It was never reasonable to expect the 2012 regular season to finish in the same exciting way that the 2011 season did, when playoff teams were decided on the final day of action. However, with the addition of a second Wild Card spot, it’s unfortunate that heading in to the final three games those two spots already locked up. The Baltimore Orioles and Oakland Athletics the two teams headed to the postseason via American League Wild Card spots, although the Athletics still have a slim sports betting chance to catch the Texas Rangers in the AL West this week.
Baltimore Orioles @ Tampa Bay Rays
Monday, 7:10 PM ET
The Orioles entered this past weekend three games up on the Rays with three to go, so one win either way would eliminate Tampa Bay and ensure Baltimore is through. However, Tampa Bay won’t stop fighting this week regardless of their position, handing the ball to Alex Cobb for the series opener. Cobb gave up just one earned run in five innings of work in a 4-2 win over the Boston Red Sox last week to improve to 10-9, and has been much more consistent of late than Baltimore starter Wei-Yin Chen.
MLB Betting Pick: Tampa Bay Rays
Texas Rangers @ Oakland Athletics
Monday, 10:05 PM ET
Whether or not the Athletics still have a slim chance at the AL West will be an interesting storyline to follow, even though it appears both teams are set for the postseason. Oakland will love its matchup for the season opener with Jarrod Parker set to get the betting start against Martin Perez. The Athletics chased Perez in the first inning of a 9-3 win last week after he gave up five earned runs without recording a second out, and the 21-year old has now pitched in nine-straight Texas losses. Parker meanwhile got the win in that game, going six-strong and allowing just three earned runs.
MLB Betting Pick: Oakland Athletics
Los Angeles Angels @ Seattle Mariners
Monday, 10:10 PM ET
The opening matchup between the Angels and Mariners will feature an intriguing pitching duel between CJ Wilson and Felix Hernandez, and it will be interesting to see if the former can establish his self as a legitimate arm that Texas can rely on once the postseason begins. Wilson has not lasted more than 5.1 innings in any of his last three online sportsbook starts, giving up at least three earned runs in each of them, and needs to be better if the team is going to be able to trust him in the postseason. Meanwhile Hernandez, who has been brilliant at times and awful at others, heads in to this game with three-straight losses and Seattle has lost the last five games he has started. The Mariners’ offense has been better of late, but if Hernandez isn’t on his game again the Angels will come out on top. For all of the latest MLB odds and news, be sure to check out the best sports betting sites.
MLB Betting Pick: Los Angeles Angels