MLB Game Preview for July 29, 2010: Oakland Athletics @ Texas Rangers

Baseball Odds and PredictionsIf you like betting on MLB games, then this series between the Oakland Athletics and Texas Rangers is one to watch. For the first time in a long time, the Texas Rangers have put betting on NFL games in Dallas on the back-burner in Texas professional sports.

If the Oakland A’s cannot come out of this series with a couple of wins then there will be a shift to college football betting in the Bay Area really soon. The Rangers are running away with the AL West leaving the A’s and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim both eight and a half games out of first place.

The Rangers won the first game of this series, and they are riding a two game winning streak. The A’s have tried to keep pace as both the Rangers and the A’s have won seven of their last 10 games. But when the A’s are given a head-to-head chance against the Rangers, they need to take advantage of it and they are not.

To try and stop the free-fall from the MLB betting sheets, the A’s put Vin Mazzaro and his 6-2 record on the mound for this game. He comes in with a 3.45 ERA, but he has been on fire in his last five starts. He has compiled a 4-0 record in that time, and he has had a 2.12 ERA in his last five games. Mazzaro is riding some serious momentum into what could be the most important game of the season for Oakland.

C.J. Wilson takes the mound for the Rangers. He brings with him a 9-5 record, and an impressive 3.03 ERA. Wilson is a work-horse who pitched eight scoreless innings against the Angels recently in a game where he did not walk a batter. In his only appearance against the A’s this season he did not get a decision, but he pitched seven impressive innings.

The Rangers are doing what they need to do this season to win. They have the most home wins in all of baseball at 35, and they have a 24-21 record on the road. They just took three out of four from the Angels and knocked the Angels back even further in the standings. Now the Rangers have a chance to put the A’s permanently in their rearview mirror with a sweep in this series.

About the only thing the A’s can do is hope that guys like Mazzaro can hold off the potent Ranger bats long enough for the A’s to put some runs on the board. The A’s can score, and they can hit, but they have had a tough time doing both against Texas pitching this season.

The A’s play a solid game, but their pitching has been inconsistent. Dallas Braden pitched a no-hitter earlier in the season, but his record now stands at 5-7 with an ERA of 3.77. The A’s cannot get clutch hits and they leave a lot of runners on base. When you are battling a team like Texas, those are mistakes you cannot make.

Pick: Texas Rangers 3-1

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