Senior Handicapper Matt Rivers of OffshoreInsiders.com has a free pick on Sunday is on the Denver Nuggets (-11) to Orlando.
Reasoning: It’s a lot of lumber to lay and not something I would do all that often but just look at the situation here for the depleted Magic. Dwight Howard is no longer around, this team played in a little altitude last night running with the young and improving Jazz in Utah and now travels to Denver and has to play in the Mile High City against the Nuggets.
Denver did play last night and had a big win in Phoenix so they aren’t exactly fresh as a daisy themselves but George Karl’s squad is used to playing with less oxygen and has the definite potential to use that monster advantage here.
It’s never easy to play on a back-to-back with the second game in Denver and without Howard it’s asking a bit much for the regressing visitors from Orlando to compete throughout making me believe we’re looking at a blowout in the end.
Rivers pick: Denver Nuggets
Now from Canadien Crew St. Louis Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
Odds: St. Louis -145/Pittsburgh +130; 8 o/u
St. Louis is looking to build on their massive lead in the NLC with over the Pirates tonight. The Pirates season is falling off the rails and a win over the Cardinals could really boost their fortunes. Otherwise, the Pirates are in serious danger of looking like, well, the Pirates.
Taking the mound for the Pirates is Erik Bedard (0-3).Over 17 innings of play this season he’s only thrown 10 K’s, given up 17 hits and five runs (all earned). Bedard has not looked good this season and it’s likely Pitt will be visiting that bullpen early on.
Pittsburgh hasn’t been doing much offensively over the past few games. They’re ranked 30th in every leading statistical category and their troubles may continue into today. Collectively, their putting up a .201 betting average.
On the other side of the spectrum, the Cardinals are coming at number two or three in those same categories. Thing just aren’t looking good for Pittsburgh and their fortunes aren’t likely to change today as they face Kyle Lohse.
Lohse (2-0) is looking very good for the Cardinals this year with an impressive .89 ERA over 22 innings. Along the way he’s only given up two runs, both earned, off of just ten hits. Oh, and he’s also struck out 11 batters. Expectations are sky high in St. Louis, and Lohse seems to be delivering so far.
Bettors should note that the under is the heavy favorite when the Pirates are in the game. So far this season the under has paid eleven times; the over has only come in twice. For St. Louis, the under has come in 6 of 14 times. We’ll stick with that trend and recommend the under.
This game, and every other game against Pittsburgh until further notice, is the Cardinals’ to lose. Take St. Louis.
The Pick: St. Louis -145
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