San Francisco Giants vs. San Diego Padres April 18 Free Pick


The Giants certainly feel good about the way they’re playing early on in the season after taking two of three from the LA Dodgers for the second series of the year. There were just 11 runs scored by both sides in 29 innings over the three-game series and all three games were decided by one run. Now, San Francisco hopes to continue the success against a lesser divisional rival when it goes to San Diego to face the Padres the first time this season. San Diego isn’t a poor team and will run Tyson Ross out for game one, where the home side is a small -120 favorite. Matt Cain opposes Ross. The pitcher’s duel means that the total for tonight is just 6.5 runs.

Free Pick

Tyson Ross showed the ability to be a pretty effective pitcher in a pretty large portion of last season. In 125 innings as a 25-year-old, Ross allowed only 100 hits and even walked just 44. But this season is his first as a mainstay in the rotation and it’s been an interesting start to the year for Ross. He’s allowed just six earned runs in 16 innings but has surrendered plenty of base runners thus far. You can point to control issues for that. Ross has already walked 10, which will hurt him against a San Francisco team full of professional and polished hitters. And while no Giant has logged double-digit at-bats against Matt-CainRoss in his career, just about everyone has seen him five, six, seven times. And that only means the mystery lessens as the scouting reports sharpen. Don’t expect San Fran to light Ross up, but a few runs in six innings is a reasonable expectation.

And by taking the Giants I’m betting on Matt Cain to pitch very well. While it hasn’t been quite as bad as last year, Cain’s start to 2014 hasn’t been stellar. The ace is still seeking his first win after an 0-2 start despite pitching six and seven innings in his last two starts, respectively. The Giants failed to get him any run support his last time out and Cain lost 1-0 to Colorado. Pitching in a ballpark similar to AT&T Stadium against a team he knows well should do Cain well and I expect him to go six or seven innings en route to his first win of the season. It doesn’t hurt that he’s available at even money. This is a good coin flip to take if you’re looking for value.

Free Pick: San Francisco +100

2014 YTD: 7-0 +7.00

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