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We’re a week removed from the Madness of March coming to an end, and fantasy baseball is in full swing (pun intended). With the NBA’s Play in Tourney not kicking off until tomorrow night, and personally not being much of a hockey fan, I took a deep dive into tonight’s MLB slate.

Baltimore Orioles vs Oakland Athletics

Game Preview & Pick:

Despite being a lifelong, diehard Yankees fan, I’ve always had an affinity for the Orioles, similar to that loveable little brother. Former #1 overall pick, Adley Rutschman, has been mashing to start the season, fulfilling the upside that made him the best catching prospect since Buster Posey (Go Noles!). Kyle Gibson isn’t the most trustworthy of pitchers, but he’s better than JP Sears, and has the advantage of facing potentially the worst lineup in baseball this season. After dropping their past 2 games to the Yankees this weekend, I think Baltimore gets back on track tonight.

Baltimore ML (-180) 1 units

Houston Astros @  Pittsburgh Pirates

Game Preview & Pick:

The Pirates have been a feel good story over the first couple weeks of the season, but the loss of shortstop Oneil Cruz to a fractured ankle yesterday is a brutal blow. I drafted Cruz in multiple fantasy leagues this season, and was expecting a big leap forward after a somewhat underwhelming rookie season, given his ridiculous tool set at the plate / on the base paths. Not having him at the top of the lineup for the foreseeable future will inevitably result in fewer runs scored, and it’s not exactly easy to score runs off of Astros starter Frambler Valdez regardless. I’m a fan of Pittsburgh starter, Roansy Contreras, and think he has a bright future, but he’s also prone to giving up free passes, despite racking up more than his fair share of K’s, and that doesn’t bode well against an extremely disciplined Houston lineup.

I venomously hate the Astros, even more than the Red Sox at this point, so I’d love to see them add another tally in the loss column, but I have a hard time seeing the Pirates coming out of this game with a W. Houston ML (-180) 1.5 units

New York Mets vs San Diego Padres

Game Preview & Pick:

The Padres are one of my futures picks to win the NL Pennant this season, and their best pitcher will take the hill tonight in Yu Darvish. They also played on Sunday Night baseball yesterday, and there’s a lot of data last season to support fading them in a Monday road game. Max Scherzer hasn’t looked like the Mad Max of old so far this season, but that’s got to change at some point, right? Scherzer was embarrassed by the Padres in last season’s wild card series, and Max just seems like the vengeful type to me. I’m tempted to play the Padres run line here, since I think we’ll see a one run game either way, but I’m going to put my faith in Mad Max getting back on track tonight.

New York ML (-135) 1 unit