Texas Rangers vs New York Yankees (Saturday 10:05am AEST)
The Texas Rangers are still within striking distance of the American League wild card, but they are the $2.25 outsiders in the first of three crucial weekend games against the New York Yankees ($1.65) at Globe Life Park in Arlington.
Martin Perez will be the starting pitcher for the Rangers, and he has been outstanding in the last month. Perez has won his last six starts, and has allowed four or more runs on just one occasion. He has also been durable in his last six outings, pitching at least six innings each time. Perez has won his last three starts at home.
Masahiro Tanaka will take the mound for the Yankees, and his past six starts have been almost as good as Perez's. Tanaka has gone 4-1 since July 29, conceding just nine runs in those six games. In his last three starts, Tanaka has demonstrated his strength; pitching seven innings on each occasion.
This is an extremely tough game to tip. Both pitchers are in tremendous form, so the current betting seems a little too far apart considering that Martin Perez has won his last six starts for Texas. Even though Masahiro Tanaka has pitched well recently for the Yankees, the Rangers appear value in this clash at home.
Arizona Diamondbacks vs San Diego Padres (Saturday 11:40am AEST)
The Arizona Diamondbacks are one of the hottest teams in Major League Baseball with a current 13-game winning streak, and they will look to stretch that rich vein of form even further as $1.37 favourites against the San Diego Padres ($3.10) in the first clash of a three-game series at Chase Field.
Patrick Corbin takes the mound for the Diamondbacks having won his last five starts. Since August 13, Corbin has not allowed an earned run in three of his past five outings, and in the other two starts, he conceded one run in each game; resulting in his earned run average dropping from 4.76 per game to 3.83.
Jordan Lyles will be the starting pitcher for the Padres, after joining San Diego on September 3. Following his move from the Colorado Rockies, Lyles gave up two earned runs in just over four innings at home to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Before arriving in San Diego, Lyles was mainly used as a relief pitcher out of the Rockies bullpen.
The Diamondbacks have been terrific in the last three weeks, highlighted by six wins (three home, then three away) against the Los Angeles Dodgers; the team with the best record in Major League Baseball. Behind the formidable pitching of Patrick Corbin, Arizona should comfortably extend their winning streak to 14 games.