Major league baseball on Sunday and we will see the LA Dodgers take on the St Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium in St Louis. Free Pick to follow. First pitch is scheduled for a 2:15 PM (Eastern) start time and the game will be televised locally.
Over/ Under: 7 -110
This is game 3 of a 3 game series between these National League foes. The Cards took game 1, but the Dodgers took game 2. With yesterday's win the Dodgers grabbed back first place in the NL West by a half a game over the Giants. The Cards have the best record in baseball at 32-17 and they lead the Central division by 6 games over both the Cubs and Pirates.
The Dodgers rank 9th in scoring (4.46 rpg), 8th in hitting (.260) and 2nd in homers (53) while on the mound they are 3rd in ERA (3.16) and 3rd in WHIP (1.16). The Dodgers are 41-19 in their last 60 games vs. a right-handed starter and 38-18 in their last 56 games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30, but just 2-8 in their last 10 games as an underdog.
St Louis ranks 16th in scoring (4.20 rpg), 4th in hitting (.267) and 24th in homers (39), while on the mound they are 1st in ERA (2.76) and 9th in WHIP (1.24). St Louis has gone 41-12 in their last 53 home games and 39-12 in their last 51 home games with the total set at 7.0-8.5, but 0-5 in their last 5 after allowing 5 runs or more in their previous game.
Getting the ball for Dodgers today will be Brett Anderson, who is 2-2 with a 3.47 ERA in 9 starts this year, while on the road he has gone 1-2 with a 4.22 ERA. Brett has never faced the Cardinals in his career.
Taking the hill for St Louis today will be Carlos Martinez, who has gone 4-2 with a 3.54 ERA, which includes a 1-1 mark and an 0.98 ERA in his last 3 starts. Carlos is also 2-1 with a 3.90 ERA at home this year. Martinez is 0-1 with a 5.14 ERA in 4 games (3 starts) vs the Dodgers in his career.
Pick: I like the pitching matchup on the mound and with both tems not being great on offense right now I will look to the under in this game. The Dodgers have averaged just 2.8 rpg in their last 10 games, while the Cards have averaged just 3.4 rpg over the same stretch. Brett Anderson does have a 4.22 ERA on the road, but his road starts have averaged just 5.25 rpg and the Cards have hit lefties at just a .179 clip in their last 10 games. Carlos Martinez has been on fire of late with an 0.98 ERA in his last starts and he should have good success vs the struggling Dodgers offense. I look for a 3-2 type final here.
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MLB Pitching Stats: DBF, Difficulty of Batters Faced
Pro handicappers Teddy Covers and Steve Fezzik talk about the difference between lazy stats and legit stats, telling you what you need to know about DBF or Difficulty of Batters Faced. This stat is a favorite among sabremetrics followers, who prefer this over stats looking at how a pitcher does versus a team when the team's rotation is constantly changing. Teddy sees the value in DBF, while Fezzik thinks some of the worst DBF performers like AJ Burnett are actually some of the best pitchers in baseball.