Dave’s Free Play, Saturday 7/20/13

  • July 20, 2013

Only 15 days till the football season kicks off! The Dolphins and Cowboys get things rolling on August 4, and that’s the start of a six-month stretch of what amounts to almost non-stop gridiron action.

The onset of the exhibition games always brings up the argument over the merits of wagering on these meaningless games. Make no mistake, that’s the correct description and I don’t think there’s any debate on that count. But the query that’s always in play, about how anyone can risk money on games that don’t count, is also one where I don’t see any debate. Simply stated, the answer is that there’s nothing not worth betting on if you can obtain an edge.

I’ve always really liked the NFL pre-season. That’s strictly from a betting standpoint, as often the games themselves are unwatchable. But it’s also the only time of the football season that coaches will literally give away their game plans and intentions on occasion, and that’s clearly an advantage situation for any sharp bettor.

My best advice for handling the pre-season is to be extremely selective. Wait for the spots where the good info is provided. Pay very close attention to the scheduled rotations for each team. Look for teams with key positional battles taking place, look for the occasional hookup where one team might actually have a reason to try and win the game. Coaching tendencies are very much in play during the exhibitions as well.

If you’re patient and disciplined, there are going to be some good spots in the pre-season that are absolutely worth playing. That’s the way it has always been, and that’s the end of the argument.

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At least two games on my Saturday MLB card, and depending on lineup info and some other factors I’ll consider, it could end up being a big card. Get the entire day’s action by clicking on the “buy now” tab, where you can also purchase one week of my plays.

The early football rates are in effect now, and there’s still loads of baseball remaining. To get the breakdown of how my longer term packages work, just drop me a line at Cokin@cox.net.

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07/20 04:10 PM  MLB   (921) CLEVELAND INDIANS (922) MINNESOTA TWINS

Take: (921) CLEVELAND INDIANS

Reason: Cory Kluber could well be a regression candidate as his innings pile up. But for now there’s not a whole lot not to like about the Indians breakout righty. Kluber fits the profile of the pitchers I will trust with my money. He throws strikes and makes you beat him, as opposed to being one of those nibblers who often beats himself.

Kluber draws an opponent he should be able to outpitch. Kevin Correia is the quintessential back of the rotation type. He can eat up some innings, but is in reality a very mediocre major league starter. Correia was a big early season surprise but it’s certainly no shock that he has gotten back to his norm.

The Indians have been a very pleasant surprise, but they got out of the post-break gate on the wrong foot last night. The Tribe took command early but could not add on and eventually suffered a loss as the Twins rallied for the 3-2 win. Minnesota is one of the teams the Indians need to make sure they handle if they’re going to stay in the race, so they cannot afford another loss and a blown series in the process.

The price on this contest is not much of an obstacle. The one cautionary note is that Cleveland figures to be a very popular choice with the masses today. Nevertheless, it’s a game they ought to win, so I’ll make the Indians the Saturday comp.