Ew…Geno got hurt and the Giants literally couldn’t do anything on offense. Tough Monday Night for us but we have some playoff baseball today to get the week going in the right direction.
I don’t love that the Rangers lost 3 out of 4 to end the season but they did go 4-2 vs the Rays this season winning 4 of the last 5 against them.
Jordan Montgomery is starting for the Rangers and he’s pitched 6+ innings in each of his last 4 starts while only allowing 2 runs in his last 27 innings pitched. It will be his second career start in the Postseason. I love that the top two hitters in the Rays lineup are just 7 for 36 (.194) combined against him.
The Rangers bullpen isn’t as good as the Rays so we are counting on Montgomery to go deep in this game.
Tyler Glasnow will start for the Rays and he actually struggled down the stretch with a 4.86 ERA and he went just 3-3 during that stretch. Playoff teams have hit Glasnow hard this season and he went 3-7 against playoff teams.
You can increase your chances by taking Rangers +1.5 on the run line but I am confident in them taking Game 1 outright.
Let’s take our chances by cashing an underdog to start the playoffs
Blue Jays (Gausman) (+106)
Speaking of underdogs, the Blue Jays are listed as dogs but the line has been moving as the day has gone on. They are +106 as of the time of writing this.
I don’t trust Pablo Lopez in general but especially not against this Jays lineup that scored 4 runs in 5.2 innings against him earlier this season. Lopez hasn’t been great down the stretch and has actually allowed 11 earned runs in his final 3 starts of the regular season all against lineups that didn’t make the playoffs and 2 of those 3 ranked worst and second worst in runs per game this season.
Kevin Gausman will pitch for the Jays and he comes in ranked 7th with a 3.16 ERA on the season. He did get touched up in 1 of his starts vs this Twins lineup this season but the Jays went 2-0 against the Twins with him on the mound.
I’m liking the value on the Blue Jays here and I think they will get to Lopez while I expect Gausman to put together a strong outing despite struggles in previous playoff appearances.
Phillies (Wheeler) (-152)
Zack Wheeler will pitch for the Phillies and he’s turned in 3 solid starts vs the Marlins this season - 6 innings 2 runs, 6 innings 3 runs, & 6 innings 1 run. He’s been solid against this Marlins lineup in a huge sample size.
The Marlins top hitter and best hitter for average in the league Luis Arraez has only had 1 at bats in the last week and a half due to an ankle injury.
Jesus Luzardo will pitch for the Marlins and he’s been solid but I think it will be tough for him to go toe to toe with Wheeler.
This Phillies team returns to the Postseason after losing in the World Series last year, they were just 34-34 mid June before flipping the switch to finish 90-72. They should be motivated to make another run.
I like them to take Game 1 and I also like them to win this series although that’s a higher price tag on the moneyline.