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Road sweet road for Mets

Jeff Fogle  
VSiN City newsletter

August 13, 2018 11:33 PM

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Struggling Luis Severino isn't what he was for the Yankees.
© USA Today Sports Images

Gotham shocker as the Mets embarrass the Yankees. Plus…pennant race coverage, NFL notes, and an update of our Premier League “market” Power Ratings right now in VSiN City.

MLB Monday: Mets pound Yankees, now have the better road offense in 2018!
We said it was hard to believe when we first reported it weeks ago. It’s still hard to believe. But the New York Mets have an excellent road offense. Playing home games at Citi Field has killed their production this season (it’s the #1 pitchers park thus far in 2018). If you compare the Mets' road offense to that of the Yankees…it’s the boys in the lighter shade of blue scoring more runs per game.

2018 Road Scoring
NY Mets: 4.76 runs per game
NY Yankees: 4.75 runs per game

Yeah, only one one-hundredth of a run per game. But, that’s with a pitcher batting most of the time! The Yankees get to use a designated hitter in all but road games in NL parks. 

If you watched ESPN’s telecast tonight, you heard the announcers in absolute shock that the Mets were hitting homers and scoring runs. When NOT playing in a home park that reduces scoring 28%, they can get numbers on the board. Been true all season. 

NY Mets (plus 190) 8, NY Yankees 5 
Total Bases Plus Walks: Mets 33, Yankees 14
Starting Pitchers: deGrom 6.2 IP, 2 ER, Severino 4 IP, 4 ER
Bullpen: Mets 2.1 IP, 2 ER, Yankees 5 IP, 4 ER

Yanks did well to put five on the board with only 14 offensive bases. Normally that would be about 3.5 runs (divide TB plus W by four to get a rudimentary “runs created” estimate). A “football blowout” with those offensive totals tonight. Mets won home run count 5-1. 

Possibly the most important development from this result is confirmation that Luis Severino is currently only a shadow of his former self. At the very least, this would matter in a one-game wild-card showdown (probably against Oakland or Seattle) because Severino’s the logical choice to start that game as “staff ace.” But his last seven outings suggest the Yankees may have to go with someone else.

Severino’s Last 7 Starts
ERA: 7.50 (30 earned runs in 36 IP)
WHIP: 1.72 (62 his plus walks in those 36 IP)

Not one bad start…or a few. But a SEVEN-game stretch where he’s thrown a lot of batting practice. Maybe he’s battling through a minor injury that will go away. Maybe it’s mechanical. Six weeks to figure out the “maybe.”

During the best of times in 2018, the Yankees rotation was largely “Severino and cross your fingers.” A consistently productive offense and lockdown relievers in innings 7-8-9 overcame the rest of the rotation. The injury to Aaron Judge has de-clawed more of the offense than expected. Nine virtual auto-outs don’t matter late in the game if you’ve fallen way behind. 

We’ll have more on NYY stat performance since the All-Star Break in Wednesday’s New York Post article, after talking about potential ballpark illusions for the Philadelphia Phillies in today’s tip. Click here to see all of VSiN’s recent contributions to the NYP. 

MLB Monday: Washington blows another lead, then loses in the ninth again!
How many punches to the gut can a team take?! After blowing a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the ninth inning Sunday in Chicago, the Washington Nationals blew a 4-2 lead in the bottom of the eighth Monday in St. Louis. Despite forging a 6-6 tie in the top of the ninth…

St. Louis (-140) 7, Washington 6 
Total Bases Plus Walks: Washington 18, St. Louis 29
Starting Pitchers: Milone 4.1 IP, 2 ER, Mikolas 7 IP, 4 ER
Bullpen: Washington 3.2 IP, 5 ER, St. Louis 2 IP, 2 ER

Paul DeJong led off the bottom of the ninth with a walk-off homer. Nats fans are tired of seeing other teams celebrate those. This is now two straight one-run losses, the third in four days, and an astonishing full season record of 11-21 in games decided by fewer than two runs. 

Washington falls to 60-59 on the season. They were supposed to compete with the Cubs and Dodgers among the NL’s elite. That poor one-run record is certainly a key influence. Can’t win your division if you can’t hold leads!  

St. Louis stays hot with its sixth straight victory, moving to 64-55 on the season. You can see above that Monday’s win was much more of a stat blowout than a 7-6 score would have suggested. Cards have the best record in the National League since the All-Star break. Looks like that managerial change did them some good after all. St. Louis now five games behind the Cubs for first place in the NL Central, two behind Milwaukee for second place (and the second Wildcard spot in the NL). 

In other early Monday finishers involving playoff contenders…

*Cleveland (-180) beat Cincinnati 10-3. Cleveland’s about as locked in as it could be in terms of the playoffs. The Indians can’t possibly lose their horrible division. They can’t realistically catch Boston for the #1 seed. It’s going to take a lot of work to catch Houston for the #2 seed. The Astros won’t stay in this tailspin forever. Tribe will be a #3 seed barring several surprises. Now 67-51 with this win. 

*Texas (plus 160) beat Arizona 5-3. You’re not going to win the NL West playing like this! Stunner for the Diamondbacks after dropping two of three in Cincinnati over the weekend. Arizona falls to 65-55, as Bartolo Colon (gulp) outduels Zack Greinke. 

MLB Betting: Might be time to back off the twinbill trend in must-win spots for contenders
What had been a 19-4 trend (“Game 1 losers” coming back to win Game 2 of a doubleheader) lost a couple of times in the past few days. Outmanned Baltimore failed to win as a big dog against Boston Saturday. Miami barely showed up for either game Monday vs. the NL East leading Atlanta Braves. 

Saturday
Boston (-270) beat Baltimore 5-0
Boston (-220) beat Baltimore 6-4

Monday
Atlanta (-195) beat Miami 9-1
Atlanta (-310) beat Miami 6-1

Minor percentage impact on profit because a few big dogs had cashed earlier tickets. But this could mean that what was playing out as a virtual “gentleman’s agreement” across the sport is no longer in force when contenders face the dregs. 

We’ll keep an eye on this trend that VSiN’s Sam Panayotovich first alerted us to several weeks ago. Could still be a money-maker moving forward when contenders face each other, when non-contenders face each other, and certainly whenever a contender loses an DH opener to a dreg. 

Next opportunity to consider this trend will be Thursday, when the NY Mets visit Philadelphia for two. It now stands at 19-6.

MLB Futures: Updated odds to win World Series from the South Point
The South Point, VSiN’s home base here in Las Vegas, posted updated odds to win the World Series Monday. Wanted to run those for you here in the newsletter.

Odds to win World Series
Boston 3/1
LA Dodgers 4/1
Houston 9/2
NY Yankees 6/1
Chicago Cubs 6/1
Milwaukee 8/1
Cleveland 10/1
Philadelphia 10/1
Arizona 10/1
Washington 10/1
Seattle 12/1
Oakland 18/1
Atlanta 20/1
Colorado 40/1
St. Louis 60/1

Remember that the South Point adjusts prices based on betting from its customers. That’s why you’ll see some differences here compared to other spots in Las Vegas or offshore. 

NFL: Early lines for Week 2 of the preseason
This week’s exhibition point spreads currently fall in a very tight range. Virtually all home teams are favored between -2.5 and -3.5. No road favorites this week. The biggest favorite right now is Minnesota -4.5 at home against Jacksonville. No surprise the Vikings are getting respect given their head coach’s preseason history. 

Here were the point spreads at the South Point Monday evening. We included live national TV broadcasts in parenthesis. If you watched last week, you saw a bunch of commercials for Saturday’s QUADRUPLEHEADER on the NFL Network. ESPN has a couple of live games this week, too. 

Thursday
Philadelphia at New England (-3.5/43)
NY Jets at Washington (-3.5/39.5) (on ESPN)
Pittsburgh at Green Bay (-2.5/42)

Friday
NY Giants at Detroit (-3/40.5)
Kansas City at Atlanta (-2.5/40)
Miami at Carolina (-4/43)
Buffalo at Cleveland (-3.5/38.5) (on the NFL Network)
Arizona at New Orleans (-3.5/42.5)

Saturday
Jacksonville at Minnesota (-4.5/40) (on the NFL Network)
Oakland at the LA Rams (-3/42.5) (on the NFL Network)
Cincinnati at Dallas (-3/41) (on the NFL Network)
San Francisco at Houston (-2.5/41)
Tampa Bay at Tennessee (-3/41)
Chicago at Denver (-3/41)
Seattle at the LA Chargers (-3/41) (on the NFL Network)

Monday
Baltimore at Indianapolis (-1.5/40.5) (on ESPN)

We’ll keep an eye out for market moves through the week. (Go here to see the odds across Vegas books.) Then, on Friday, we’ll provide stat recaps of Thursday’s action. Next Monday, a weekend rundown.

We have room today to go a bit deeper into week one stats. Let’s run some highlights and lowlights you can use when handicapping this next batch of games. 

Best Offensive Yardage: San Francisco 454, Cincinnati 447, Green Bay 445, Buffalo 430, Chicago 423, Minnesota 406, Baltimore 403.
Given the fact that most first-teamers didn’t see much action last week…those totals are telling you which backup quarterbacks may be capable of thriving through the month. Or, they reflect the impact of head coaches who prioritize getting results in August. Should mention that Chicago and Baltimore getting head starts might not have hurt their yardage volume either. 

Worst Offensive Yardage: LA Rams 170, Arizona 174, Seattle 195, Detroit 227.
Those four really stick out as offenses that couldn’t move the ball. None of them are expected to be worthless on offense in the regular season. So, a strike against backup QB’s, or evidence that the coach doesn’t care about offense yet. Be careful betting this group in W2 unless you’re reading in local media that offense is about to become a point of emphasis. 

Cleanest Offenses: New Orleans (0 turnovers and 5 incomplete passes), Houston (0 turnovers and 9 incomplete passes), Carolina (0 turnovers and 11 incomplete passes), Dallas (0 turnovers and 13 incomplete passes).
Not necessarily a “go” sign for betting. Evidence for conservative play that may prevent any scoring explosions the next three weeks. Tough to cover “clean” two weeks in a row in August. All four of those teams covered their point spreads last week. 

Sloppiest Offenses: LA Chargers (4 turnovers and 21 incomplete passes), Chicago (3 turnovers and 15 incomplete passes), San Francisco (3 turnovers and 15 incomplete passes), Philadelphia (3 turnovers and 14 incomplete passes), Miami (2 turnovers and 19 incomplete passes).
At the very least, aggressive attacks that were probably too aggressive last week. You would assume an emphasis on execution this week…particularly for teams who lost (Chargers, Bears 0-2 now, Eagles, and Dolphins). 

Teams Winning the Second Half by Double Digits: New England 23-0 over Washington, Green Bay 24-7 over Tennessee, Carolina 21-6 over Buffalo, San Francisco 17-7 over Dallas.
At least worth considering that the influence of backups might hold true through the month. Either with those winners or those losers.

Premier League Soccer: An updated estimate of “market” Power Ratings for Week 2
Once again, the Monday MLB schedule was fairly light. That gives us room to update our estimated “market” Power Ratings for Britain’s Premier League soccer. Markets have definitely reacted to week one results. We’ll do our best to capture that on the fly for these first few weeks of the new season. 

These are presented on a “goal supremacy” scale. Take any two teams, and the differential represents a “neutral field” betting line (goal line) between those teams. We’re using 0.2 goals as a standard for home field advantage. This scale was built based on Monday night market prices for Week Two. 

2.9: Manchester City
2.4: Liverpool
2.3: Chelsea, Tottenham
2.2: Manchester United
1.8: Arsenal
1.5: Everton, Leicester
1.3: Newcastle, Brighton and Hove, Wolverhampton
1.2: Southampton
1.0: West Ham, Crystal Palace
0.9: Bournemouth, Cardiff, Watford, Burnley
0.8: Fulham
0.3 Huddersfield

We’re not going to pretend that what you see above is “exactly” right. It’s a good faith effort to capture what we can based on this week’s prices. 

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