Brandon Maurer has a 6.99 ERA and 1.66 WHIP and has given up 22 earned runs in six starts this season. He’s only averaging 4.2 innings per game. Both lefties and righties hit him equally well so far in his career. He has good stuff, but he hasn’t quite learned how to pitch. I don’t think it will come tonight against the Angels.
(I’m staying away from the two early games)
Nelson Cruz – BAL – Well, I used to save Cruz for his great splits against lefties, but he’s hitting everyone right now and Brad Peacock is everyone. He has now hit 50 home runs in his last 45 at bats. Wait, let me check my math. That’s not right, but he does lead the majors with 19 and has hit seven in his last nine games. Add in the fact that righties hit for more power in Houston and that Peacock gives up a 1.44 HR/9 rate to righties and Cruz’s chances of continuing his home run display look good.
George Springer – HOU – After a nice three game stretch Ubaldo Jimenez has hit the skids once again with 10 earned runs in his last two games. On the other hand George Springer has been on an absolute tear with six home runs and 13 RBIs in his last six games.
Justin Upton – ATL – Jake Peavy has given up 19 runs in his last four games (22 innings) and has only had one game where he hasn’t given up a home run. I usually like to choose Upton against lefties, but he’s been tearing the hide off of all pitching of late and Boston is a great place to hit.
Albert Pujols – LAA – Pujols should be able to get to Mr. Maurer without much trouble. He hits righties for a better wOBA than lefties and has hit him well in the past. He’s in a mini-slump and Maurer is just the guy to help him out of it.
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Devin Mesoraco – CIN – Mesoraco has been hitting lefties and righties nearly equally so far this season as far as OPS goes (R- 1.071, L – 1.078) and has hit all six of his home runs off righties. Collmenter gives up over a home run a game to righties and at home.
Adam Lind – TOR – James Shields has been a bit inconsistent of late and gave up a couple home runs in L.A. his last time out. Lind has multiple hits in five of his last nine games and is hitting righties this season for a 1.130 OPS. Toronto has been hitting so well I think they get to Shields in this one.
Adrian Gonzalez – LAD – Gonzo has always been a righty killer and that has played out this year with him hitting 11 home runs in 139 at bats against righties and one home run in 62 at bats against lefties.
Martin Prado – ARI – Prado is hot right now with eight RBIs in his last six games and back-to-back games with a home run. Tony Cingrani has given up five homers in his last three games (16 innings) to go along with 11 earned runs. Cingrani has good stuff, but he’s still a work in progress and Prado hits lefties for a great .353 wOBA.
Xander Bogaerts – BOS – The X-Factor has eight hits in his last five games and he’s been hitting lefties well all season. Mike Minor pitches worse on the road and Fenway isn’t exactly the best place for pitchers.
Dan Haren – LAD – Haren has been solid at home this season with double-digit FanDuel points in each game. The Pirates are averaging just 3.13 runs per game on the road and strike out at a higher rate than any team on the road.
R.A. Dickey – TOR – Dickey started the season horribly, but has turned things around in good order against some pretty good hitting teams. He also is killing it at home with a 2.89 ERA, 5-1 record in seven starts. The Royals continue their hitting woes
Matt Shoemaker – LAA – Shoemaker has yet to give up over 2 runs in his three starts this season. He has a 2.81 ERA in those three starts and faces a pitcher who has been getting hit hard this season. If he can get his innings I like his chances for the win.