When the March Madness picks are set each season, it's never surprising to see the Gonzaga Bulldogs on the shortlist of potential NCAA Tournament champions.
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MLB Betting Tips & Game Odds
Matchup No. 1
The Teams: Kansas City Royals at Texas Rangers (Thursday, July 28th to Sunday, July 31st)
Why Kansas City could win: Sitting at a sub-par, less-than .500 record, the reigning World Series champions have endured their share of troubles this season. The Royals have struggled to replace pitcher Johnny Cueto (who they famously left off their White House champions visit earlier this month) and the rest of their batting order hasn't quite found their groove from last season. However, they are still the reigning world champions and should not be taken lightly. The bright side in this matchup is that Kansas City will trot out the top of their lineup in Edinson Volquez, Ian Kennedy and Yordano Ventura. Though Danny Duffy was the only Royals pitcher to score a win against the Rangers, the Royals are still potent.
Keep in mind too that Eric Hosmer and Salvador Perez were the stars of the 2016 All-Star Game by powering the AL to a 4-2 victory. So there is an outside chance that the Kansas City sluggers have their stroke back.
Why Texas wil win: Matching up almost a week ago to the day, Texas knocked off the Royals when they visited Kansas City. During the series a week ago, Texas lost game one by a score of 3-1, but bounced back to win games two (7-4) and three (2-1).
Even though the Rangers lost the sweet-swinging Prince Fielder to season-ending neck surgery earlier this week, Texas has enough firepower to contend with any team in the American League. This is especially the case for the Royals, who have been abysmal away from Kauffman Stadium. Prior to the series against Texas, Kansas City had nearly the same road record as the lowly Twins. Additionally, the Rangers will still be at home after a series against the A's.
While there might be some concern for fatigue on the part of the Rangers, Texas is cruising to another AL West title and the Royals should only be a blip on the radar this upcoming series in Arlington.
Prediction: Rangers take the series, 3 to 1
Matchup No. 2
The Teams: Houston Astros at Detroit Tigers (Friday, July 29th to Sunday, July 31st)
Why Houston will win: Coming out of the All-Star break gate, the Astros have jumped out to one of the stronger starts in the AL. As of Monday evening, the Astros were 6-4 in their last 10 games and are coming off a strong sweep of the Angels at home. Spearheaded by versatile second baseman Jose Altuve (2016 AL All-Star starter), Houston has stayed alive this season to challenge the Rangers for the AL West division title. The Astros have also overcome the poor start of 2015 All-Star pitcher Dallas Keuchel and found another strong arm in Doug Fister who leads the team in wins.
The Tigers will also be without slugger J.D. Martinez who will start his rehab from an elbow fracture this week. Even with Martinez in the lineup, the Astros powered past the Tigers earlier this season in Houston by taking two games away from the Tigers at home. Though the contest was close as each game was decided by two games or less: (1-0, HOU), (5-3,DET), (5-4, HOU), the Astros should be able to cruise along to another victory.
Why Detroit could win: The Tigers really excel when it comes to their batting rotation. Detroit is a top-10 MLB team in batting average and feature two of the top sluggers in the American League, Miguel Cabrera (the team leader in batting average) and Ian Kinsler (leads the team in home runs and RBIs).
The Tigers will have the edge in starting pitching as well with ace Justin Verlander getting the nod in game three and Anibal Sanchez matching up against Mike Fiers in game two. The homefield also will be a huge boost as the Tigers will be coming off of road stand against the Red Sox and White Sox.
In a matchup between two second-place teams, expect this to be one of the more competitive clashes in this week's slate of MLB games.
Prediction: Houston takes the series 2 to 1
Category : Betting PicksMore articles...
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