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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:58 PM

Wednesday's Diamond Notes

Editor's Note: Kevin Rogers is coming off a perfect 3-0 night, including underdog wins with Arizona and Pittsburgh. He is locked and loaded with a pair of Wednesday night games. Click to win!

Hottest team: Giants (8-2 last 10)

San Francisco closed out May with a 9-6 loss to Baltimore after blowing a 5-0 first inning lead to drop to 22-34 at the bottom of the NL West. Six weeks later, the Giants have won 24 of the last 39 games to creep into the discussion for a Wild Card berth, while capturing four consecutive series victories. San Francisco has knocked off good competition in this stretch, including road series wins at Milwaukee and Colorado since the All-Star break.

The Giants seek the four-game series sweep of the Rockies at Coors Field this afternoon after holding off Colorado in extra innings on Tuesday. San Francisco’s offense has exploded of late by scoring at least seven runs in nine of its 11 victories, while posting an incredible 10-1 record in its last 11 opportunities as an underdog. The Giants are 3-0 in Shaun Anderson’s last three outings, as the right-hander makes his first career start against the Rockies, who have lost seven of their past nine home contests.

Coldest team: White Sox (0-5 last five)

Three teams have yet to win a game since the All-Star break, including Baltimore and San Diego. The third squad is Chicago, whose offense has disappeared of late by scoring a grand total of seven runs in the past five defeats, while getting routed in Tuesday’s 11-0 setback at Kansas City. The White Sox have lost nine of their past 10 road contests with the last victory away from Chicago coming at Boston on June 26 as a hefty +300 underdog.

The Sox try to break through the win column tonight as Ivan Nova takes the mound. Chicago has lost three of Nova’s past four starts with the lone victory coming against the Cubs as a +165 home underdog on July 7. The Sox are 1-1 in Nova’s two outings against Kansas City this season as the right-hander allowed four runs in a 6-4 loss at Kauffman Stadium last month.

Hottest pitcher: Domingo German, Yankees (11-2, 3.40 ERA)

New York rallied past Tampa Bay last night after blowing a ninth-inning lead in Monday’s setback in the Bronx. The top two teams in the AL East square off for the third contest of a four-game set tonight at Yankee Stadium as German looks to stay on fire following a stint on the injured list. German has tossed 13 innings in his last two starts, while striking out 13 batters and not issuing a single walk as the Yankees beat the Mets and Blue Jays. German has compiled an impressive 1.98 ERA at home as the Yankees are 6-1 in his seven Bronx starts, while he defeated Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field in May as a +150 underdog.

Coldest pitcher: Nick Pivetta, Phillies (4-4, 5.81 ERA)

Philadelphia squandered a 6-1 lead in last night’s game against Los Angeles as the Dodgers rallied for an 8-6 ninth inning lead. However, the Phillies finally broke through against the NL West leaders by scoring three runs in the bottom of the ninth to edge Los Angeles, 9-8 for its first win against the Dodgers in five meetings this season. Now, Pivetta will try to give Philadelphia back-to-back victories in spite of losing three of his past four starts. Pivetta has allowed 23 runs in his last five starts, but the Phillies’ right-hander shut down the Dodgers’ lineup at Chavez Ravine last month by tossing six scoreless innings before Los Angeles attacked Philadelphia’s bullpen in an 8-0 runaway.

Biggest OVER run: Rangers (7-2 last nine)

Texas won the first two games out of the All-Star break against Houston by scoring 14 runs in those victories. The Rangers have dropped three straight, while being held to 12 runs in those defeats, as the pitching staff has been lit up of late. Since blanking the Astros last Thursday, the Rangers have allowed 8, 7, 12, and 9 runs the past four contests, as Lance Lynn suffered his first home loss of the season in Tuesday’s 9-2 setback to Arizona. Texas wraps up the two-game interleague series tonight at home with Jesse Chavez on the mound as the veteran right-hander yielded seven runs in 5.1 innings of a 9-8 win over Houston last Friday.

Biggest UNDER run: Nationals (10-1 last 11)

Washington captured the opener of the Beltway Series with Baltimore at Camden Yards last night, 8-1 to improve to 8-1 in the last nine matchups with the Orioles since 2017. The Nationals’ pitching staff continues to step up of late by allowing three runs or fewer in eight of the past 10 games, while hitting the UNDER in six straight contests. The Orioles have scored two runs or less in four of the last six games, as Baltimore is currently on a 6-2 UNDER run the past eight contests. Erick Fedde hasn’t been sharp in the last two starts for Washington by allowing seven runs in 9.2 innings of work, but the Nationals have scored four runs or more in five of his past trips to the mound.

Matchup to watch: Astros vs. Angels

Houston still owns a 10-game advantage over Los Angeles in the AL West standings, but the Angels have gained three games since the All-Star break. Following the emotional three-game sweep of the Mariners in which the Angels honored fallen teammate Tyler Skaggs with a no-hitter last Friday, Los Angeles captured the first two games against Houston by scoring 16 runs in the two victories. The Angels rallied from a 3-0 deficit in the series opener for a 9-6 triumph, followed by a six-run first inning in Tuesday’s 7-2 blowout of the Astros.

Gerrit Cole tries to stop the bleeding for Houston tonight as the southern California native picked up a no-decision in his last start at Texas. The Astros lost to the Rangers as -215 road favorites, 9-8, in spite of Cole striking out 13 batters in six innings. Houston had won Cole’s three previous starts, but the Astros are 0-2 in his last two outings away from Minute Maid Park. Cole faced the Angels back on July 6 in Houston and tossed a gem by posting seven scoreless innings in a 4-0 shutout as a hefty -240 favorite.

Felix Pena counters for the Halos, making his first start April 19. Pena has been pitching out of the bullpen the last two months, including tossing the final seven innings of last Friday’s no-hitter against Seattle. The Angels have followed the model of the Rays by starting a reliever for an inning or two prior to a bullpen-by-committee approach as Pena has tossed at least four innings of “relief” in five straight outings, although the right-hander has been the primary pitcher in those games.

Betcha didn’t know: The Marlins blasted the Padres on Tuesday, 12-7 as San Diego scored three runs in the ninth inning to make the final score look better. Miami owns a 4-1 record this season at home after winning the series opener as Trevor Richards takes the mound this evening. Richards has struggled at Marlins Park this season with Miami posting a 2-9 record in his 11 home starts, while the Fish are 0-6 in his last six starts overall.

You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at [email protected]

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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