Rays vs. Athletics, 07/17/17 - Prediction & Preview

Game Snapshot

#924 Oakland A's
vs.
#923 Tampa Bay Rays

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Image licensed from USA Today Sports

Tampa Bay Rays (49-44 SU, 49-44 RL, 53-38-2) vs. Oakland Athletics (42-50 SU, 46-46 RL, 51-39-2).

MLB: Monday, July 17, 2017 at 10:05 p.m. EST

The Line: Tampa Bay Rays -115/Oakland Athletics -105. Total: 9.

The Oakland Athletics and Tampa Bay Rays will begin a three-game series when they square off at O.co Coliseum in Oakland on Monday night. Tampa Bay had won four in a row before losing its finale at the Angels on Sunday. The Athletics are coming off a three-game sweep of Cleveland.

Logan and Longoria

The Rays could have extended their winning streak to five games but left the bases loaded in the top of the ninth inning and lost to the Angels 4-3 on Sunday. Still, they are holding down one of the two AL wild-card spots after finishing 68-94 last year. Logan Morrison has homered in two straight games to push his career-high to 26 for Tampa Bay, and teammate Evan Longoria has hit safely in nine consecutive contests, going 13-for-33 with seven RBIs in that stretch.

Right-hander Jake Odorizzi is taking the mound for Tampa Bay on Monday. Odorizzi is 5-4 with a mediocre 4.63 ERA so far this season. The 27-year-old has struggled of late, with only one quality start in his last five outings, a stretch that has seen his ERA balloon from 3.59. Odorizzi most recently faced Boston last Friday, when he went just 4.1 innings and allowed seven runs on eight hits and three walks in an 8-3 loss.

An A for the A’s

The Athletics are not playing like a last-place team of late and look to continue their surge when they host the playoff-contending Rays. Oakland has won seven of their last nine games overall after sweeping three from American League Central-leading Cleveland following the all-star break. The Athletics scored 17 runs in the three contests against the Indians and rookie Matt Chapman recorded his fifth extra-base hit in the series with a double in Sunday’s 7-3 victory, which extended the team’s home winning streak to five games.

Daniel Gossett will oppose Odorizzi on Monday. Gossett is a disappointing 1-4 with a 6.23 ERA so far this year. The right-hander, who is a rookie and former Clemson University standout, has made six starts since joining the rotation in mid-June. Gossett most recently pitched on July 9, when he allowed three runs to Seattle on five hits and two walks in 4.1 innings during a 4-0 shutout loss.

MLB Trends

The Tampa Bay Rays are:

  • 9-2-1 Over in their last 12 games against the American League West
  • 15-6-1 Over in their last 22 games against starters with WHIPs over 1.30
  • 7-0 Over in Odorizzi’s last seven starts

The Oakland Athletics are:

  • 4-1 Over in their last five home games
  • 7-2 Over in their last nine games against the American League West
  • 13-6 Over in their last 19 games against teams with winning records

Both of these pitchers have struggled in 2017 and Odorizzi has been especially bad on the road, with a 4.91 ERA in such situations. The over is 9-2-1 in the Rays’ last 12 against the American League West, 15-6-1 in their last 22 against starters with WHIPs over 1.30, 7-0 in Odorizzi’s last seven starts, and 4-1 in his last five road starts. It is also 4-1 in the Athletics’ last five at home, 7-2 in their last nine against the American League West, and 13-6 in their last 19 against winning opponents. Additionally, the over is 4-0 in the last four meetings between the two teams. Look for this one to go over the total.

Pick: Over 9

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Ricky Dimon

A 2006 graduate of Davidson College, Ricky is a freelance sports writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. He has previously worked with various websites in the sports handicapping industry and is generally a fan of going with the hot hand while in most cases showing a willingness to take favorites and give the points. Beyond the four major sports, Ricky is an avid tennis fan—and writer—and covers the ATP Tour on a daily basis.