Milwaukee gets set for a two-game quickie in Texas as their miserable season continues to wind down. The Rangers look to take advantage of the lowly Brew Crew amidst an intense divisional race of their own. Marco Estrada matches up with Alexi Ogando – enough to make the Rangers large -210 favorites at home with a total of 9.0.
Marco Estrada came off of the disabled list in his last start and was brilliant for Milwaukee, allowing just one hit over five innings against the reigning World Series champs. Don’t expect Estrada to shut down the Rangers but this definitely is a spot where the market undervalues Estrada capability of for a couple reasons.
I believe in Estrada’s stuff as a pitcher. A few very bad outings have ballooned his numbers. Even with those factored in, his 1.28 WHIP certainly isn’t too shabby. Estrada has pitched very well away from home all season – much, much better than at home where his ERA is more than double what it is on the road. Growing up in California and attending ‘The Beach’ (LBSU) should alleviate much concern about Arlington’s August heat. Throw in that no one on Texas has seen Estrada more than four times (Soto) and only two others have seen him at all (Berkman, Soto) and I believe this amounts to a decent spot to back Marco. With the Rangers’ offense not as potent as it’s been over the last few seasons – especially now without Nelson Cruz – and the Milwaukee bullpen actually doing an okay job as of late, the Brewers could contain Texas in this one.
Alexi Ogando should be licking his chops in anticipation of getting one of the poorer lineups inside his home park where he pitches very effectively. With the Ryan Braun saga holding a dark cloud over Milwaukee’s season the successes of young Carlos Gomez and Jean Segura have gone relatively unnoticed. That’s also just about the only offense Milwaukee features. You have to question how well Milwaukee will come out swinging the bats playing on the road to begin a quick two-gamer in Texas. Considering Texas carries a must-win mentality into just about all the rest of its regular season games and Milwaukee is long out of the NL Central, I look for Texas to shut down a weak lineup. With a 2.76 ERA at home and having never faced the Milwaukee lineup – or any of it’s contents – in his career, Ogando looks to be in a position of power here. Expect dominance for at least five innings for Alexi.
Probably can see where this pick is going. I like Ogando to shut down the Brewers to the tune of three or less and I have the Texas total sitting right around 4.5. The combination is enough to fire on a straight-up under play with no extra juice.
Free Pick: Milwaukee/Texas Under 9