Dave’s Free Plays, Tuesday 6/23/15

  • June 23, 2015

Pedro Martinez is going to have quite the week coming up in late July. He’ll be in Cooperstown for his induction into the Hall of Fame on 7/26. Two days later, Pedro will be center stage at Fenway Park as his number gets retired by the Red Sox.

Obviously, all the accolades and honors Martinez has earned are well deserved. He’s truly one of the all-time greats. Pedro’s run with the Red Sox was incredible. Personally, I believe his 1999 season to possibly be the best one year any pitcher has ever had.

The Martinez numbers from that season were simply incredible. 23-4, 2.07 and an insane 13.2 K’s per nine innings. I had never heard of FIP in 1999, but his 1.39 for that entire year is unbelievable. What makes that campaign stand out even more is the era in which it took place. 1999 was the heart of the steroid period, with musclebound hitters bombing out home runs at a ridiculous rate. For Martinez to put up numbers such as he did in a year like that was absolutely crazy.

This has been a throughly unmemorable season for the Red Sox, at least to this point. But regardless of whether things improve or stay the same, July 28 will be a night to remember for everyone in attendance at Fenway Park.

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Loser with the Rays on Monday, but at least I managed to get involved in a somewhat historic game. The Rays became just the ninth team ever to get at least 15 hits along with five stolen bases and somehow not score more than five runs. The daily free play on the Angels won, but I did not include it on my card as the wind conditions and the return of Jose Altuve for the Astros scared me off. As it turned out, Altuve had a big hand in tying the game for Houston, but the Halos pushed across the winning run in the eighth inning, and Santiago pitched very well.

This has been a really good month for me on the diamond, and I’m looking forward to maintaining things as we move forward. If you’d like to be along for the journey, check out my guaranteed monthly intro offer. There’s a great guarantee included and I’ll be happy to provide all the details via email. Contact me directly at cokin@cox.net.

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22-4 on the last 26 daily free plays with the Angels winning on Monday and I’m going right back to that same well again this evening.

ASTROS (McHugh)  @  ANGELS (Wilson)

Take: ANGELS -115

Current form for the two starting pitchers will be the key ingredient for me tonight as the Astros try to even up their series with the Angels.

This has not been a good stretch for Houston righty Collin McHugh. He finally got his K rate back in order last start and settled down after a rough opening frame against the Rockies. But McHugh also had control problems throughout and was fortunate to escape with the win as the Rockies squandered a multitude of opportunities throughout the game. In other words, I’m not ready to assume that McHugh has shaken his recent slump and I think he’s going to be vulnerable again tonight.

CJ Wilson is on a mini-roll for the Angels. The southpaw has been attacking hitters rather than nibbling as he has a tendency to do at times. Wilson is a solid starter when he’s aggressive with his four-seamer. He gets in trouble when he tries to finesse the opposition. That’s when the walks start showing up and the pitch count goes through the roof.

The Astros are what should be a good matchup for Wilson. They’re a very aggressive team and if the right Wilson arrives on the mound tonight, it’s a lineup he’ll have a good chance to contain. Houston has been at its offensive worst facing lefties on the road, so I like the idea of backing Wilson tonight.

One concern is the late inning bullpen work for the Halos. Joe Smith had a bad outing on Monday night and that meant a four-out save from Huston Street. Fortunately, Street should still be available tonight. But Smith probably won’t be and I’m not sure Trevor Gott would be an option as he’s now pitched back to back games. But the Houston pen is also a little weary at this point, so while it’s not a perfect scenario for the hosts, it’s not awful either.

The Angels have one other big factor on their side here, and his name is Albert Pujols. There is no one hotter than Pujols over the last month or so. McHugh has been vulnerable to the long ball, and I wouldn’t be shocked if Pujols does more damage tonight.

The number here is very reasonable given the recent form of the two starting pitchers and I don’t see enough to discourage me elsewhere, so I’m going with the Angels for tonight’s free play.

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FanDuel Value Play, Tuesday 6/23

CJ Wilson, P, $8100

No need to go into great detail here as that’s mostly covered in the free play writeup. Bottom line for me is that I see Wilson pitching well here, he’s been racking up K’s lately and the Astros are prone to getting whiffed. Wilson at $8100 is all the way down at 13th on the Tuesday salary rundown, which I believe makes him a bargain worth backing.