Bombs Away: Angels at White Sox ML & Total Picks
Los Angeles Angels (70-74) vs. Chicago White Sox (83-61)
When: 8:10 p.m., Tuesday, September 15
Where: Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago
Moneyline: LAA +200/CHW -245
Runline: Angels +1.5/White Sox -1.5 (Get dimelines >>>)
Starting Pitchers: Janson Junk (0-1, 2.45 ERA, 1.91 WHIP) vs. Dallas Keuchel (8-9, 5.33 ERA, 1.45 WHIP)
Life’s been pretty uncomplicated for the White Sox for quite a while now, and it’s a good thing because the Pale Hose really hasn’t been close to playing their best baseball. Chicago has cruised to a relatively easy AL Central title, mainly because the other four teams in the division were either past their prime (Cleveland), not quite ready (Detroit, Kansas City), or just plain fell off a cliff (Minnesota).That’s left the White Sox in kind of a weird position, as they know that they’re in the playoffs barring something ridiculous, meaning they’re not exactly playing with any pressure on themselves. Chicago has been very relaxed and has been chiefly either winning or losing two out of three of their recent series because as long as they don’t get swept, they know they’re not in any danger from the four teams behind them. Coming into this game, 89 wins would be enough for the White Sox, and that’s if Cleveland were to run the table, which almost certainly won’t happen.
The Angels have to be the most wasteful squad in any of the five major sports, as they’ve managed to squander Shohei Ohtani’s magical season with nothing to show for it. With 18 games to play, the Angels sit four games under .500 and have little to no hope at getting to the postseason, leaving them with a question of motivation.
The Angels sit 11 games behind the Blue Jays and Yankees and don’t really have any way to catch up, so the only real thing they have to play for is finishing at .500. Whether that’s enough of a motivator for this group is a tough question, as the Angels aren’t really a young group of players like the Tigers, who could build off finishing .500 and use it for next season. This is a group that is built to win now, as Mike Trout and Ohtani are both in the primes of their careers. With the Angels wasting another season of their careers, it’s difficult to see them showing much motivation in the final three weeks of the season.
Late Season Swoon
One guy who should be motivated to do better is Dallas Keuchel, who has been a royal mess as of late. The White Sox have counted on Keuchel throughout the year, but the numbers have been nothing short of ugly in his past four starts. Keuchel has given up 21 earned runs while striking out just eight hitters, and the White Sox have seen some rather awful numbers on the scoreboard for their opponents. Chicago only has two wins in Keuchel’s past nine starts, and one of those was because they managed to score 17 runs on the Cubs in a 17-13 ballgame that saw both teams hit the over on their own. Otherwise, the Sox have really struggled with him on the mound, as three runs usually aren’t enough for them to get a win when he has the ball.
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- The Angels are 1-4 in their past five games.
- The Angels have lost four straight against the AL Central.
- The White Sox are 7-3 in their last ten against the AL West.
- The White Sox are 59-25 in their past 84 as a home favorite.
- The under is 8-3 in the Angels’ past 11 against the AL Central.
- The under is 7-3 in the Angels’ past ten overall.
- The under is 5-2-1 in the White Sox’s past eight overall.
- The under is 5-1-1 in the White Sox’s past seven against a right-handed starter.
- The under is 12-5 in the past 17 meetings in Chicago.
- The Angels are 13-4 in the past 17 meetings.
It’s perfect baseball weather in Chicago for this matchup, as temperatures will sit at 70 degrees with the wind blowing at eight miles per hour and coming toward the first-base dugout.
The White Sox are in full cruise control mode, which means this game is going to go one of two ways. Either Chicago is going to blast a disinterested Angels squad, or the White Sox will give away a game that they have no business losing. Based on Keuchel’s recent struggles, I really don’t want to risk it with him, so my bet is going to be the Over. But if I have to make a pick on this game, I’ll go with the Angels. The value is nonexistent with the White Sox, and Keuchel is just pitching so poorly right now that I really don’t want to trust him at all. There’s also no value to the Angels on the runline, as they don’t play one-run games very often, so I’ll take a shot with them on the Moneyline.