Sports Picks looks at a big MLB Betting matchup on Tuesday, when the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers open a three-game set at Dodger Stadium.

This series has a lot of implications for the Wild Card hopes of the Giants, who will try to sneak into the MLB Playoffs to defend the World Series title they captured last season.

MLB Odds for the opener had the Dodgers opening as a -140 moneyline favorite and the Giants a +120 underdog, but Los Angeles has been bet down to -120 and San Francisco up to +115.

MLB Picks bettors know the main reasons for the line movement are the importance of this game to the Giants’ Wild Card chances, and the fact they are one of the hottest teams in Major League Baseball, winning eight straight.

Going into action Monday, the Giants were four games back of the Atlanta Braves in the National League Wild Card race, and just a half-game back of the second-place St. Louis Cardinals.

And in the head-to-head series, San Francisco has won seven of the 11 meetings with the Dodgers this season.

But perhaps the biggest story is the pitching duel for the opener, which will feature Clayton Kershaw for the Dodgers against Tim Lincecum of the Giants. Kershaw, who has won all three starts against San Francisco this season, is 19-5 with a 2.31 ERA. Lincecum is 13-12 with a 2.59 ERA.

The Giants (83-70) are coming off a four-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies, while the Dodgers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-1 in their four-game set.

Sports Picks previews the Atlanta Braves and the New York Mets clashing in the closing game of a three-game series Sunday at Citi Field (1:10 pm ET, TBS).

Sports Odds have Atlanta as a -130 moneyline favorite, New York a +110 underdog, and the over/under total at 7.5.

The Braves will have Jair Jurrjens on the mound. The righthander is 12-4 with a 2.63 ERA and last started Monday, going five innings in a 5-3 loss against the Washington Nationals. The Mets will counter with Dillon Gee, who is 10-3 with a 3.50 ERA. The righthander last pitched July 29, when he went seven innings in an 8-5 win over the Nationals.

Atlanta (65-48 SU) is 8.5 behind the first-place Philadelphia Phillies in the NL East division, and is 6-4 SU in its past 10 games and had won two straight heading into the second game of the series.

New York is (55-56 SU) struggling with five straight losses going into the second game, after winning straight. The Mets are 17.5 games back of the Phillies.

Atlanta won the series opener by a 4-1 score on Friday. The Braves covered as a +105 road underdog and the score stayed under the total of 7.5. The division rivals have met in three series previously this season, and the Mets have won four of the past six meetings.

Earlier this week, Atlanta lost a three-game series against the Nationals, while New York lost two games against the Florida Marlins.

Sports Picks previews AL division leaders the Texas Rangers and the Detroit Tigers squaring off in the opener of a three-game set Tuesday at Comerica Park (7:05 pm ET, FOX).

MLB Betting has the Tigers as a -120 moneyline favorite, the Rangers as a +100 underdog and the over/under total at 8.5.

The Rangers will give the ball to Colby Lewis, who is 10-8 with a 4.00 ERA. The righthander last pitched Wednesday against the Minnesota Twins, going six and two-thirds innings in a 7-2 setback. The Tigers will counter with Max Scherzer. The righthander is 11-6 with a 4.28 and last started July 27, going six innings in a 2-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox.

Texas (61-48 SU) is in first place in the AL West division. The Rangers lead the second-place Los Angeles Angels by two games and are 5-5 SU in their past 10 games. Detroit (57-51 SU) is on top of the AL Central and has a 2.5-game lead over the second-place Cleveland Indians. The Tigers are 5-5 SU in their past 10 games.

The Rangers and Tigers have already met twice this season, with the Tigers winning four of the six meetings.

The Rangers lost a three-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays on the weekend, dropping the rubber match 7-3 on Sunday. The Blue Jays won as a -105 home favorite. The Tigers split a four-game series against the Angels. Detroit won the closing game 3-2 on Sunday, as a -140 home favorite.

Sports Picks sets up the finale of a three-game set between NL Central division rivals the Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday at Busch Stadium (8:05 pm ET, ESPN).

MLB Odds have the Cardinals as a -150 moneyline favorite, the Cubs as a +130 underdog, and the over/under total at 8.5.

The Cubs will give the ball to Ryan Dempster, who is 7-8 with a 4.98 ERA. The righthander last started on Tuesday July 26, going six innings in a 3-2 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers. The Cardinals will counter with righthander Jake Westbrook. He has a 4.86 ERA and is 9-4 this season. He last started Tuesday, going six innings in a 3-1 win over the Astros.

The teams have already met twice this season, with St. Louis winning the first series 2-1 from May 10 to 12 and sweeping the second June 3 to 5. The Cardinals won the opener of this series on Friday in a 9-2 rout, covering as a -135 home favorite. The score went over the over/under total of 7.5.

Chicago (42-64 SU) is in fourth place in the NL Central division, 15.5 games back of the first-place Milwaukee Brewers. The Cubs had lost four straight heading into the second game of the series Saturday. Chicago is 4-6 SU in its past 10 games.

St. Louis (56-50 SU) is second place in the division and is 1.5 games back of the Brewers. The Cardinals are 6-4 SU in their past 10 games.

MLB Picks preview the second game of a three-game set between the San Francisco Giants and the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday at Great American Ball Park (7:10 pm ET, FOX).

MLB Odds have the Reds as a -125 favorite and the over/under total at 8.5.

The Giants will give the ball to Madison Bumgarner, who is 6-9 with a 3.56 ERA. The lefthander last pitched July 24, going seven and two-third innings in a 2-1 win over the Milwaukee Brewers. The Reds will counter with righthander Mike Leake, who is 8-5 with a 4.03 ERA and last started July 25, when he went six and one-third innings in a 4-2 loss to the New York Mets.

San Francisco (61-44 SU) is first in the NL West division, ahead of the second place Arizona Diamondbacks by four games. The Giants are 7-3 SU in their past 10 games and had won two straight games going into the opener of the series against the Reds Friday.

Cincinnati (50-55 SU) is in a bad slump, going in 3-7 SU in its past 10 games and  losing four straight heading into the opener Friday. The Reds are in fourth place in the NL Central division, 6.5 games behind the first-place Brewers.

The teams met once earlier this season when the teams split a four-game series June 9 to 12. Three of the past four meetings have stayed under the over/under total.

San Francisco is coming off a 2-1 series win over the Philadelphia Phillies while Cincinnati finished a four-game set against the Mets on Thursday, getting swept and outscored 30-19.

Sports Picks previews the opening of a three-game set as the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago White Sox clash on Friday at U.S. Cellular Field (8:10 pm ET, MLB).

MLB Odds have this matchup as a -110 pick’em and the over/under total at 9.5.

The Red Sox will start Tim Wakefield, who is 6-3 with a 5.22 ERA. The righthander last started Sunday against the Seattle Mariners, when he went six innings in a 12-8 win. The White Sox will counter with Gavin Floyd. The righthander is 8-8 with a 4.07 ERA and last started July 22 against the Cleveland Indians, when he went eight innings in a 3-0 win.

Boston (64-38 SU) leads the AL East division by three games over the second place New York Yankees. The Red Sox have the best record in the American League and are 8-2 SU in their past 10 games.

Chicago (51-52 SU) is in third place in the AL Central division, and is 6-4 SU in its past 10 games. The White Sox are 3.5 games behind the first-place Detroit Tigers.

Chicago has dominated the Red Sox in the past 10 head-to-head meetings at 9-1 SU. The teams met once previously this year when the White Sox swept a three-game series May 30 to June 1.

The Red Sox are coming off a split of a four-game series against the Kansas City Royals, losing the finale 4-3 on Thursday, while the White Sox won a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers.

MLB Picks previews the opener of a four-game series  between the Los Angeles Angels and the Detroit Tigers on Thursday at Comerica Park (1:05 pm ET, FOX).

MLB Odds have the Tigers as a -130 moneyline favorite and the over/under total at 9.

Los Angeles will give the ball to Joel Pineiro, who is 5-5 with a 4.61 ERA this season. The righthander last pitched on Saturday against the Baltimore Orioles. He lasted five and two-third innings in a 3-2 loss. Detroit will counter with righthander Brad Penny. He is 7-7 with a 4.51 ERA and last started Saturday, going seven innings in a 4-1 loss against the Minnesota Twins.

The Angels and Tigers are at or near the top of their respective divisions.

Los Angeles (56-48 SU) is second in the AL West, three games back of the Texas Rangers, and is 5-5 SU in its past 10 games.

Detroit (55-48 SU) is on top of the AL Central division and has a two-game lead over the second-place Cleveland Indians. The Tigers are 6-4 SU in their past 10.

The teams have met in one series already this season, from July 4 to 6. The Angels won the series 2-1 at home. But the Tigers have the edge in the past 10 head-to-head meetings, going 6-4 SU.

The Angels faced Cleveland in the rubber match of a three-game set on Wednesday, while Detroit closed out a three-game series against the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday.

Sports Betting previews a rematch of last season’s National League Championship Series when the San Francisco Giants and the Philadelphia Phillies meet in the second game of a three-game set on Wednesday at Citizens Bank Park (7:05 pm ET, ESPN).

The Giants will give the ball to Barry Zito, who is struggling this season at 3-2 with a 4.78 ERA. The southpaw last pitched on July 16, when he went just three and two-thirds innings in an 11-3 loss against the San Diego Padres. The Phillies will counter with Cole Hamels. The lefty is 12-5 with a 2.62 ERA and last started on Friday, going eight innings in a 3-1 win over the Padres.

San Francisco (59-43 SU) is on top of the NL West division, and leads the Arizona Diamondbacks by four games. The Giants are 7-3 SU in their past 10 games. Philadelphia (64-37 SU) is in first place in the NL East, six games ahead of the Atlanta Braves, and have the best record in the majors. The Phillies are 7-3 SU in their past 10 games.

When the Giants and Phillies last met, a trip to the 2010 World Series was on the line. The Giants won the NLCS in six games en route to beating the Texas Rangers in the Fall Classic.

Prior to the opener of this series on Tuesday, the Giants won a three-game set against the Milwaukee Brewers. The Phillies won a four-game set against the Padres.

Sports Picks previews the second game of a three-game set between the Seattle Mariners and the New York Yankees on Tuesday at Yankee Stadium (7:05 pm ET, FOX).

MLB Odds have the Yankees as a huge, -320 moneyline favorite, the Mariners a +260 underdog and the over/under total at 8.

The Mariners will give the ball to Doug Fister, who is 3-11 SU with a 3.30 ERA. The righthander’s last started July 21 when he went six innings in a 7-5 loss against the Toronto Blue Jays. The Yankees will counter with southpaw CC Sabathia, who is 14-5 with a 2.62 ERA. Sabathia’s last start was Thursday against the Tampa Bay Rays, when he went eight innings in a 2-1 loss.

Seattle is winless in its last 15 games – the longest losing streak in franchise history. It is also the longest losing streak in Major League Baseball since the Kansas City Royals lost 19 straight in 2005.

The Mariners (43-58 SU) have fallen 14.5 games back of the first place Texas Rangers in the AL West division. The Yankees (59-40 SU) are second in the AL East, three games back of the first-place Boston Red Sox.

New York has won five of the past nine head-to-head meetings, but the Mariners won a three-game series in the teams’ first meeting this season May 27 to May 29.

Seattle was swept in a three-game series against the Red Sox, and New York is coming off a series win against the Oakland A’s.

MLB Picks previews the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Atlanta Braves opening a four-game set on Monday at Turner Field (7:10 pm ET, ESPN).

The Pirates will have James McDonald on the mound. The righthander is 6-4 and has a 4.15 ERA and got his last start July 19, when he went six and one-third innings in a 1-0 win over the Cincinnati Reds. The Braves will start Tim Hudson, who is 9-6 with a 3.39 ERA. The righthander last pitched July 20, going seven innings in a 3-2 loss against the Colorado Rockies.

The Pirates (51-47 SU) are in second place in the NL Central division, one game back of the first-place Milwaukee Brewers and the St. Louis Cardinals. Pittsburgh has been struggling recently, however, going 5-5 SU in its past 10 games and losing three straight.

The Braves (59-42 SU) are in second place in the NL East, and were five games behind the first place Philadelphia Phillies heading into action Sunday. Atlanta is 5-5 SU in its past 10 games.

The teams have met in one series already this season. The Pirates and Braves clashed in a short series May 24-25, with Atlanta sweeping the two-game series. The Braves have had the edge in the head-to-head series, winning seven of the past 10 meetings.

Pittsburgh dropped the first two matchups of a three-game set against the St. Louis Cardinals this weekend. Atlanta split the first two games of a three-game series against the Cincinnati Reds on the weekend.

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