MLB betting: New York Mets ride pitching wave back into playoff contention

Updated: September 16, 2016

Today’s featured MLB betting preview: Minnesota Twins (55-92, 26-46 away) @ New York Mets (77-69, 38-33 home), Citi Field, New York, NY; Saturday, September 17, 9.10am (AET) – starting pitchers: Jose Berrios (MIN, 2-6, 9.27 ERA); Bartolo Colon (NYM, 13-7, 3.27 ERA)



The New York Mets didn’t have to hit a ball or throw a pitch yesterday in order to take sole possession of the second wild card in the National League. Tonight, the Mets will start taking playoff destiny into their own hands when the Minnesota Twins visit for a three-game interleague series at Citi Field. New York was off Thursday following a 1-0 loss to the Washington Nationals on Wednesday while the Twins (55-92) beat the Detroit Tigers, 5-1, at Comerica Park in an early game yesterday. While the Twins are hoping to avoid 100 losses, the Mets will enter Friday with a one-game lead over the St. Louis Cardinals (76-70) in the race for the NL’s second wild-card spot.

That came by virtue of the Cardinals’ 6-2 loss last night to the top wild card, the San Francisco Giants (78-68). The Mets, the defending NL champions, appeared finished four weeks ago, when an 8-1 loss to the Giants dropped them to 60-62 and into fifth place in the wild-card race, 5.5 games behind the second wild card Cardinals. But the Mets have the best record in baseball (17-7) since August 19 and will play their final 16 games against a quartet of teams – the Twins, Atlanta Braves, Philadelphia Phillies and Miami Marlins – that enter today a combined 88 games under .500.



The Mets’ form of the past month thanks largely to strong pitching from three unlikely contributors – rookies Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman as well as veteran Bartolo Colon (pictured above). That trio are a combined 9-1 with a 2.58 ERA in 14 games (13 starts) during New York’s run. Colon, the oldest player in baseball at age 43, is scheduled to start tonight while Lugo is expected to pitch tomorrow. Colon continued his strong stretch by giving up three runs on four hits over six innings in a no-decision versus Atlanta to stretch his unbeaten streak to five starts. It was the third successive quality start for Colon.

He hastossed six scoreless innings to beat Cincinnati in his previous turn and has allowed more than three earned runs only once in his past eight outings. Twins first baseman Joe Mauer is 3-for-4 against Colon. The Twins, meanwhile, will look to continue playing spoiler as they try to avoid the franchise’s first 100-loss season since 1982. They just split a four-game series with the AL wild card-contending Tigers. Rookie right-hander Jose Berrios, who has a 9.27 ERA in his first 11 big league starts, is scheduled to oppose Colon. Berrios was solid in his first start after his recall from the minors, beating Cleveland with six innings of three-run ball.



Confirmed betting (card finalised)

Minnesota Twins @ New York Mets -1.5 (one unit @ $2.29)
Washington Nationals -1.5 @ Atlanta Braves (one unit @ $1.81)
Miami Marlins WIN @ Philadelphia Phillies (one unit @ $1.74)
San Diego Padres @ Colorado Rockies +12.5 (one unit @ $1.98)
Detroit Tigers @ Cleveland Indians -1.5 (one unit @ $2.18)
Houston Astros @ Seattle Mariners WIN (one unit @ $1.80
Toronto Blue Jays @ Los Angeles Angels +9 (one unit @ $1.93)


Today’s other games

Milwaukee Brewers @ Chicago Cubs
Tampa Bay Rays @ Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees @ Boston Red Sox
Pittsburgh Pirates @ Cincinnati Reds
Oakland Athletics @ Texas Rangers
Chicago White Sox @ Kansas City Royals
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Arizona Diamondbacks
St. Louis Cardinals @ San Francisco Giants


Yesterday’s results: 2-0-3, -1.05 units; overall record: 389-23-291, +84.42 units

St. Louis Cardinals @ San Francisco Giants -7 (one unit @ $1.96) LOSE (2-6)
New York Yankees WIN @ Boston Red Sox (one unit @ $2.12) LOSE (5-7)
Oakland Athletics @ Kansas City Royals +9 (one unit @ $2.07) WIN (14-5)
Tampa Bay Rays @ Baltimore Orioles WIN (one unit @ $1.84) LOSE (7-6)
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Arizona Diamondbacks +9.5 (one unit @ $1.88) WIN (3-7)

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to William Hill (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Bets void if listed pitchers do not start. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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