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With the 2019 MLB All-Star Game over and done with, baseball on a grand scale returns Friday, July 12th. Among the many games taking place, the Seattle Mariners will start a series with their AL West rivals, the Los Angeles Angels. First pitch for Game 1 is set for 10:07 P.M ET.
M’s Looking to Turn it Around
The Seattle Mariners are a mess, straight up. Not in the way the Baltimore Orioles are a mess, but they’re a mess nonetheless. They started the season 13-2, the best record in baseball at the time, then lost it all during April, May, and Most of June. Before winning six of seven in late June, the Mariners had gone 18-44 since their hot start. Prior to the break, they hit another skid, losing eight of 10 to finish the first half with a 39-55 record. Certainly, when the team was sitting atop the league in early April, they didn’t think they’d be here.
And by here, the Mariners have pretty much thrown the towel in already, trading their best hitter, Edwin Encarnacion, to the Yankees as soon as things hit the fan. For the second half, however, they’ll put their best nine out there and hope for the best. Without Encarnacion, it’s not as potent as it once appeared, but Tim Beckham is heating up, homering three times in his last six games, and catcher Omar Narvaez continues his breakout season in the batter’s box. Narvaez has a .294 batting average this year (.368 BA in July) to go along with 14 home runs (3 HR in July).
Others, however, have struggled as of late. The starting left-side of their infield (Kyle Seager and J.P Crawford) is hitting a combined 4-for-41 so far this month.
Halos Still Reeling From Tragedy
It’s hard to worry about wins and losses when you’re dealing with the death of a teammate, but the Angels fell below .500 right before the All-Star break and now sit at 45-46. That said, I’m sure they couldn’t wait for the break so they could grieve a little easier. A fresh start in the second half could be exactly what they need. From a playoff outlook, they’re 6.5 games out of the American League Wild Card race. Playing in front of their hometown fans should help the cause, too. They’re playing .500-plus ball at home so far this year, thanks in large part to the performances by All-Stars Mike Trout and Tommy La Stella.
Combined, the two have 25 home runs and 53 RBI on their home turf, in addition to a .284 combined batting average. Shohei Ohtani, it should be noted, is also hitting .308 at home with eight homers. Taylor Cole will have the pitching duties, though it’s mostly in an “opener” role. Cole started a game earlier this year, yet by the time the second inning rolled around, he had already turned the ball over. Nevertheless, Cole has a 4.58 ERA this year in 19.2 innings. Before the break, the Angels lost their starting catcher, Jonathan Lucroy, in a collision at the plate. It’s unclear when he’ll return.
Los Angeles is:
- 0-3 in their last 3 home games.
- 1-3 in their last 4 games overall.
- 2-5 in their last 7 home games vs. Seattle.
- 5-2 in their last 7 road games vs. LAA.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Awesome value here with Seattle. The Angels, understandably, ended the first half flat. It’s possible they’re closer to normal now but definitely not at -170! It’s an absolute no-brainer to take the M’s, based solely on the line. Plus, Mike Leake is coming off an absolute gem in his last outing vs. St. Louis (7 IP, 0 ER, 7 K) and the M’s have won five of seven at LAA.
Prediction: Seattle Mariners +140
Full-Game Total Pick
Over the course of their last nine meetings, the under has only come through twice. In baseball, these things even out over time so I reckon it’s high time the Mariners and Angels stay below the posted total. Ten runs is a lot, anyhow, especially when you’re unsure of one team’s condition.
Prediction: Under 10