Athletics Astros Baseball
Oakland Athletics' Elvis Andrus (17) celebrates his solo home run with Seth Brown during the sixth inning of the team's baseball game against the Houston Astros, Wednesday, July 7, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

Degens Only: Friday Plays, Aug. 6

The wait is over… kind of. Football has started! The Hall of Fame game was played last night and while at times it was a little boring, and tough to watch, it was a welcomed site to see players back on the gridiron. While most of the big names were on the sidelines, it did give us a little look into the two teams that played, especially at QB for both teams as one is likely in his final year and the other is often injured. Mason Rudolph looked like he was still dealing with affects from getting hit in the head with Myles Garrett’s helmet, while Dobbs was impressive, and will get more looks going forward.  The Cowboys likely need to search for a veteran backup QB at this point. As for today, the search is over let’s get into today’s top plays below. 

The A Team: A ‘s -1.5
The A’s continue to try and catch the Astros for first place in the West, and if they’re going to be successful, they’re going to need to beat teams like the Rangers. Oakland is 15-7 in Bassitt’s starts this season as he sit’s 11-3 with just over a three run ERA. He has seen the Rangers three times this season and Oakland has won all three games and covered the run line in each. In all three starts combined, the Rangers have only been able to score two runs and in all three games they have only been able to score one run per game. We all know everything about the Rangers is pretty terrible, but Folty is really bad. The team is 7-14 in his starts and he has an awful 2-10 record. He has been a run factory giving up 25 runs in just his last five starts. The long ball has been a big problem for him as well in those last five starts he has allowed 12 home runs, his last start snapped a 10 game streak where he had allowed a homer. The scales are so uneven in this one and there is no choice but to take the A’s -1.5.

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Big Bad Birds: Blue Jays ML
Listen, if you have been a baseball analyst, you knew it when you started seeing it. This Red Sox team is starting to crack. What I mean by that is certain guys and teams even over achieve for a period of time that it masks the fact that they’re not as good as the public thinks. Now the Sox are not bottom dwellers this season, but nor are they the 64-win team they are right now. There is no question that their pitching has overachieved this season, but for the first half of the season, so did their hitting. The pitching has gone first and now the hitting is starting to show. The offense has only scored 14 runs in their last five games, when one of their big three is struggling and they have taken turns as of late everything is thrown off. This division race is nowhere near over as the Yankees have surged and the Red Sox currently sit one game back of the Rays, but if you look, the Sox have played every single game besides the Tigers series against the AL East since the break.  Now they will do so again until the end of August, then they have another 14 games against the division in September. The August and September schedule for the Sox is brutal and if they can’t gain any momentum back they could end up the odd man out for the playoffs. I look at it as a clean slate right now for Sox pitching and Evoldi is somewhat struggling as the Sox have lost his last four starts and this Toronto team is nothing to mess with at the moment. Stay sharp look for spots to fade the Sox and start here with the Blue Jays ML.

Always Over in Philadelphia: Phillies/Mets over 9
So far, this one were looking at situational trends specifically. These two teams have played 13 times this season and the over is 6-6-1 overall. Let’s look at the situation for this game, and we see that the over is 5-1 in the games that are played in Philly. Stroman’s strikeout numbers are dropping, while the amount of games that he allows multiple runs is rising. Gibson has slipped a little as well for the Phillies, allowing multiple runs in his last 4 starts. The Phillies are also 9-4-2 to the over in Gibson’s starts this season. Both bullpens are coming in with ERA’s near five, so there is a good chance we tack on a fair amount of the runs later in the game. Either way this one goes over take the over 9.

Love the Left: Nats TT over 3.5
The Nationals have been a LHP powerhouse for a few years now and no different is this season.  Since mid-July, the Nats are hitting .305 against lefties. Muller has been hard on a lot of teams, but this Nats team has been hitting their stride after imploding their team ironically enough. In the Nationals last 12 games, the over to the posted total is 10-2. Muller usually goes and the Braves pen is averaging giving up around two runs per outing. This is a really low number that the Nats should be able to pretty easily go over. Take the Nats team total over 3.5.

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