Point Spread: 1.50 | -145.00 Cleveland (Away)
I played the Tribe on the run-line yesterday (-1.5 -120) and I think they offer a lot of value on the R.L. again today, this time laying what I feel to be a very reasonable mid-sized price for the extra 1.5 runs of insurance. Cleveland comes into this game with some momentum, it swept yesterday's double-header with the Twins easily; the Indians also come into this game with revenge on the mind (also a possible playoff spot!). "Heading to Detroit, you want to be on a high note. We have three big games ahead of us. You want to make sure you win them all," Cleveland pitcher T.J. House explained last night. "I'm excited with where we're headed. We have a good ballclub and we're (going) in the right direction." Cleveland though has been outscored 32-15 in dropping four of its last five vs. the Tigers. Detroit had been rolling merrily along until Wednesday when it lost for the first time in its last four games in listless 3-0 setback to the Royals. So here's a huge opportunity for Cleveland to make a move, in fact I would call this a season defining series for the visitors who sit just 3.5 games back of the home side in the playoff race. Detroit turns to David Price (13-11, 3.33 ERA) who has been horrible of late, he's 2-3 with a pedestrian 4.10 ERA in seven starts since coming over from Tampa Bay. Price in fact owns a ghastly 7.13 ERA over his last three outings after getting shelled for five runs in his team's 5-4 loss to San Francisco on Saturday. Note that Price was also lit up for eight runs off 12 hits over just two innings in an 8-4 loss to the Yanks on August 27th. The only time he's looked any good of late was on September 1st vs. the Indians, giving up one run and stirking out eight over seven innings in a 12-1 win. So which Price is going to show up today? I'm inclined to believe it will be the struggling one, Cleveland comes in focused and I think can really take advantage here. The visitors also have to be feeling pretty good about their chances in sending the red hot Carlos Carrasco to the hill, who is 4-0 over his last six starts, posting a miniscule 0.70 ERA in that span. Most recently Carrasco struck out eight and came within a single out of recoridng his first shutout in his team's 2-0 win over the White Sox on Sunday. Carrasco comes in having had success vs. Detroit this season, while he allowed a season-worst 10 hits against the Tigers at the beginning of the month, he managed to work around any damage and would yield just one run while striking out a career-high ten over 5 1/3's innings. I think this sets up as a natural letdown spot for Detroit after it suffered its first loss in over a week; conversely, the Indians come in filled with confidence and vengeance on their minds. While the outright win is obviously not out of the question, in a contest which could be decided late or in extras, I'll gladly lay the price for the runs; play on DETROIT on the RUN LINE.