Los Angeles Angels vs. Cleveland Indians Predictions
Los Angeles Angels (62-63) vs. Cleveland Indians (60-61)
When: 7:10 p.m., Sunday, August 22
Where: Progressive Field, Cleveland
Moneyline: LAA +120/CLE -140 (Intertops - Oldest and most trusted sportsbook!)
Runline: Angels +1.5/Indians -1.5
Starting Pitchers: Jose Suarez vs. Cal Quantrill
Playing Out the String
It’s a bit hard to believe that ESPN didn’t swap this game out for two teams who are actually in the race for the postseason, as both of these teams have pretty much seen the season become a waste and now find themselves on the outside looking in at the playoff race. The Indians are on their way to a full rebuild and are currently the best of four also-rans behind the White Sox (although Cleveland is quickly losing ground to Detroit). At the same time, the Angels haven’t really come all that close to a playoff season despite Shohei Ohtani’s incredible campaign.
As such, there’s little at stake in this contest, which can make it a hard one to predict. So far, Cleveland seems to be playing with enthusiasm, as the Indians really don’t want the embarrassment of getting caught by a Tigers squad that wasn’t playing for anything at the start of the year. The Angels seem to have accepted that they’re not going to the postseason this year, and the first two games of this series have reflected that.
One Good Bat
Here’s the reality for the Angels: other than Ohtani, there’s not really much that can hurt their opponents on most nights, and even though he plays two positions better than most players play one, he can’t play all nine positions, leaving the Angels with several holes in their lineup.
The results reflect the reality of the situation. So far in this series, the Angels seem to have left all of their offense in Michigan, as they have been outscored 14-2 in two games against a Cleveland team that doesn’t even hit all that well on most nights. In recent showings, the Indians have turned up the offense but still rank just 23rd in batting average and 26th in on-base percentage.
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Conversely, Ohtani has really struggled to hit Cleveland pitching in this series. For the first two games, he’s 1-for-8 and struck out three times on Saturday, and the Angels have just six other hits in two games. When Ohtani isn’t hitting, the Angels are frankly totally lost at the plate.
The Under King
Cal Quantrill has been an ideal pitcher for bettors to ride because he pitches for a team that usually doesn’t provide much offense, meaning that under has been the way to go whenever he takes the mound. Over his past 12 starts, Quantrill has seen the under cash nine times with one push, and the only exceptions have been two instances where the Indians’ offense struck for at least seven runs.
With how the Indians have hit this series, the under is a bigger risk than usual, but the number is still pretty high, so there’s a good chance that an under bet could cash in as long as Quantrill keeps the Angels doing what they’ve been doing in this series. He did give up three runs in his last appearance against Minnesota, but otherwise, he’s held six of his past seven foes to two runs or less.
- The Angels are 2-5 in their past seven as an underdog.
- The Angels are 21-6 in their past 27 against a team under .500.
- The Indians are 4-1 in their past five Sunday games.
- The Indians are 47-19 in their past 66 as a home favorite.
- The over is 7-2 following an Angels loss.
- The under is 16-6 in the Angels’ past 22 road games.
- The over is 6-2 in the Indians’ past eight games.
- The under is 9-4-1 following an Indians win.
- The Indians are 38-16 in their past 54 against the Angels.
- The under is 5-2 in the past seven meetings in Cleveland.
- The under is 4-1-2 in the past seven meetings.
The weather is getting a little better after the Ohio steam bath, but it’s still not great. Temperatures will sit at 82 degrees at the first pitch, with the wind blowing in from left field at six miles per hour.
I’m not impressed by the Angels lately, and with Quantrill pitching reasonably well, I really doubt that they get much done in this series finale. Short of Ohtani getting things going and getting some help, this isn’t a good matchup for an Angels team that seems to already have their minds on 2022.
I want the team that cares about the present; I’m backing the Tribe.
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