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On Thursday, June 21, Oskeim previews the National League West game between the San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres.
Oskeim recommends taking the San Diego Padres behind Tyson Ross as one of his free sports picks for tonight. Good luck and enjoy the games!
San Diego has lost four straight and five of its last 6 games overall entering tonight’s series-opener against the Giants. The good news for the Padres is that they have won four of the first 7 meetings in this series and are 11-5 in their last sixteen games following a loss.
San Diego starter Tyson Ross has enjoyed success against the Giants, going 4-4 with a 2.92 ERAS and 1.33 WHIP in ten career starts. Ross is having a solid 2018 campaign, posting a 3.51 ERA, 3.60 FIP and 3.57 xFIP in fourteen starts, a span covering 82.0 innings.
The 31-year-old is a nice trade chip for the floundering Padres based on his strong season-to-date numbers, although his velocity has been declining all season. The drop in velocity has resulted in subpar FIP and xFIP numbers:
- April: 2.99 FIP, 3.27 xFIP
- May: 3.45 FIP, 3.59 xFIP
- June: 5.05 FIP, 4.08 xFIP
With that said, Ross has allowed three or fewer runs in seven consecutive starts and has twice pitched the Padres to wins over San Francisco this season. He limited the Giants to just one unearned run in a 5-1 home win in April, then left with a 2-1 lead in San Francisco on May 1.
San Diego is 6-0 in Ross’ previous six starts following a team loss, 6-1 in Ross’ last seven starts and 5-1 in his last six road outings against .499 or worse opposition. The Padres have won five of Ross’ last seven starts against the Giants, whereas San Francisco is just 1-5 in Madison Bumgarner’s last six outings versus San Diego.
Bumgarner toes the rubber with a 4.67 ERA, 5.17 FIP and 4.99 xFIP in his first three starts after returning from a broken finger. The Giants have lost each of those three starts and Bumgarner has reached the seventh inning since his return. The latter fact is significant in that San Francisco’s bullpen blew leads in four losses against the Marlins over the last ten days.
San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland blew a save on Monday and subsequently broke his finger after punching a wall in frustration. Fellow reliever Sam Dyson assume the closer role for the Giants but he was yanked in Wednesday’s game after allowing two ninth-inning runs.
While the sample size is small (3 starts, 17.1 IP), it’s difficult to ignore Bumgarner’s 46.8% hard contact rate, 4.67 K/9 rate and 1.56 HR/9 rate. Other red flags date back to last season where he allowed a .340-plus ISO in August and September, something he has not done since 2010.
The southpaw boasted the league’s 7th-best swinging strike rate (SwStr%) with his fastball between 2013-2016. The average four-seamer induced swinging strikes 7.7% of the time; Bumgarner’s induced whiffs 11.9% of the time. However, his fastball’s swinging strike rate plummeted to 7.3% in 2017.
Finally, San Diego arrives in town with an excellent bullpen that owns a 3.36 ERA and 1.17 WHIP in 2018, including posting a 2.74 ERA and 0.98 WHIP on the road, a 3.15 ERA and 1.12 WHIP at night and a 3.04 ERA and 1.13 WHIP against divisional foes.
Take the San Diego Padres at an excellent price as one of Oskeim’s free sports picks for Thursday, June 21.
Oskeim Sports’ Free Sports Picks for June 21:
- San Diego Padres (+142) over San Francisco Giants
- St. Louis Cardinals (+115) over Milwaukee Brewers