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NFL Gambling Preview: Arizona Cardinals at Chicago Bears

09.15.2015     01:26 PM     Alex Smith     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Alex Smith blog entry.
Arizona at Chicago
Sunday, 10 am PT - FOX
CRIS Opener:
Arizona -2 O/U 45
CRIS Current: Arizona -2 O/U 45
Recommendation: Arizona

The Chicago Bears opened up the year with a tough 31-23 loss to Green Bay. Running back Matt Forte was solid with 141 rushing yards and a touchdown and while Chicago's defense has shown some improvement from last season's horrific campaign, there are still some glaring issues. The Bears allowed 6.1 yards per play with some terrible displays of missed tackling and poor reading of rushing routes against the Packers. Things won't be any easier this week with Arizona. The Cards pulled away from New Orleans with two late touchdowns to earn the 31-19 victory. Arizona's tough defense held a very good Saints offense to four field goals and only 54 yards on the ground. Offensively, the Cardinals averaged 7.5 yards per play and were a perfect 3-for-3 inside the red zone.

The Bears are going to have to diversify their offense and take more chances when nearing the red zone. They seemed too reliant on short passes and screens last game and while Arizona has two Read more

Tags: NFL Chicago Bears Airzona Cardinals Alex B. Smith

NFL Gambling: Dolphins and Cardinals top SuperContest picks for Week 1

09.13.2015     05:20 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
Below are the top consensus plays for Week 1 of the NFL SuperContest.

1. Miami -3.5 at Washington
2. Arizona -2.5 vs. New Orleans
3. St. Louis +4 vs. Seattle
4. NY Jets -3.5 vs. Cleveland
5. Green Bay -7 at Chicago

Least Picked Sunday Side: Cleveland +3.5 at NY Jets

Tags: NFL

MLB Handicapper Free Play: St. Louis Cardinals at Arizona Diamondbacks

08.24.2015     11:02 AM     Rob Veno     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Rob Veno blog entry.
St. Louis (Lynn) at Arizona (Ray) +110 O/U 7.5
Recommendation: Arizona

Cardinals’ starter Lance Lynn has recently lost command of the strike zone walking 15 batters in his last five starts which spans 25.1 IP. That number is a bit alarming since he had only walked 34 in his first 18 starts (109.1 IP) and it has shown up in the Cards’ 2-3 record over his last five outings. While Arizona has a few impatient bats in their lineup (most notably leadoff hitter Ender Inciarte), they show enough plate discipline overall and should enter with a game plan to force Lynn into the strike zone. Offensively, the Diamondbacks have been rolling since the break recording a .274 team BA, .355 OBP, and .786 OPS and in their 16 home games during that stretch they’ve been even better, .290/.376/.832. They did face Lynn here at Chase Field earlier this season and got 6 hits and 4 walks off him in six innings of an eventual 4-3 loss. For St. Louis, yesterday’s breakout 10-run performance at San Diego was much needed since their injury riddled offense has been sputtering this month hitting just .237 with a .312 OBP. Their hitting splits show Read more

Tags: MLB St. Louis Cardinals Arizona Diamondbacks Rob Veno

MLB Handicapping: St. Louis Cardinals continue to win, defy logic

08.14.2015     07:19 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
Interesting article courtesy of Grantland on the St. Louis Cardinals and their continued dominance. Some of their achievements (73-41, +24 units) make sense statistically. For example, the Cards' Pythagorean W-L (72-42) is right in line with their over record. Outscore your opponents by a run per game and you're going to post a really good record. But how they got that +1.0 run differential is what the article questions. For example, the pitching staff is on pace to post the best left-on-base percentage of all-time (81.0%). Their current ERA (2.63) is the best we've seen since 1972 which leads us to ERA-FIP differential. The Royals have the second biggest mark in the league (3.61 ERA/3.93 FIP = -0.31 diff) whereas the Cardinals own an eye-popping -0.69 diff. Basically, the pitching staff is good but no different than a lot of other "good" staffs with the exception of not letting dudes score when they get on base. There are other factors as well that appear to straddle the line between skill (the "Cardinal way") and luck (probably not sustainable). Either Read more

Tags: MLB St. Louis Cardinals

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: How to bet NFL Season O/U Wins Part II

08.10.2015     10:17 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Last week in this space, I looked back at last year’s final NFL standings and discussed the impact of strength of schedule models on those results.  I differentiated between mainstream widely available numbers for the 2014 strength of schedule (simply adding up wins and losses for every opponent) and my own formula, relying on power rating numbers from the week that the game was played. 

The goal was simple -- getting more accurate numbers to properly assess last year’s results in strength of schedule context as a starting point for 2015.

We’re done with last year now. This week, I’ll focus on the 2015 NFL strength of schedule as they relate to season win totals.  Once again, my goal is to differentiate between the mainstream numbers and the meaningful ones.

Google ‘2015 NFL Strength of Schedule’ and you’ll find countless charts exactly like this one.
1. Pittsburgh Steelers (.579)
2. Cincinnati Bengals (.563)
3. Read more

Tags: NFL Teddy Covers Las Vegas

MLB Handicapper Free Play: St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago White Sox

07.22.2015     08:24 AM     Andrew Lange     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Andrew Lange blog entry.
St. Louis (Lynn) -130 at Chicago (Danks) O/U 8
Recommendation: Under

Chicago's John Danks has pitched a little better than his ERA (4.98) with a LOB% of 65.4% and BABIP of .316. His K rate (6.27) is as high as it's been since 2011 and if you eliminate two starts vs. powerful Toronto (9.1 IP, 12 ERs), Danks' ERA drops half a run. He takes a step down in class tonight by facing the light hitting St. Louis Cardinals. The Cards rank 27th in OPS and 28th in SLG in MLB vs. lefties this season. Note also that in two starts vs. the NL, Danks allowed only four runs in 14 innings. Lance Lynn has been a model of consistency having allowed two or fewer runs in 13 of 17 starts. He faces a White Sox lineup that sports the lowest OPS (.653) is MLB. Adding to the potential for limited offense is umpire Mark Ripperger who over the last two seasons has produced 59% unders and this year sports the lowest walk rate in the league (3.7 per 9) and less than 7 runs per game despite calling only three true NL vs. NL games (one was in Coors Field and produced only eight runs). With plenty of 8's still available, we'll come in with a play on the under.

Tags: MLB St. Louis Cardinals Chicago White Sox Andrew Lange

MLB Handicapper Free Play: St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs

07.07.2015     08:31 AM     Drew Martin     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Drew Martin blog entry.
St. Louis (Lyons) at Chicago (Arrieta) -145 O/U 6.5
Recommendation: Chicago

The St. Louis Cardinals boast the best record (54-28) in MLB and look to add to it this afternoon at Wrigley Field. But doing so won’t be easy as the light hitting Cards face one of the top arms in the National League. Jake Arrieta has faced St. Louis three times this season as he held its lineup to a .208 batting average and five total earned runs. He also fanned seven in each of those three outings. Arrieta is having a career year with a 2.80 ERA, 2.72 xFIP, and sparkling 110-23 K-to-BB ratio. He should be good to go against a Cardinals lineup that grades out as NL-average. St. Louis will counter with soft tossing lefty Tyler Lyons who they just called up from Triple-A Memphis. Lyons has a 5.09 ERA in 23 innings pitched at the big league level this year; a far cry from the 3.10 ERA he posted in Memphis. He’s a good matchup for the Cubs who sport the third highest OPS in the National League vs. lefties this year at .732.  Chicago got to Lyons for four runs (three earned) in 4.1 IP back in early May. Pitching mismatch puts us on the home team at the moderate Read more

Tags: MLB St. Louis Cardinals Chicago Cubs Drew Martin

MLB Betting News: Phillies call up walk-prone starter vs. Cardinals

06.19.2015     09:35 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
Considering the current state of the Phillies' rotation, being called up in mid-June is probably a good indication you're a "fringe" arm. With Cole Hamels out with a bum hamstring, the Phils called up Phillippe Aumont who sports some pretty crazy stats. To start, Aumont is 6-7, grew up in Quebec, was drafted in the first round back in 2007 (!) and has thrown only 39.2 innings at the big league level. Now let's get to the really interesting part. Aumont has a small issue with control and by small we mean really big. In nearly 500 IP of work in the minors, his BB per 9 rate is 5.6! And of those 39.2 innings in the bigs, he issues 27 free passes. On a positive note, since turning pro, he's averaged over a strikeout per inning. Aumont is a +180 home underdog vs. St. Louis for tonight.

"Walks happen," Aumont said, "happened my whole life. They are going to keep happening. I'm not going to lose sleep over it, but I'm looking to improve on that."

Tags: MLB Philadelphia Phillies

MLB Handicapper Free Play: St. Louis Cardinals at Los Angeles Dodgers

06.05.2015     09:13 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
St. Louis (Martinez) +105 at Los Angeles (Anderson) O/U 7
Recommendation: St. Louis

The Dodgers are an injury riddled mess right now.  Key bats like Yasiel Puig, Carl Crawford and Scott Van Slyke  are on the DL, while hot hitting second baseman Howie Kendrick is a question mark at best tonight, suffering from a knee injury that could put him on the DL as well.  The pitching staff is banged up too with key bullpen arms Paco Rodriguez and Pedro Baez both languishing on the DL.

LA will be playing their ninth game in the last eight days while flying back and forth across the country.  They’ve gone 9-13 in their last 22 games following a 22-10 start to the campaign.  It’s been even worse against opponents with winning records during that span, with LA sporting a 3-10 mark in their last 13 against above .500 foes.

St. Louis has suffered a handful of key injuries as well; most notably staff ace Adam Wainwright and key left handed bat Matt Adams.  But the Cards just keep winning; 8-2 in their last ten after last night’s blowout victory on this field.   Tonight’s starter, Read more

Tags: MLB St. Louis Cardinals Los Angeles Dodgers Teddy Covers

MLB Handicapping: Brewers' pitchers up against in following marathon win

06.01.2015     08:29 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
It'll be interesting to see how Milwaukee's pitching staff gets through tonight's game vs. St. Louis. Yesterday, the Brewers got past the Diamondbacks in 17 innings. For starters, catcher Martin Maldonado worked the entire game. It's reasonable to think he may get tonight off. If he doesn't play, Juan Centeno will get the call. In seven games (46 IP) this season, Milwaukee's pitchers own a 7.83 ERA with Centeno behind the dish. And the bullpen might be a little thin tonight's as well after eight relief pitchers saw action. Matt Garza chewed up five innings but seven others tossed following 8.2 innings worth of work the previous two days. Also note that starter Mike Fiers was forced to throw on short rest in his last start. He's now on regular rest but has completed six innings in only two of his 10 starts this season. Milwaukee is a +140 underdog vs. the Cardinals.

Tags: MLB Milwaukee Brewers St. Louis Cardinals


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