The Rangers and Mariners are a couple of teams going nowhere fast. Both looked like they could sneak into playoff contention at points earlier this season, but they’ve both fallen off since then. The Mariners had the best record in baseball a couple of weeks into the season, but it’s been a steady decline from there. The Rangers looked like a plucky Wild Card contender before their production started to dip after the All-Star break.
The two teams will play the second of a four-game weekend series on Friday night in Arlington. While neither team has much to play for, there is still betting value to be had on this game. Marco Gonzales will take the hill for the Mariners on Friday opposite rookie lefty Kolby Allard for Texas.
|2019 ATR Home||32-37||33-33|
|2019 ATR Away||25-31||40-29|
|2019 O/U Home||38-27-4||33-32-1|
|2019 O/U Away||40-25-1||27-39-3|
The Mariners’ pitching staff isn’t great, but Marco Gonzales is one of the few bright spots. His season-long numbers hardly jump off the page (17.9% strikeout rate, 4.91 SIERA), but he’s a solid lefty that has been good about limiting damage over the course of his brief career. He has allowed 17 homers through 28 starts, which isn’t bad in this era of the juiced baseball.
This game has a high implied total of 10 ½ runs at baseball betting sites, despite the fact that both teams are throwing solid starters to the mound and they’re both facing mediocre offenses. Gonzales will face a Rangers lineup tonight missing a couple of their best hitters in Joey Gallo and Nomar Mazara.
Texas hasn’t fared all that well against left-handed pitching to begin with, and Gonzales will have the platoon advantage against some of their better healthy hitters in Shin-Soo Choo, Willie Calhoun, and Rougned Odor. Assuming he can get past the likes of Nick Solak and Elvis Andrus without allowing too much damage, there is little reason to believe Gonzales will struggle much tonight.
The weather in Arlington is conducive to hitting, but a sheer lack of talent in the Ranger lineup has me thinking Gonzales should fare pretty well tonight.
Allard came over from the Braves in the trade deadline deal that sent reliever Chris Martin to Atlanta. Allard has made three starts since donning a Ranger uniform, and he’s gotten steadily better with each outing. His last appearance was easily the best of his big-league career. Allard struck out eight White Sox over the course of six shutout innings last Saturday in the Windy City.
As mentioned, the Mariners lineup he’ll face tonight isn’t all that impressive. Tom Murphy (.460 wOBA vs. LHP) has absolutely crushed southpaws this season, so it won’t be much of a surprise if the Mariner catcher manages to take the Ranger starter deep in this spot. Otherwise, there really isn’t much to fear. This isn’t the same lineup that had the likes of Edwin Encarnacion, Jay Bruce, and Mitch Haniger earlier in the season.
Murphy is really the only threatening bat in the lineup from a power perspective. Mallex Smith, Dee Gordon, and J.P. Crawford are speedsters without much pop, while Allard will have the platoon advantage against home run hitters like Daniel Vogelbach and Kyle Seager. Seattle has a high strikeout rate against lefties on the year, too, which only makes it a more appealing spot for Allard.
I really like the under for this Mariners vs Rangers game. 10 ½ is a high total, but the hot weather is the main reason for it. The odds favor the under, too, but I still think there is upside to be had in betting the under at -115. This game features a couple of respectable starting pitchers taking on not-so-impressive offenses. Assuming both starters are able to avoid a full-on meltdown, I see this game going under the implied total pretty easily.
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