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The MLB postseason is finally here! Here at Cappers Info, we have all of the ins and outs that you need to know before making your picks in the four series that begin on Wednesday. Use this as a reference not only for betting games in this series, but for futures World Series bets as well.
MLB Playoff Pick #1: Atlanta Braves (+160 at Diamond Sportsbook) vs. San Francisco Giants: There's just something we like about the Braves right now. A feel good story always seems to rule the day, at least early in the playoffs. Case in point… Remember the Tampa Bay Rays in 2008 and the Colorado Rockies in 2007? These were teams that really sort of snuck up on everyone to make the playoffs, and when they finally got there, they did a ton of damage. Neither one won the World Series, but both did at least get there. Tim Hudson has been pitching out of his mind right now, and though the Braves don't have a bullpen full of names, if the rest of the starters can just stick with the powerful arms for the Giants, the pen can do its job. Remember the name Brian McCann. With Chipper Jones out of the lineup, it will be up to McCann, who led the team in homers with 21, to try to lead the way. Atlanta has a real chance to steal one of these first two at home, especially with its two aces on the mound, and if that happens, San Fran must watch out. The Braves had the best home record in baseball with 56 wins.
MLB Playoff Pick #2: Philadelphia Phillies (-300 at Diamond Sportsbook) vs. Cincinnati Reds : We know that absolutely anything can happen in the playoffs, but it's been over two months since any of the four big starters, Roy Halladay, Cole Hamels, Roy Oswalt, and Joe Blanton have been beaten at home by any team in baseball. We don't really love Cincinnati's odds, particularly in the first two games in the City of Brotherly Love. We admire the grittiness of this team, but when push comes to shove, Cincinnati is the one team that really doesn't look like it belongs in the playoffs, as it took out a lousy division and really doesn't have the pitching rotation to keep up with any of the eight teams, let alone that of perhaps the best staff in the game. Unless Brad Lidge and Ryan Madson implode, this series shouldn't be all that difficult. The Phillies are the one team that really sprinted to the finish line this year, and if that momentum keeps going, this could be a very, very short series.
MLB Playoff Pick #3: Texas Rangers (+150 at Diamond Sportsbook) vs. Tampa Bay Rays : Be careful what you wish for, Tampa Bay! The Rays worked hard to get home field advantage throughout the American League playoffs, and they got just that, but now, they're probably going to have to figure out how to beat Cliff Lee at least once, if not twice, in order to get to the ALCS for the second time in team history. We don't love Tampa Bay's odds. Not only was Lee absolutely on fire in the postseason last year, but in Game 2, James Shields leaves us with no confidence, as he was one of the worst money pitchers amongst the teams in the playoffs and has been pitching horribly down the stretch. To top it off, there will be absolutely no home field advantage in Tampa Bay, as we know that the fans aren't showing up for the first two games of this series in the middle of the week and the middle of the afternoon. This is a very dangerous spot for the team with the best record in the AL, and we are here to exploit that.
MLB Playoff Pick #4: Minnesota Twins (+150 at Diamond Sportsbook) vs. New York Yankees: These two teams might be a heck of a lot more evenly matched than the oddsmakers are letting in on. The Bronx Bombers might have a nightmarish lineup to try to face, but beyond CC Sabathia, is there really a pitcher in this rotation that you're ready to back up the truck on and back in MLB betting action? There certainly isn't from our standpoint. If this becomes a bullpen series, we love Minnesota's chances even though the Yanks have arguably the best closer ever both in terms of regular season and postseason accomplishments in Mariano Rivera on their side. Matt Capps, Jon Rauch, Jose Mijares, and Brian Fuentes are all absolutely studs out of the pen, and Rod Gardenhire knows how to use them. Justin Morneau won't be available at all during this series with his post concussion complications, but who cares? Even without one of the best hitters in baseball, the Twins have been on a roll. That should continue with a great series victory over the defending champs.