Milwaukee Brewers vs. San Francisco Giants Preview and Pick

Milwaukee Brewers (1-1) Manny Parra +105, 7.5 O/U at San
Francisco Giants (1-1) Matt Cain -125, 7.5 O/U, AT&T Park, San
Francisco, Calif., 7:05 PM EST, Thursday

by Badger of

The Milwaukee Brewers will send young lefty Manny Parra to the mound
Thursday when the Brewers hope to slip out of AT&T Park with the
series win, but the San Francisco Giants will counter with a young
stud of their own when righty Matt Cain tries to win the rubber match
for the G-men at home.

Parra hopes to duplicate what his fellow staff-mate Yovanni Gallardo
did to the Giants yesterday, as Gallardo went 6 and 2/3-innings
allowing two runs on six hits and two walks in the Brewers 4-2
victory. Gallardo also drilled a 1-2 fastball from Randy Johnson deep
to left to help his own cause as the Brewers finished with only five
hits as a team.

The Giants are hoping for results more like opening day, as they
pounded out 12 hits en route to a 10-6 victory Tuesday on a day their
ace Tim Lincecum didnt make it out of the third inning. Run totals
like that would be a good thing for Matt Cain, as his low 3.76 ERA
last season was covered by little or no run-support and thus he
finished with a lousy 8-14 record.

Oddsmakers opened the Giants and Cain as large -140 favorites on the moneyline, but the number has moved quite a bit since it debuted. San
Francisco and Cain are now anywhere from -125 favorites to a home-
team friendly -109 at 5Dimes. The Brewers and Parra can be found
anywhere from +105 to minus-105 depending on which Internet
sportsbook you play with.

The over/under total opened at 8 and has moved down the hook to 7.5
at just about every offshore sportsbook you can find.

The Brewers offense has played a little slow, but steady throughout
the series so far with 15 hits, two homeruns and 10 runs scored in
two games. They could be due for a breakout game, as only Ryan Braun
has had multiple hits in both games and guys like Cory Hart and J.J.
Hardy havent even contributed yet. Cain faced the Crew once last
season and lost despite only giving up 4 runs in six innings in the
9-1 Giants loss.

Gallardo stymied the Giants offense last night, but it still has
pounded out 18 hits in two games including Tuesdays three-homer
output. Parra has fared very well against the Giants in his young
career, as he is 2-0 with a 2.95 ERA in two starts last year.

Both bullpens have pitched well early on, as the Brewers new set-up/
closer combo of Todd Coffey and Carlos Villanueva passed its first
test last night. While the Giants pen has only given up three runs in
10 innings of work behind short starts by Lincecum and Johnson.

Its dangerous to read too much into betting trends during the first
few weeks as its often a reflection of last years team and not the
team youre betting on this season, but that said the Brewers are 7-1
in the last eight games versus the G-men. The Brewers are only 3-11
in their last 14 road games though.

San Francisco has betting trends that favor an over bet on the total.
The Giants have gone over the total in 8 of their last 10 as
favorites, and the over is 6-2 as home favorites on the moneyline in
AT&T Park. The Brewers and Giants also have a history of playing over
the total, as the over is 20-7-2 in their last 29 head-to-head.

Badgers Pick: I like the pitching matchup in this game a lot, as I
think both starters will limit the damage to just a few runs if they
allow any at all. A few 8th-inning or 9th-inning runs will be the
difference in this game, but the game will still stay under the total
in another 4-2 Brewers win. Take the under 7.5 and/or the Brewers as
+105 dogs.