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Tue, 05/13/14 - 10:10 PM Bryan Leonard | MLB Money Line
double-dime bet 973 TAM (-110) Pinnacle vs 974 SEA
Results: W, $200
Analysis: 973 Tampa Bay at Seattle

With a day to rest the overworked bullpen, David Price and the Rays make the long trip to the Pacific Northwest to take on Hisashi Iwakuma and the Mariners. There aren't many chances to get David Price at -110, but the oddsmakers are overreacting to Price's start to the season. Price has a 4.53 ERA, but a lot of that can be attributed to bad luck with a .344 BABIP against. Price's 3.50 FIP signals that improvement is coming and his 2.63 xFIP suggests that his home run rate is way above average given the number of fly balls and the home run rate is going to normalize soon. There's no better park for a home run to normalize than Safeco Field in Seattle.

Price has seen a small drop in velocity, but he's still throwing with the same control and inducing more swings and misses, so we're not worrying about an underlying injury. Price has a K/BB ratio of 58/6 on the season. His line drive rate is right in line with his career average and the home run rate will come down to a reasonable number. He's throwing first-pitch strikes to over 73 percent of hitters, getting more swings and misses, both inside and outside the zone, and has a 2.70 SIERA. He's really underpriced against a Mariners lineup full of left-handed hitters.

Hisashi Iwakuma came back from the DL with guns blazing, but that was against the Astros and an aggressive Kansas City lineup that plays right into his hands. The Rays will force Iwakuma to get into the strike zone, which could be a problem given that he only threw 38 percent of his pitches in the strike zone against the Royals in his last start. He is still trying to build up arm strength, so his velocity is down a couple ticks from where it was.

The Mariners rank 27th in defensive runs saved at -20 already on the season. Most of the infielders are below average on the season and Iwakuma is a ground ball pitcher. That's something to watch for in this outing against a Rays team that has several guys that run well.

The first true test for Iwakuma comes in this start and Price is due for a dominant outing if you believe in the advanced metrics like we do.


Pick Made: May 13 2014 4:43AM PST
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