WEDNESDAY PICKS: Braves, Red Sox
CUBS at BRAVES: Scheduled starters: Ted Lilly (Cubs), Derek Lowe (Braves). The Cubs are just 9-14 on the road and Lilly (6-4, 3.50 ERA) is also better at Wrigley, where he has collected 4 of his wins. Righthander Derek Lowe (6-3, 3.49 ERA) is among the NL leaders in both wins and innings pitched. The Braves have played their best ball with Lowe on the hill. ATLANTA.
RED SOX at TIGERS: Scheduled starters: Josh Beckett (Red Sox), Armando Galarraga (Tigers). Beckett was back in top form during May, allowing just three earned runs in his last 22 innings. Josh hasn’t lost since April 30 against Tampa Bay. Galarraga has been burned again by the gopher ball, allowing 28 last year and 11 in two months. The Tigers are 15-7 at Comerica Park, while Boston is 12-16 on the road. The Red Sox did win in Beckett’s last start at Minnesota and are now 1-0 with Dustin Pedroia in the leadoff spot in the batting order. BOSTON.
WEDNESDAY PICKS: Giants, ARI-LA under
GIANTS at NATIONALS: Scheduled starters: Randy Johnson (Giants), Jordan Zimmerman (Nationals). Jordan was in grade school when RJ won his first. Now the Big Unit is eyeing No. 300 and he’ll never get a better shot vs the lowly Nats. Zimmerman has allowed 5 runs or more in 4 of his last 5 starts and the bullpen is a disaster. Pop the corks. SAN FRANCISCO.
DIAMONDBACKS at DODGERS: Scheduled starters: Jon Garland (D’backs), Chad Billingsley (Dodgers). It comes down to how Garland pitches on the road, which has so far been extraordinary (2.13 ERA) compared to home (8.71). Billingsley (6-2, 2.80) has been rock solid all season for LA, which is 18-5 at home and 23-8 vs the NL West. With LA a probable huge favorite, the better play may be the total, figuring Garland for a quality start. UNDER.
Mark Mayer’s Wednesday record: 9-13. Last week: 2-1.