Tom Stryker Tom Stryker
If you missed out on Thursday's 2-0 sweep that saw the Reds and Angels pick up a couple of huge road wins, then be sure grab Stryker's investments for Friday. One of those plays is Tom's NL Massive Best Bet. Do it.
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Matchup Selection W/L
MLB  |  Aug 01, 2014
Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Arizona Diamondbacks
Pittsburgh Pirates
Play Type: Premium

Off a pair of road losses at San Francisco and Arizona, Pittsburgh will take the field on Friday night with a sense of purpose. The Pirates are still in the hunt for the NL Central title (only 2.5 games behind first place Milwaukee) and they need wins over bottom-feeders like the Diamondbacks to keep pace.

In order to get back on track, Pitt will hand the pearl to right-hander Edinson Volquez. There is certainly nothing wrong with Volquez's numbers this season. With 121.0 innings in the bank, Edinson has been tapped for only 52 earned runs and 113 hits. That sums up to an 8-7 record and a respectable 3.87 ERA. Evening starts have been kind to Volquez too. With the lights on, Edinson has surrendered only 28 earned runs and 67 hits in 73.0 frames. That equates to a solid 6-3 mark and a decent 3.45 ERA.

Left-hander Vidal Nuno will hit the bump for 'Zona. Since coming over from the Yankees, Nuno has made four starts for the Diamondbacks and been crunched for nine earned runs and 20 hits in 23.1 innings. That adds up to an 0-2 record and a 3.47 ERA. Arizona is 0-4 is Vidal's four starts. Fatigue could be a factor for Nuno tonight too. In his last performance at Philadelphia, Vidal threw a season-high 117 pitches.

There are some decent angles that support this investment. Pittsburgh has won 16 of its last 22 facing a sub .500 foe, 15 of its last 22 priced as chalk and 17 of its last 25 facing teams from the NL West. On the flip side, Arizona has dropped 18 of its last 26 priced as a home pup.

In order to compete for the division title, the Pirates need to pick up their play on foreign soil (23-30 away). At 48-61 including 22-33 at home, the Diamondbacks should be easy prey. Take Pittsburgh with Volquez. Thank you and best of luck, Tom Stryker.

Matchup Selection W/L
MLB  |  Aug 01, 2014
Los Angeles Angels vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Los Angeles Angels
Play Type: Free

Losing starting pitcher David Price (to Detroit) has to hurt. Tampa Bay was making a run in the AL East and now, without the services of their ace left-hander in the rotation, the Devil Rays could very easily crash and burn. Facing a strong 64-43 LA Angels team is definitely not what the Rays needed at this point in time either.

Off yesterday's thrilling extra-inning 1-0 road win at Baltimore, Los Angeles will ask right-hander Matt Shoemaker to keep things going. In his last start at home against Detroit, Shoemaker was in a zone allowing no earned runs and three hits in 7.0 innings of work. Matt fanned five and issued no walks in the Halos 4-0 shutout victory. In his last four starts combined, Shoemaker has been nicked for only eight earned runs and 20 hits in 22.1 frames. That equates to a decent 3-1 mark and a sound 3.22 ERA.

Appearing in just his third game this year for the Rays will be veteran righty Jeremy Hellickson. In a pair of home starts against Boston and Kansas City, Hellickson pitched well allowing one earned run and 11 hits in 9.0 innings. Even though Jeremy couldn't pick up a win in either game, his 1.00 ERA is certainly worth noting. Hellickson has pitched gems against the Angels too. In four career starts against the Halos, Jeremy has assembled a noteworthy 3-1 record and a respectable 1.57 ERA.

With both pitchers in decent form, the team trends could very easily be the deciding factor in this game. If that's the case, LA has the advantage. Los Angeles has won 44 of its last 58 facing a sub .500 opponent, cashed 24 of its last 32 after scoring two runs or less and tasted victory in 40 of its last 58 as a favorite. In comparison, Tampa Bay has dropped six of its last seven priced as a home underdog and seven of nine facing a greater than .500 foe with Hellickson holding the pill.

The emotional loss of Price is going to be difficult for the Rays to overcome. The Halos have a great arm on the mound, plenty of sticks at the plate and they smell blood. Take Los Angeles with Shoemaker. Thank you and best of luck, Tom Stryker.

Matchup Selection W/L
MLB  |  Aug 01, 2014
Seattle Mariners vs. Baltimore Orioles
Baltimore Orioles
  at  BMAKER
Play Type: Premium

After getting shutout in last night's extra-inning home loss to Los Angeles, Baltimore will come ready to play on Friday night.

Southpaw Wei-Yin Chen will toe the rubber for the Orioles. Since getting roughed up at home against Tampa Bay on June 28th, Chen made four starts in the month of July and threw very well. Facing the Mariners, A's, Nationals and Rangers, Wei-Yin was touched for only eight earned runs and 24 hits in 24.2 innings of work. That breaks down to a spotless 4-0 record and a sound 2.60 ERA. Chen has been outstanding with the lights on too. At night, No. 16 has been nicked for just 36 earned runs and 98 hits through 93.1 frames. That's good enough for an 8-1 mark and a solid 3.47 ERA.

Countering for the visiting Mariners will be young lefty Roenis Elias. In his last five starts, Elias has struggled big time allowing 18 earned runs and 29 hits in 24.2 innings. After the math, that equates to a 1-3 record and a soft 6.56 ERA. The bright lights at night have given Roenis fits too. With the moon shining, Elias has been hammered for 49 earned runs and 83 hits in 83.0 frames. That translates into a weak 4-8 mark and an elevated 5.31 ERA.

A number of quality team trends support this Best Bet too. Baltimore has won seven of its last eight after scoring two runs or less last, 20 of its last 27 coming off a loss and seven of its last nine facing a greater than .500 foe with Chen on the mound. History will be on the O's side as well. Seattle has dropped 13 of its last 18 in this series including seven of its last nine in Baltimore.

If the Orioles want to stay on top in the super competitive AL East, then they better take care of business inside Camden Yards. Take Baltimore with Chen. Thank you and best of luck, Tom Stryker.


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A professional handicapper at Team Stryker Sports since 1984, Tom Stryker offers you 25 years of experience. Tom is known for his strong work ethic and his commitment to delivering the best analysis available. With regards to style, Stryker likes to use the perfect blend of two decades of experience as well as emotional, statistical, and technical support to back up his selections. Back in the early 90's, Tom helped assemble one of the most powerful football and basketball databases in the nation. This incredible piece of software holds over 100 profitable situations with ATS records topping 90 percent. Located in the Midwest just a few miles from the University of Notre Dame, Stryker is tuned into the Irish as well as the Big Ten and MAC Conferences. College Football, Major League Baseball as well as the NBA and NFL playoffs are considered his strengths. But keep in mind a profitable run can happen at any time in any sport when Stryker gets into one of his capping zones. In 2000, Tom reached the ultimate peak when he bested over 100 other professional handicappers, and finished the season ranked No. 1 in college football (28-13 for 68.3% record) as monitored by the Sports Monitor of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. In 2001, Tom incredibly repeated that feat by finishing No. 1 in college football with a solid 24-15 for 61.5% mark! To date, Stryker is the only handicapper to win back-to-back college football handicapping titles as documented by the Sports Monitor. Since going pro, Tom has recorded numerous other Top 10 finishes. Tom is also the editor and publisher of the Pre-Game Report - one of the best football newsletters in the industry! Vince Lombardi, one of the greatest football coaches ever, once said, �The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender.� When you do business with Tom Stryker you can expect three things: experience, professionalism and effort.