MLB Picks: Oakland Athletics vs. Texas Rangers

The Oakland Athletics (42-30) and Texas Rangers (39-31) will continue their four-game American League West series Tuesday night at the Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, with the first pitch scheduled for 8:05 p.m. ET

Oakland Athletics vs. Texas Rangers

Texas Rangers SP Yu Darvish is 4-1 with a 2.72 ERA in eight home starts in 2013
Texas Rangers SP Yu Darvish is 4-1 with a 2.72 ERA in eight home starts in 2013

Oakland has dropped three of its last four games, including a 8-7 setback to Texas as +105 road underdogs Monday, while going OVER the betting total for a second consecutive contest.  “We scored enough runs to win the game,” commented Athletics manager Bob Melvin.  “Usually with our pitching staff, that’ll win you a game.”  Yoenis Cespedes has had to be the team’s designated hitter the last four games, as he continues to deal with the soreness of his left hamstring.  Oakland is 27-19 versus right-handed starters, with the OVER going 25-21 in that situation.

Athletics starting pitcher Jarrod Parker (5-6, 4.45 ERA) has led the club to four consecutive victories, including a no-decision effort in a 3-2 home win over the New York Yankees, as he allowed two runs and five hits over eight frames.  The right-hander is 2-3 with a 3.86 ERA in six road outings, but he has served up nine home runs in 35 combined frames.  In four career games versus the Rangers, Parker has tallied a 3-1 record and 3.00 ERA, but suffered a 3-1 road loss on May 22.

Texas snapped a six-game losing streak in which it scored just eight combined runs, as the club hopes to turn things around in the second half of June.  “They just showed what they have the capability of doing, what they did tonight,” commented Rangers manager Ron Washington about Monday’s victory.  The Rangers are hoping that regular designated hitter Lance Berkman is able to break out of his recent slump, as he’s batting .194 with three RBIs in his last 17 contests.  Texas is 37-17 as home favorites of -150 to -175 the last two-plus seasons, with the OVER going 28-23-1 in those 54 opportunities.

Rangers starting pitcher Yu Darvish (7-2, 2.64 ERA) hasn’t earned a victory since May 16, but he didn’t earn a decision in a 3-1 home loss to the Toronto Blue Jays last time out, as he allowed one run and three hits over seven frames.  The right-hander is 4-1 with a 2.72 ERA in eight home outings, issuing 20 walks and striking out 65 batters in 53 combined frames.  In four career games versus the Athletics, Darvish has compiled a 1-3 record and 3.81 ERA, including a 1-0 home loss on May 21.

Sports bettors will likely back the Athletics due to their 11-3 record in their last 14 games versus teams with a winning record.

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