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Well sports fans, we are nearly two weeks into the baseball campaign, and wow! This is shaping up to be one of the most exciting seasons in years.

The Red Sox, Astros, Angels, Mets, Braves, Pirates, and Diamondbacks have started to distance themselves from their Division rivals. It might surprise many of you that the Top-10 squads (as of print) leading the majors in Team Batting Average are the Braves, Pirates, Mariners, Angels, Mets, Athletics, Red Sox, Astros, White Sox, and Giants.

There is no debating baseball is America’s National Pastime. Below are some key dates for you to remember for the season:

April 15 – Jackie Robinson Day;

April 17-18 – Twins vs. Indians @ Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, Puerto Rico;

May 4-6 – Dodgers vs. Padres in Monterrey, Mexico;

June 4-6 – 2018 MLB Draft;

July 13-17 – All-Star Week;

July 29 – Hall of Fame inductions, Cooperstown, New York;

July 31 – Non-waiver trade deadline;

September 1 – Active rosters expand to 40 players;

September 30 – Final day of regular season;

October 23-31 – 2018 World Series.

Another topic that can’t be debated is I am 3-1 in GamingToday with my MLB releases. Please keep in mind many things can and will change from press time to release that will affect the line of a baseball game. Trends, streaks, and stats can change, but for sure, keep a keen eye out for off-pitchers and weather.

Here are two more of Joe D’s Best Bets for the next few days:

Tuesday Winner

Reds at Phillies: Last season, the Reds were one of the worst road teams in baseball. This season, they picked up just where they left off, donning a 1-3 away mark, averaging just 3.00 RPG as a visitor. Homer Bailey gets the road start here, as the RH is 0-2 with a 4.22 ERA. Taking 2 of 3 over Miami, Philly has shown some signs of life.

Aaron Nola gets the nod at home. The RH owns a 2.61 ERA in two starts, with two no decisions. The Reds are 3-7 in Bailey’s last 10 starts vs. the Phillies and 5-16 their past 21 games overall. The Phils are 6-2 in Nola’s last eight overall starts and 6-2 in their past eight games at home. WIN     PHILADELPHIA

Wednesday winner

Braves at Nationals: Washington is riding a five-game losing skid. There is much need for concern as the Nats are 0-3 at home, where they are accounting for only 3.00 RPG at Nationals Park. If you recall, despite winning the NL East, the Nats had a better record on the road than at home last season. I’ve never been a big fan of AJ Cole. The RH (4-8, 5.23 career stats) got shelled by Atlanta in his first start, just 8 days ago, lasting 3.2 IP, and yielding 10 runs (all 10 ER’s) on 10 hits, in the loss.

The Braves are a very respectable, 6-3 and send Brandon McCarthy to the hill. The RH is 2-0 with a 3.97 ERA in two starts this season. Atlanta is 5-2 their last 7 vs. the NL East and 4-1 in their past 5 overall. Washington is 0-5 in their last 5 vs. the NL East and 0-4 in the past 4 at home. WIN     ATLANTA

Good luck, and have a winning day.

2018 MLB (2-0-0): 5-1-0

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