Today's Top Picks: Three MLB best bets, including two underdogs that will win at home
Also, watch SportsLine on CBS Sports HQ live at 6 p.m. ET for all today's best bets
We have to wait until September 2020 for the rule to go into effect, but the last week of baseball has been an excellent reminder of why MLB had to change the 40-man roster rules in September. For those of you who remain unaware, MLB teams can have up to 40 players on their active roster in September. Next year they'll be allowed a maximum of 28.
While watching a game last night, I was reminded how important this change was when both teams began going to their bullpens in the fourth inning and bringing in relievers to face one or two hitters and then going to the next guy out of the 'pen. When rosters are cut to a maximum of 28 next September, managers won't have the ability to make so many changes, and it'll make the games less interminable.
Here are three games I plan on sitting through tonight because I'll have money on them. All odds are via William Hill.
1. Arizona Diamondbacks at New York Mets: Over 8.5
I'm not sure why this total is as low as it is. I can only assume it's because Robbie Ray is on the mound for Arizona, but while his overall numbers are good, Ray still walks too many hitters, doesn't get many ground balls, and allows a lot of hard contact. My initial reaction was to fade Ray and Arizona, but the Mets are favored, and I don't like the price on them. Instead, I'll take the over, as it's going to be hot and humid in New York tonight. That should help all those fly balls travel a bit further than usual.
DFS millionaire Mike McClure has cashed big for SportsLine followers this year, and he's back with his optimal tournament lineups for Wednesday's action. See his picks, including why Dexter Fowler is a must play, only at SportsLine.
2. Washington Nationals at Minnesota Twins: Twins +135
Stephen Strasburg is the best pitcher on the slate tonight, and I'm more than happy to fade him as a road favorite against one of the best offenses in baseball. The Twins offense is in a bit of a slump right now, but their hard-hit rates and flyball rates are still fine. Their BABIP, however, is at .242 over the last week and should rebound. Strasburg can be dominating, but he isn't untouchable, and the Nats bullpen is terrible. I'm not passing up on the Twins at this price.
SportsLine expert R.J. White is 20-5 in his last 25 Buccaneers picks, and he's released a play for Thursday night's matchup with the Panthers. Get that pick and much more NFL advice by heading over to SportsLine.
3. St. Louis Cardinals at Colorado Rockies: Rockies +150
What if I told you there was a starting pitcher tonight in Coors Field who has a strikeout rate that is 24 percent below league average for a starter with a walk rate that's 22 percent worse than league average, and he was starting for the favorite in the matchup? Does that seem like the kind of pitcher you want to back in Coors? Because it sure doesn't feel that way to me. Don't get me wrong, Colorado's Antonio Senzatela is nothing to be excited about, but given the video game nature of Coors Field, I'll happily fade Dakota Hudson and the Cardinals at this price.
The Greenbrier Classic starts Thursday, and the SportsLine Projection Model has simulated the tournament 10,000 times and built a projected leaderboard. Head to SportsLine to see who beats out Bryson DeChambeau for the title.
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