Best MLB bet from Mr. FC – 7/6/22

No dice yesterday on the Padres as they went 1-11 with RISP and left 11 on base. Back on the horse today to start a new streak!

Angels -1.5 over Marlins +110

It’s Ohtani day! The Angels currently are riding a 4 game losing streak after getting swept by the best team in the league (Astros) and dropping game one of the two game series to Miami 2-1 yesterday. The Marlins are one of the hotter teams in baseball, currently on a 6 game winning streak (4 coming against the 29-54 Nationals), but I expect these streaks to come to an end tonight.

Shohei Ohtani (59.1 rolling game score) has pitched just about as well as you can in his last 4 starts, only giving up ONE run over 26.2 innings. He’s also struck out 36 over that span while only giving up 14 hits and 6 walks. Most importantly, the Angels have won by at least 3 runs in each of those games (4-1 over White Sox, 5-0 over Royals, 4-1 over Mariners, 5-2 over Red Sox).

Lefty Trevor Rogers (50.3 rolling game score) takes the hill for the Marlins, boasting a 5.56 ERA over 15 starts this season. The month of June was a huge step back for Rogers, who posted a 7.06 ERA over 5 starts and 21.2 innings of work. He also struggled mightily with his control, walking 15 batters while only striking out 21.

I love the plus money value we get here likely due to the Angels recent struggles and the Marlins being hot, but it’s a whole new ballgame and team when Ohtani is on the mound. You can take Angels ML around -160 if you feel more comfortable there, but the Angels should be able to push across at least 3-4 runs against a struggling Rogers which should be enough to cover the RL with how Ohtani is pitching.

Follow along on the Action app here (all verified picks), Twitter @itsafullcount, or Facebook.

Mr. FC

Best MLB bet from Mr. FC – 7/5/22

I’m back! After a brief writing hiatus, it’s time to jump back into things. Currently on a 6 day hot streak and 17-8 (+7.11u) the past 7 days. Keeping it simple today, one MLB play to win one unit. Let’s get it.

Padres -130 over Mariners

I love the value on the early game today (3:10 CT) that will feature a solid pitching matchup, Logan Gilbert (53.9 rolling game score) of the Mariners against Mike Clevinger (58.1 rolling game score) of the Padres.

Despite having nearly identical ERAs for the season (2.66 and 2.79), Clevinger has been the much better pitcher recently, giving up only one earned run and 5 hits over his last two starts while striking out 9 over 10 innings of work, including six shutout innings in his most recent start.

Gilbert on the other hand is trending downwards, giving up 7 earned runs and 17 hits over his last two starts over 11.2 innings. The Padres top 10 offense is also due for an explosive game (especially against a struggling pitcher), so I expect them to put up plenty of run support behind a stellar performance from Clevinger against Seattle’s 25th ranked offense in runs per game.

Follow along on the Action app here (all verified picks), Twitter @itsafullcount, or Facebook.

Mr. FC

The 2022 Royals – The good, the bad, the ugly

The good… let’s start on a positive note!

-Brady Singer’s return from Omaha

Singer looked like an ace last night, striking out 9 over 7 shutout innings while only giving up 4 hits and zero walks. He appears to have 3 big league pitches now with the success he was throwing his changeup last night, so here’s to hoping it was a “lightbulb” moment for the young righty and he’ll continue to dominate. (I know he was sent back down, assuming that’s just to free up space since he was the extra man for the doubleheader so he’ll be back when his spot comes back up in the rotation).

-Whit is back!(?)

After his head scratching start to the season, we’ve seen the Whit Merrifield of old over the past week or so, hitting .333 over the last 7 games with 7 RBIs and several extra base hits. His average is now up to .204, which doesn’t sound like much, but a solid accomplishment after the start he had. If the Royals have any hope of turning the season around, this trend will need to continue.

-Scott Barlow, Bobby Witt Jr. and MJ Melendez. Need I say more?

The bad… here we go…

-Situational hitting

Well obviously we know it’s the hitting in general, but the amount of runners left on 3rd with less than two outs and the RISP numbers are staggering. Just in yesterday’s doubleheader, the Royals went 1-23 (.043 BA) with RISP. That is not a typo although it sounds statistically impossible. Hopefully the change from Bradshaw to Zumwalt will show in the coming weeks.

Also, the fact that the Royals are averaging only 2.44 runs per game at home and a respectable 4.65 on the road makes you wonder where the disconnect is on their approach on the road versus at Kauffman.

-Hernandez/Bubic

The big knock outside of the putrid start to the season offensively has been on Cal Eldred and the Royals organization inability to develop young pitchers. After a solid enough 2021 campaign that provided hope for this season, Hernandez has put up a 9.11 ERA over 6 starts while Bubic’s ERA is up to 12.83 over 5 starts and 6 total appearances. Obviously not every pitcher is going to pan out and we can hope that Lynch and Singer keep throwing well, but it’s certainly concerning after the success Hernandez and Bubic both saw last season.

The ugly… this will be short and sweet

-Lineup

Simple. Let the kids play. The Royals seem dead set on keeping Carlos Santana in the lineup just because they screwed up and overpaid for a player way past their prime. Perhaps they were hoping for Kendrys Morales 2.0 but that certainly hasn’t been the case, so watching him and O’Hearn take away at bats from guys at the big league level already (Melendez, Rivera, Olivares when he was healthy) has been frustrating to say the least.

On top of that, Vinnie Pasquantino and Nick Pratto are waiting in Omaha, with Pasquantino having a fantastic start to the season (16 extra base hits and 29 RBIs in 35 games). I would much prefer to swap these two out for Santana and O’Hearn.

Lastly, I had the privilege of speaking with former Royals beat writer for MLB.com Jeffrey Flanagan about his thoughts on the current team, as well as some “fun facts” that I found fascinating. Here were my takeaways:

-The change from Bradshaw to Zumwalt should have the biggest impact on the young hitters, which is great to hear. He has worked closely with all of them and is highly respected throughout the organization. There has been talk of what role would suit him best (front office or coach) as the consensus seems to be he’ll be great at both, so it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.

-Matheny is still the guy and well respected in the clubhouse. If you’re one of those people calling for the manager’s head every other loss, you won’t be happy. While I personally think his lineup decisions have been questionable, he still has the faith and respect of the clubhouse and organization.

-Cal Eldred might not be the guy for the job, but the Royals would have to have a better in house alternative to make a move right now. They had that with Zumwalt, but doesn’t appear they do to replace Cal. If they aren’t comfortable with any options currently within the organization (which is a discussion for another day), then it would make sense to ride out this season and wait until the offseason to pluck someone from another team, although this does count as a stain on Matheny’s track record in my opinion.

-Dayton Moore/J.J. Picollo hierarchy

There has been a ton of rumblings on social media and local radio about how Dayton Moore is still running the show, and that couldn’t be further from the truth. The hierarchy is set the exact same way it was when Moore was GM, Dan Glass was President, and David Glass the owner. Moore did his thing as GM and made decisions, then took it to Dan and then David Glass for final approval. The same is true now, except Picollo of course is the GM doing the leg work, then goes to president Dayton Moore and owner John Sherman for approval. So for those who think Dayton Moore is still pulling the strings, you can put that theory to rest.

-Potential Greinke trade?

I initially asked Flanny about his thoughts on if Greinke retires a Royal, and he brought up a good point. Despite the no trade clause in his contract, if the Royals are out of the race by the trade deadline, Greinke could likely waive this no trade clause and the team could send him somewhere to try and get that elusive ring, while getting some prospects back in return. As it certainly wouldn’t be the haul they got from the Brewers in 2010, it would be interesting to see a Greinke trade be a part of the rebuild 2.0.

Fun Flanny Facts

Favorite alternative jerseys: All powder blue (tops and pants)

Favorite ballpark/city to visit: Twins and Mariners, Angels most underrated, Kauffman still in top 5

Favorite “under the radar” single season for a Royals player: 2015 Kendrys Morales

-This may have been my favorite tidbit I got from Flanny. Apparently Dayton Moore was dead set on signing Morales even though everyone else in the analytics department/front office was against it. I think it’s safe to say KC doesn’t bring home that 2015 World Series without him.

Thanks for reading and go Royals!

Mr. FC

Best Sweet 16 bet from Mr. FC – 3/24/22

It’s been awhile, but glad to be back! I took a little Spring Break vacation with my wife and now I’m ready to crush the rest of the tournament!

Arkansas (#18) +9.5 over Gonzaga (#1)

Both of these teams have been somewhat underwhelming in their first two games to make it here, with Arkansas beating Vermont by 4 and New Mexico State by 5 while Gonzaga handled Georgia State in the first round by 21 but needed a godly like performance from Drew Timme in the 2nd half to beat Memphis by 4.

With two experienced, well coached teams, 10 points is entirely too much to expect Gonzaga to cover with how they’ve been playing recently. Arkansas is good enough defensively (14th in the nation in AdjD) to slow down the top ranked Gonzaga offense to keep things close. When push comes to shove, if you can’t trust Gonzaga to cover double digits against Memphis, you certainly can’t expect it in the Sweet 16 against Arky and the Muss Bus.

Admittedly, I’m a tad biased because I have a +3000 future on Arkansas to win it all, and while I don’t know if they’ll pull off the upset, I think they’ll at least cover the 9.5.

Follow along on the Action app here (all verified picks), Twitter @itsafullcount, or Facebook.

Mr. FC

CBB Tourney Futures 2 of 2 – 3/9/22

This is what you came for. Big Dogs on the Big Stage, who is going to show up and who is going to be forgotten. March is where legacy is made. But whose? I did write this a couple days ago, so odds may be subject to change.

Big Ten-Illinois +380 (Michigan +2100)

My problem with the Big Ten is I know too much, and that doesn’t help when the field here is so wide open. Wisconsin, Purdue, Iowa, Michigan State, Ohio State, Rutgers, and Indiana are all on the table to be in the tournament along with my two picks for this chip Illinois and Michigan. Illinois is the best all around team in the Big Ten, Wisconsin wasn’t really supposed to be here, but they have Johnny Davis and Purdue has Jayden Ivey. But Illinois and Michigan have the true outliers in collegiate ball with Kofi Cockburn and Hunter Dickinson. They are unstoppable forces that control the paint and have to be doubled, the issue is when you double down there’s shooters at every position around them. Illinois has taken down all tasks this season and have struggled with consistency with Curbelo’s injury but I see them figuring it out as the season comes to a close and taking this one.

Big 12-Baylor +220 (Kansas +260)

Shocker to see Baylor and Kansas I know. Baylor has been one of the favorites to win the National Championship since before the season started and not much has changed. 4 game win streak, an efficient offense, an efficient rough defense, they dominate the glass, they do everything right. The Big 12 isn’t easy to come out of but they are the favorite for a reason. That being said, Kansas as the #2 option is great value and there’s no real reason to think they don’t have a reasonable chance to win this thing either. Ochai Agbaji seems to be the Big 12 player of the year, an impressive feat and similarly the same idea. Efficient everything and a very tough team to beat at any point in the season, especially March.

Pac 12-Arizona -135 (UCLA +250)

Arizona just got done walloping USC at USC so I think that convinced me. 16-2 in the conference when there’s debatably 4 other tournament teams is pretty impressive. Arizona has also just been overall dominant. They have 4 guys who average double digits and a beast 7 footer down low in Christian Koloko that patrols with 3 blocks per game. They have only lost 3 games total this season which is just insane. That being said if they don’t win, UCLA will probably be the next best option, they have so many elite players and have practically the same team that went on the Final Four run last year.

SEC-Auburn +270 (Arkansas +700)

SEC is wide open. Very streaky teams throughout the top half and the mid-tier teams all have a guy that could push a team onto the next one. While I think healthy Kentucky(+) is the best team in this conference, I don’t have them winning this tournament. Arkansas is the streakiest team and catch runs when they happen. An experienced team that has won 13 of their last 14 and are seemingly figuring it out down the stretch will have some of the longer odds at +. However, Auburn has Jabari Smith who will be a top player in the NBA Draft later this year and Walker Kessler who flies under the radar because of UK Center Oscar Tschiebwe’s dominance. Walker Kessler averages nearly 5 blocks a game. They have 4 players who average double digits and force turnovers regularly. Auburn is a very good team and is one of the only teams that I am confident can beat every team in the SEC.

CBB Tourney Futures 1 of 2 – 3/9/22

The little guys for lack of a better word, all of the tournaments that start today so you can get in on the action before they get kickstarted! These were written the other day so streaks and odds are subject to change.

Atlantic 10-VCU +440

Vince Williams Jr is someone that you will hear about in the coming weeks if you haven’t yet. He leads this hot VCU team in virtually every statistic. However, they are a well-rounded team that can have any player go off at any time, 3 guys that average double digits. They have won 11 of their last 12 and have split with Davidson who is the regular season #1, Davidson also might not be as motivated with an at-large bid possibly on the table whereas VCU is being looked at as a little brother in the eyes of the committee it feels like

Big East-Villanova +165 (Creighton +1400)

The Big East has been very impressive this year. I’m going to go with Villanova for the sole reason of ‘been there, done that’. They are a very impressive team with Colin Gillespie and Justin Moore leading the charge. Average margin of victory around 10 points, a solid defensive team that slowly builds their leads. Creighton is playing their best ball of the season right now, and of course Providence, UCONN, and Marquette are ranked or have been recently so the field is very open but I think Nova is the most consistent and has the experience this time of year.

Big Sky-Weber State +410

Koby McEwen, 6th year senior for Weber State is probably the Big Sky player of the year. This team has been on a tough stint the last couple games which is a bad sign. However, they rank 52nd in PPG and anyone can get it. They have 4 guys who average above double digits including McEwen’s 19.1, and Dillon Jones who averages a double double. You can’t leave anyone open, and they have a 9 man rotation that helps with keeping these guys fresh. A dangerous team in the Big Sky and my favorite to win it.

MEAC-Norfolk State -190

This team is what you would expect from a smaller conference champion. A knack for rebounding and playing phenomenal defense. 11-2 in the conference, not a lot of competition at the top for Norfolk State and they are undefeated at home. Which doesn’t really matter unless of course the conference tournament is at their home court.  Which it is. Expect the top team in this conference to walk to a win.

Mountain West-Wyoming +600

I think Wyoming is the best team in the Mountain West period. The Mountain West has been very enticing and has a couple teams fighting for tournament bids, so I’ll start with that. The competition is Boise State, San Diego State, and Colorado State. The tournament is also in Las Vegas which benefits 5th place UNLV as well. Graham Ike is the Mountain West player of the year, you need one of those guys. They are gritty and get to the hoop and make their free throws. While the Mountain West is wide open, I really like the Cowboys down the stretch.

Southland- Texas A&M-CC Islanders +600

Top 65 in the country in both points per game and rebounds per game. Tournament is in Texas, regardless they are the only team in the conference with a .500+ away record. They kept up with a couple good teams early in the season with Notre Dame and Minnesota on their schedule. They are small but they make up for it with their quick scoring and their ability to force turnovers. Texas A&M-CC Islanders, a mouth full, and presumably the Southland Champs.

SWAC-Alabama A&M +2200

Alabama A&M Bulldogs. I will admit, I know nothing about this conference. There is 1 team in the entire conference with a winning record overall. Very hard to pick a team to win this conference when the #1 team is tied for 437th in assists per game and is 353rd in points per game. So I went with a team that has a dude. Jalen Johnson seems to be hard to stop just looking at the numbers and they have a couple tall guys that are surely a mismatch problem in these smaller conferences. If you are a diehard SWAC fan and have to bet, I have no idea who is winning your conference tournament but this is what I’ve got for ya.

CBB Conference Tourneys – 3/8/22

*Chris Collinsworth voice* Now here’s a team that can really spoil some brackets this year. The ACC starts a day earlier than the rest of the big dogs so that’s that but a couple teams that have dominated the regular season and hope that that can translate into some March Magic.

ACC- Duke (-125)

Coach K’s send off is here, what better way to go out then winning the ACC. Already locked up the regular season in one of the weakest years we have seen the Atlantic Coast Conference. This is a team you will more than likely see cutting down the nets and on the 2 line for the Big Dance barring anything crazy happening. Paulo Banchero is one of the dudes that can will a team forward and there aren’t many threats to the crown here besides in my mind UNC (+1000) or Miami (+1100). I wrote this before the loss to UNC as well, so these odds might be more in the bettors favor as well.

Big West-Long Beach State(+480)

Okay, I watch a lot of college basketball and form a lot of opinions that I then write up and give to you guys. I do not watch Big West basketball, I am on the east coach, these games are on at 11 o’clock at night my time and they aren’t super interesting to me. So, I’m sorry.

Long Beach State was one of the better teams in this conference and have played 3 AP Top 25 teams and based on numbers they don’t seem to have a problem scoring on any team. I’ll take Long Beach State, this isn’t my most confident pick but if they win their tourney, you’ll hear from me because I am a genius.  

Conference USA-North Texas (+185)

4 losses on the season, only 1 in the conference, on a 14 game winning streak. Most of this team is the same as the one we saw beat Purdue in the tournament last year, they certainly still have that taste in their mouth heading into March. The West half of this conference seems to be much stronger, so I think the only real threat is UAB (+155) who beat them earlier in the year, but North Texas hasn’t lost since early January and I don’t expect anything to change. They have an elite defense and have a very high offensive rebound percentage which is important this time of year.

MAAC-Iona -143

Ricky! Rick Pitino is the highlight of attention as the coach leads this team into battle yet again as the favorite. Have only lost 2 games in conference play and has played many games against better teams in other conferences including a win against Alabama early in the season, they have won their last 7 entering the tourney and I don’t think they plan on sitting out the second half of March. Monmouth (+400) is a fun team to root for in this one too, games are in New Jersey right in their backyard and have a rather good away record since we are technically on a neutral site. What would be cool is Monmouth is actually leaving the MAAC next year I believe, and it would be a fun moment to just drop the mic moving away from the MAAC. So, they’re my flyer.

WAC- Stephen F Austin +550

This one appears to be anyone’s game. I like the historically annoying SFA Lumberjacks. They have an efficient offense and are top 25 in offensive rebound percentage which is an elite figure despite their size. The WAC plays in Las Vegas so no home court advantage, the whole conference isn’t great on the road. But this team is on an 8 game win streak heading in and I think the Lumberjacks are here to spoil somebodies party once again.

Best CBB bet for Monday from Mr. FC – 3/7/22

I had an average weekend, barely staying in the green Friday-Sunday. Let’s move it to 4 days in a row in the green and start a new BB streak!

Saint Mary’s (#16) -5 over Santa Clara (#68)

The Saint Mary’s Gaels and Santa Clara Broncos square up late tonight with a trip to the WCC final on the line, likely against Gonzaga if they can take care of San Francisco as double digit favorites. SM and SC split their two games during the regular season, but I like the Gaels to win and cover tonight.

First, Saint Mary’s has one of the best defenses in the entire country, ranking 9th in defensive rating and AdjD, while Santa Clara comes in at 184th and 142nd. This should help negate the Broncos biggest strength, ranking in the top 10 in the country in shooting percentage from the field and from 3.

The biggest thing that stands out to me about Santa Clara is their lack of quality wins. Their best win without a doubt was their 5 point victory at home against Saint Mary’s back on February 8th, while Saint Mary’s just handled #1 Gonzaga with ease and won by 10.

With the Gaels being the more well rounded and explosive team that has proven themselves capable of hanging with (and beating) top competition, I’m taking them to win and cover tonight and likely get a rematch with Gonzaga in the WCC Championship game tomorrow.

Follow along on the Action app here (all verified picks), Twitter @itsafullcount, or Facebook.

Mr. FC

CBB Conference Champs – 3/3/22

Starting to heat up, middle of the action. These conferences are starting their tournaments over the 3rd and 4th. Some fun hot streaks in here, along with some names you’ve been hearing over the last couple years. Per usual, my favorites to win and some value picks otherwise to keep an eye out for over the next week.

Missouri Valley Conference- Loyola +130 (Northern Iowa +490)

Loyola is the most talented team, end of story. We should be thanking Northern Iowa for beating them in their most recent game to give us these odds. Obviously, it’s March, Drake has beaten Loyola twice, Northern Iowa won the regular season title, you can’t count out anyone. However, they are the best team, and have played very good teams and held their own. This is a team that turns it on in this part of the season and does not want to risk missing the Big Dance, they should take this trophy home. Northern Iowa is also great value as a team, who won the conference and is 4-2 against the top 3 teams in it.

Sun Belt- Georgia State +270 (Texas State +430)

Georgia State is the odds on favorite to win the conference tournament despite being 3rd in the conference. They have won 9 of their last 10 including 7 straight and they are a dominant rebounding team which is very valuable this time of year, ranking in the top 50 in offensive rebound percentage. On a neutral site where these dominant home records don’t matter, it’s anyone’s game. Texas State as the regular season champ at +430 is also great value, entering this tournament on a 9 game win streak with about half of them on the road.

West Coast- Gonzaga -390 (Saint Mary’s +500)

Have to include it, if Gonzaga loses, I will be shocked. This is the worst tournament setup in college basketball and gives San Francisco, BYU, and Santa Clara, zero chance to boost their resumes and make the tournament. That being said, if anyone is going to win not named Gonzaga it’s the other team that only has to win two games.

American East- Vermont TBD

This one has a similar taste to Gonzaga, if Vermont does not win this tournament, I will be shocked, they are 24-5 overall and 16-1 in the conference. The rest of the conference isn’t even at the level below Vermont, no one being better than 10-7 in the conference. If the money goes anywhere else and this one is like a hail mary, but Albany has the next best road record, UMBC is a fan favorite as well.

Colonial- Towson +140 (Hofstra +350)

Towson is the hottest team coming into this one. Winning 7 straight and dominating on the road. They are winning in town, and they are winning out of town, finding their stride at the right time. This team hasn’t slipped in awhile with a couple early losses to good teams but not a ton of scary ones, they won the regular season and I’m following them to the end. Hofstra has good value as the #3, winning 8 of their last 9 and just from the eye test, a very efficient offense and a tough one to stop.

Southern- Chattanooga +210

Furman is the odds on favorite to win the conference tournament. I like Chattanooga, they won the regular season crown and have beaten Furman in both battles this season. They score a lot, and, in these leagues, you usually find “that guy” that proves himself as the best player in the conference and throws the team on his back. That guy is Malachi Smith. He averages over 20 per game and leads the team in assists and steals while shooting over 40% from 3. Sounds like someone you’ll hear of in the first round of the NCAA.

Summit- South Dakota State -180 (Oral Roberts +550)

Undefeated in the conference and 18 game win streak entering the conference tournament. Wow. Seems like South Dakota State should walk right in. If not, Oral Roberts has mostly the same team and that should say something when it comes to experience from this time of year. Something to sprinkle.

Best CBB bet for Thursday from Mr. FC – 3/3/22

Yesterday Fordham came out of the gate slow and trailed by 13 at the half, gave us some hope in the second half and even had a chance to hit a 3 to pull within 3 in the final seconds but missed and ended up losing by 8. Onto today and a new streak!

Illinois (#16) -12.5 over Penn State (#96)

Big 10 at home baby! Penn State is a completely different (and worse) team on the road with a 1-8 record while Illinois is 11-3 at home. Penn State just lost by 23 at home to NEBRASKA (#142) while Illinois is coming off a huge 8 point road win against Michigan.

With Penn State with little to play for as they displayed in their last game while Illinois is trying to beef up their tournament seeding as much as possible to make a deep run, I expect blowout city tonight in Champaign. Illinois is one of the most well rounded teams in the country (17th in AdjO and 33rd in AdjD vs 136th and 66th for Penn State), have the size to dominate the Nittany Lions down low, and move the ball much better to create open shot opportunities (39th in assists vs 234th for Penn State).

Follow along on the Action app here (all verified picks), Twitter @itsafullcount, or Facebook.

Mr. FC