AFTER a brain fart last week when I just flat out forget to do my Sunday Picks, it’s time to get things back on track. MLB action, the NBA playoffs and the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters final make up this weekend selection of games. Here we go.
Last Sunday Picks: 5-3
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Chicago Cubs @ Cincinnati Reds
THE Cubs are looking for their 5th W in a row against a Reds squad that isn’t exactly setting the world on fire. The 3rd and final game of the series between the division rivals should go the way of Chicago with John Lackey (1-2, 4.00 ERA) leading the way.
Verdict: Cubs W
Houston Astros @ Tampa Bay Rays
AS the injury list piles up for the Rays their home record (9-3) continues to stay relatively solid, giving them some hope heading into the game against the Astros. Unfortunately Houston will hand them their fourth L at Tropicana Field on Sunday.
Verdict: Astros W
Boston Red Sox @ Baltimore Orioles
BOSTON haven’t exactly looked like the world beaters that most projected them to be early on this year. As Baltimore goes for the series sweep, their struggling starting pitcher Kevin Gausman (1-1, 7.23 ERA) may give the Red Sox the boost they need to get a win.
Verdict: Red Sox W
Image from baltimoresun.com
Atlanta Braves @ Philadelphia Phillies
AFTER a weird and wacky game on Saturday night both Atlanta and Philadelphia will be out to end the three game series between the squads on a high. The Braves get my vote here.
Verdict: Braves W
New York Yankees @ Pittsburgh Pirates
AARON Judge continues to crush home runs as the Yankees look to extend their league leading run tally. They square off against former Yankee and Pirates pitcher Ivan Nova (1-2, 2.25 ERA) in Pittsburgh on Sunday, were I expect they will get win number 12 on the young season.
Verdict: Yankees W
Cleveland Indians @ Chicago White Sox
WITH a six game winning streak on the line expect starting pitcher Danny Salazar (1-1, 3.57 ERA) to make quick work of the White Sox.
Verdict: Indians W
St Louis Cardinals @ Milwaukee Brewers
MIKE Leake and his NL leading 0.84 ERA is going to be needed to contain a Brewers line-up boasting the in form Eric Thames. Unfortunately for Thames his teammates haven’t been as impressive in the early going and the trend will continue against the Cards.
Verdict: Cardinals W
Detroit Tigers @ Minnesota Twins
THERE was plenty of feeling in Saturday’s game between the Tigers and Twins, as benches emptied with both Miguel Sano and Matthew Boyd ejected as a result. I’m backing Detroit’s Michael Fulmer (1-1, 3.00 ERA) to control the outcome in a positive way for his team.
Verdict: Tigers W
Kansas City Royals @ Texas Rangers
TEXAS has defeated Kansas City in nine straight contests and both starting pitchers Yu Darvish (1-2, 3.28 ERA) for the Rangers and Jason Hammel (0-1, 4.60 ERA) are out to help their teams get their season back on track. I have faith the Royals can snap the losing streak.
Verdict: Royals W
San Fransisco Giants @ Colorado Rockies
A series sweep is on the cards for the Rockies who will look to keep San Fran pitcher Jeff Samardzija (0-3, 6.16 ERA) winless on the young season. Rookie Kyle Freeland (1-1, 4.91 ERA) will get the start for the Rockies who have league leading save man Greg Holland to offer support should it be needed. My guess, he won’t be needed.
Verdict: Rockies W
Toronto Blue Jays @ Los Angeles Angels
TORONTO have managed to some what fix their run scoring issues in the series against the Angels. They will now look to their ace Marcus Stroman (1-2, 4.05 ERA) to help steer them to more victories.
Verdict: Blue Jays W
Seattle Mariners @ Oakland Athletics
A’S right hander Andrew Triggs (3-0, 0.00 ERA) is looking to keep his streak of 17 2/3 innings without a earned run going against the Mariners on Sunday. I’m tipping his streak will be broken, with Oakland still getting the win.
Verdict: Athletics W
Image from sfgate.com
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Arizona Diamondbacks
CHASE Field has been a happy hunting ground for Arizona early on helping the Diamondbacks go 8-1 to date. The Dodgers are yet to hit their strides going 8-10 this year and Arizona should sweep the series on Sunday.
Verdict: Diamondbacks W
Miami Marlins @ San Diego Padres
PADRES starter Luis Perdomo and his 8.44 ERA should get a workout from the Marlins hard singing outfielders. Things could get ugly.
Verdict: Marlins W
Washington Nationals @ New York Mets
EARLY MVP favourite Bryce Harper can seemingly do no wrong right now. With Harper dominating and reigning Cy Young winner Max Scherzer (2-1, 1.37 ERA) starting, the Mets are doomed.
Verdict: Nationals W
Cleveland Cavaliers @ Indiana Pacers
NEED another reminder that LeBron is still the best play in the world? Watch him and the Cavs sweep Indiana on Sunday.
Verdict: Cavs W
Houston Rockets @ Oklahoma City Thunder
WE have a series on our hands ladies and gentlemen. In order to win the Thunder will need their supporting cast to show up again for Game 4 like they did last time out. I have my doubts, but with the game in OKC they should tie the series up 2-2.
Verdict: Thunder W
Boston Celtics @ Chicago Bulls
LOSING Rajon Rondo from the lineup really hurt the Bulls and to be honest without him I think they will struggle to win another game in the series.
Verdict: Celtics W
LA Clippers @ Utah Jazz
THIS is it for Utah. If they don’t take Game 4 it will be almost impossible for them to comeback and win Game 5 on the road down 3-1, especially without Rudy Gobert. The good news for them though is that LA will be without Blake Griffin for the rest of the series. Expect the veteran Jazz to scrape a W out to tie the series.
Verdict: Jazz W
Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters
Image from tenisweb.com
Albert Ramos Viñolas vs Rafel Nadal
AS both players tune up for the French Open in less than a month they meet in the Monte Carlo final. Bad news for world #24 Ramos Viñolas, Nadal is 62-4 at the prestigious clay tournament and he should chalk up a record 10th tournament title.
Verdict: Nadal W