy Young Award and should also take the MVP prize as well.

    On Sunday, he picked up his 19th win and gave up just two runs. Amazingly, his ERA actually went up to 1.70 for the season. Others in the discussion would include Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates, Giancarlo Stanton of Miami and Jonathan Lucroy of the Brewers.

    This is Kershaw’s year though.

    In the junior circuit, the competition might be just as poor with Mike Trout on the cusp of finally getting the MVP Award after finishing twice behind Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera.

    There are cases to be made for Oakland’s Josh Donaldson or Kansas City’s Alex Gordon but I don’t know how anyone catches Trout who deserves the award as much as anyone in recent memory.


    Odds Makers Take Notice of Brewers Sweeping Dodgers in LA


    Major League Baseball has less than a month and a half before the regular season ends and the race for the World Series begins.

    Odds makers have released their most recent futures for the World Series. The Milwaukee Brewers sweep of the Los Angeles Dodgers over the weekend was noticed by bookmakers, as the odds for the Brewers on Bovada and sportsbook.com were shortened.

    Milwaukee had its odds shorted from 14 to 1 last week to 12 to 1 on topbet and betonline.

    What made the sweep of the Dodgers so impressive by the Brewers was it was on the road, against a top National League team and included defeating Clayton Kershaw.

    Milwaukee has played well all season and is currently leading the National League Central by 3 games over the St. Louis Cardinals. The Brewers are 70-55 and have the second best NL record.

    With the additional of a second spot in the wildcard race, more emphasis has been placed on winning the division so as not to play in a one-game play-in.

    That is why the seven remaining head-to-head games between the Brewers and the second place Cardinals will be so important down the stretch.

    The Brewers have a very deep lineup with Ryan Braun, Carlos Gomez, Aramis Ramirez and Jonathan Lucroy, a candidate for the NL MVP award.

    The pitching staff has not been same as the batting order, but owns an ERA of 3.60.

    Yovani Gallardo showed he could pitch with the best of them by earning a win against Kershaw. Gallardo, Wily Peralta and Kyle Lohse are three formidable starters that can make life miserable for any opposing batter.

    Nevertheless, there are nearly 40 games left in the baseball regular season and the stretch run of September is still to come.

    All of the races in the Majors are within 7.5 games. The Baltimore Orioles lead the AL East by that amount over the New York Yankees, while Washington leads by 6 games over the Atlanta Braves.

    In the AL West on a half game separates the Los Angeles Angels and the Oakland A’s at the top. The Los Angeles Dodgers lead the NL West by 3 ½ games.


    LOS DODGERS 7 to 2

    OAKLAND A’S 9 to 2










    MLB Trade Deadline Deals Move World Series Odds


    The July 31 trade deadline has come and gone. Teams battling for a spot in the postseason and to win the World Series made trades to better their current rosters before 4:00 p.m. ET on Thursday.

    A team can never have too much pitching. That is why the Oakland A’s have gone out and picked up as many of the top quality arms that are available on the market as they hope to win the American League pennant and battle for a World Series title.

    On Thursday, prior to the trade deadline Oakland traded Yoenis Cespedes their power hitter to the Boston Red Sox for veteran southpaw Jon Lester.

    Lester was one of the two top pitchers still available on the trade deadline.

    Before the trade, the A’s on sportsbooks like Bovada and betonline, were already a co-favorite to win the World Series with odds of 9 to 2.

    However, Lester adds one more dimension to the A’s chances. Oakland’s starting rotation before Lester joined was 3.32, which was tops in the American League. Lester this season has the lowest ERA of his career at 2.57.

    Oakland following the trade for Lester saw their World Series odds shortened on topbet and sportsbook.com from 9 to 2 to 7 to 2.

    Some insiders however question the move made by the A’s. Cespedes was their No. 4 hitter in the lineup and loved by everyone in the A’s clubhouse. A shakeup like this for the league’s current top team might end up as a negative over the short run.

    Oakland general manager Billy Beane might have been tempted to make the trade after seeing one of the two pitchers in another deal he made struggle.

    On July 5, Beane traded for Jeff Samardjiza and teammate Jason Hammel. Samardjiza has lived up to expectation, as Oakland is 4-1 with him on the mound since the trade. However, Hammel has been pummeled in each of his four starts. He is 0-4 with an ERA of 9.54 since joining the A’s.

    Oakland has the best offense in the majors averaging 5 runs per game, but the question is how they will fare without Cespedes’ big bat in the fourth spot in the batting order.

    He had 17 home runs and 67 RBIs along with 102 hits to lead the team. The A’s picked up Jonny Gomes in the same deal but he does not have the skill at the plate or on the field as Cespedes does.

    The Detroit Tigers made a late traded prior to the trade deadline acquiring David Price the talented left-hander for Alvin Jackson and other players in a three-team deal.




    DETROIT TIGERS 11 to 2




    Home Run Derby Odds Because There Isn’t Much Else …


    Target Field requires big power and Giancarlo Stanton will be the guy tonight to provide it.

    It wasn’t that long ago when all four major professional sports in America were active. Back in May we had the NBA and NHL Playoffs going, Major League Baseball was in its’ third month of play and the NFL Draft was happening in New York.

    Now we have reached that odd moment in American sports where there is absolutely nothing going on. There is no hockey, no hoops, no football and no baseball as the we’ve reached the All-Star Break. Of course if you’re extremely hard up for the presence of athletes on your television, then you can tune in to the ESPY Awards hosted by Drake on Wednesday night.

    When I think of the word ‘Drake’ I think of duck hunting but that’s just me… Anyway, coming up tonight is the All-Star Game’s Home Run Derby and I’ve got the odds on who is favored to win in Minneapolis.

    If you choose to watch the festivities this evening from Target Field then I highly suggest that you turn your television volume way down or just hit the mute button altogether. Just the thought of Chris Berman’s “back, back, back” calls turns my stomach. If you can ‘stomach’ it, then enjoy the Derby while laying some money on these home run hopefuls.

    Giancarlo Stanton 3/1 – Stanton is tied for the National League lead in home runs with 21 and probably has more raw power than anyone else in the field. Because he is the favorite, does that add a little bit of pressure?

    Yoenis Cespedes 9/2 – The young A’s superstar has just 14 homers a year after he hit 26 but there’s still time for him to catch that number. His quick bat could be an asset as hitting it down the lines in Target Field is crucial to getting the ball out.


    Yasiel Puig is more than capable of launching numerous shots out of Target Field tonight.

    Yasiel Puig 5/1 – Normally this field takes home run hitters and dismisses them with a wave of a flag but with BP pitching, a guy like Puig can thrive. He could provide some of the biggest blasts of the night.

    Jose Bautista 11/2 – Joey Bats has 17 home runs which actually trails by nine, the leader on his team Edwin Encarnacion. Another guy with a quick bat, he could power some balls down the left-field line.

    Troy Tulowitzki 8/1 – Tulo has 21 dingers but he of course has the asterisk that says he plays in Denver where the ball flies a little better than anywhere else. I’m not sure he has the overall power to hit enough bombs.

    Josh Donaldson 10/1 – The Oakland youngster has 20 home runs which is a good number for playing in a big stadium like Oakland. I’m not sure it’s his time though.

    Justin Morneau 10/1 – He will clearly be a sentimental favorite tonight as the long-time Twin comes home after spending time in Pittsburgh last season and in Colorado now. He has 13 home runs and is the only lefty in the competition.

    Todd Frazier 12/1 – The Cincinnati third baseman enters with 19 home runs on the season but seven of those were considered ‘barely out.’

    Adam Jones 14/1 – Baltimore’s Jones has 16 home runs and like Frazier, seven of those were considered ‘barely out’ which doesn’t bode well for this park.

    Brian Dozier 14/1 – All due respect to Morneau, Dozier will be the fan favorite since he plays for the Twins and is having a very good years. Dozier has 18 home runs but his average distance of 379 feet could result in struggles for him.

    Winner: Raw power is needed in this ball park where Twins’ Manager Ron Gardenhire says the ball gets out quicker to left than it does anywhere else. Therefore, I’ll take Stanton, but don’t be surprised if Puig makes a run.



    Four MLB Games to Consider


    Monday has a big lineup of Major League Baseball action but three games have first or second place teams in different divisions or leagues facing off, while one has division rivals going head to head.

    The Baltimore Orioles visit the Washington Nationals. The Orioles just won two of three games versus the Boston Red Sox at famed Fenway Park.

    The Orioles won in 12 innings on Sunday and were +120 road dogs on Bovada and topbet.

    Washington has now won two of its past three games, winning the final two games of a series at home with the Chicago Cubs.

    In both wins, Washington on betonline and sportsbook.com was a -175 favorite. The wins moved the Nationals to 5-1 during its current home stand.

    Pick: Orioles, OVER

    The Pittsburgh Pirates visit the St. Louis Cardinals in a matchup between National League Central division rivals.

    St. Louis lost its last two straight to the Miami Marlins, while Pirates swept the Philadelphia Phillies over the weekend to take second place from St. Louis and trail the Milwaukee Brewers by 4 ½.

    Pick: St. Louis, UNDER

    The Toronto Blue Jays second in the American League East visit the Los Angeles Angels who are currently in second place in the American League West.

    Toronto has not had the powerful offense it did earlier in the season and was swept at Oakland in four games over the weekend. The Blue Jays scored just four runs in the four games.

    Los Angeles remained hot winning their 10th straight game at home Sunday beating Houston 6-1 to also earn a four game sweep.

    The Angels have won 19 of 21 home games since late May and have scored five runs or more in eight straight games at home.

    Los Angeles took three out of four against Toronto in Toronto during the early part of May. The Angels are 8-2 head to head with Toronto over the past 10 games.

    The Blue Jays are 1-9 over their past 10 games on the road. The UNDER is 9-2 over the past 11 Toronto games.

    Pick: Angels, UNDER

    The Battle of the Bay Area takes place tonight when the Oakland Athletics host the San Francisco Giants. Oakland owns the best record in the majors at 55-33, after they swept Toronto. Oakland is 9-1 over its past 10 game at home.

    San Francisco won two out of three over the weekend from San Diego on the road. However, the Giants are just 6-15 over their past 21 games.

    Last season, American League Oakland was 3-1 head to head with their Bay Area rivals from the National League.

    Pick: Oakland, OVER