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And So It Goes....

Overall: 7-1-0 (0.875)
Basis Function: Daubechies4

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Saturday, April 11, 2009

April 11th, 2009 Picks

Sweet, 2-0-0 today bringing my streak to 5. My first pick was Ian Poulter to score lower than Tom Watson and Steve Wilson. Steve Wilson took the early one stroke lead with a birdie on the 2nd hole. Wilson gave the lead back by taking a bogey on the par-3 4th hole. Watson and Wilson were the next to deviate from par with bogeys on the 5th hole giving Ian Poulter a one stroke lead. On the 7th hole Poulter went to one over par as he and Watson both took a bogey. Poulter and Wilson were tied going into the 9th hole with Watson down a stroke. Wilson hit a bogey while Poulter hit a birdie and Poulter took the prop by two strokes while finishing at even par for the front 9.

My next pick was the St. Louis Blues at home. They took a 2-0 lead after the first period, converting 2 of 3 power plays and and limiting Columbus to 5 shots on goal. Columbus scored four minutes in to the second period but St. Louis was able to get a goal back four minutes later. The third period went scoreless and the Blues picked up a 3-1 victory to clinch a playoff spot. Columbus took 17 shots on goal for the entire game and had zero power play opportunities. St. Louis spent two minutes in the box and converted a third of their power plays. So on to the picks.

1) Hull City @ Middlesbrough – Hull City win or draw
2) Ryuji Imada vs. Stuart Appleby – Imada cards a lower front 9 score
3) Carolina Hurricanes @ New Jersey Devils – Carolina
4) Toronto Blue Jays @ Cleveland Indians – Toronto
5) How many holes under par will Tiger Woods card: 5 or more or 4 or less – 4 or less
6) Pittsburgh Pirates @ Cincinnati Reds – Cincinnati
7) Geoff Ogilvy vs. Phil Mickelson – Mickelson cards a lower front 9 score
8) Chad Campbell vs. Kenny Perry – Campbell cards a lower third round score
9) Boston Bruins @ Buffalo Sabres – Buffalo
10) Kyle Busch vs. Carl Edwards – Busch places lower
11) Boston Red Sox @ Los Angeles Angels – Los Angeles
12) New York Mets @ Florida Marlins – Florida
13) Pittsburgh Penguins @ Montreal Canadiens – Montreal
14) Ottawa Senators @ Toronto Maple Leafs – Toronto
15) Boston University vs. Miami(OH) – 6 goals or more
16) Phoenix Suns @ Minnesota Timberwolves – Minnesota
17) San Francisco Giants @ San Diego Padres – San Diego
18) Chivas USA @ Los Angeles Galaxy – Chivas USA

1) Aside from defeating a distracted and resting Liverpool in February Middlesbrough have not won a match at home since defeating Manchester City in October of 2008 and Manchester City are easily one of the worst road teams in the English Premier. Don’t put too much stock in that win at home versus Liverpool, Hull City played Chelsea to a 0-0 draw at Anfield around the same time. A lot of top 5 English Premier teams underperformed from the middle of February to the beginning of March because of the attention paid to European competition. Every year teams are trying to avoid relegation and lose 2 points or all 3 at home in must win matches against ‘relatively weak sides’. And every year three clubs are relegated. Here is what tells me Hull City is the best bet here. Hull City hasn’t lost a game on the road this season to anyone lower than 10th in the tables. They have collected more points on the road than they have at home, 20 to 14. Hull City are 7th place in the Premier League in terms of points earned on the road. Middlesbrough have lost and drawn to far worse road sides, e.g. Portsmouth D 1-1, West Brom L 0-1, Newcastle United D 0-0, Sunderland D 1-1, Bolton Wanderers L 1-3. Check these teams’ road records, they are not performing as well on the road as Hull City.
Confidence: W2 streak or less

2) Ryuji Imada finished 13th on the money list last year and Stuart Appleby finished 22nd. Imada did play in two more events but won an average of $12,000 more per event. He had two event wins and two other top 5 finishes compared to Appleby finishing in the top 5 twice. In this year’s Masters Imada carded a lower front 9 score by one stroke in the first round and by two strokes in the second round. In the past 8 years Appleby has never improved his front 9 score from the 2nd round to the 3rd round at Augusta. I think Appleby will score anywhere from 2 under to 2 over which I think is generous since 2 under would be an improvement. I also think Imada will score from 3 under to 2 over which would be a four stroke slide. With each score in that range being equally probable Imada has a 50% chance of winning, Appleby has a 33% chance of winning and there is a 17% chance they score the same. I think Imada is a better golfer at this point in their careers and that will overcome Appleby’s experience at Augusta.
Confidence: W2 streak or less

3) Carolina is 9-1-0 in their last 10 games and 3-2-0 in their last 5 on the road. New Jersey is 3-6-1 in their last 10 games and 2-1-1 in their last 5 at home. During that time Martin Brodeur has started each game. He has a 3.3 GAA and has made saves on 88.9% of shots on goal in those 10 games. Cam Ward will not be starting tonight for Carolina, with Mike Leighton taking the net in his place. Leighton has 18 starts on the season and a 2.91 GAA with saves on 90% of the shots taken at him. New Jersey are favored at -120 in Vegas and Carolina is at even odds.
Confidence: W1 streak or less

8) Kenny Perry hasn’t played in the Masters since 2005. This is his 9th Masters appearance. He’s been cut 5 times and his best finish was tied for 12th with 5 under in 1995. It’s the only time he’s finished under par. This is Chad Campbell’s 6th Masters appearance and first since 2007. He has been cut 3 times and his best finish was tied for 3rd in 2006 at 4 under par. Both of these golfers will probably tank out of the top 10 after today but Campbell has finished higher than Perry more often and more recently.
Confidence: W2 streak or less

11) The Boston Red Sox are -130 favorites with the Los Angeles Angels being +110 underdogs. Home underdogs are 12-7 in Major League Baseball so far this season. Contrary to the listing on the streak board Joe Saunders will be starting for Los Angeles. Saunders is 7-0 in April from ‘06 to ’08 with a 2.04 ERA in over 61 innings pitched. He’s 4-0 against the Red Sox in that time with an ERA of 2.89 in just over 37 innings pitched. He’s 15-9 at Angel Stadium with a 4.77 ERA in 203 innings. Penny is also pretty good in April but the last time he pitched against the Angels he got rocked for 8 runs in 5 innings, but that was in 2007.
Confidence: W2 streak or less

12) Florida has terrific odds at home here being -150 favorites and New York being +130 underdogs. Florida is starting Nolasco on the mound, considered to be one of their best starting pitchers. He has struggled a bit against the Mets in the past, however, with a 6.28 ERA over the past 3 years in 47 innings pitched. He has pitched more innings against New York than any other team and his ERA is higher versus the Mets than any other team. New York is starting Livan Hernandez who has not fared any better against Florida. He has allowed 23 runs in nearly 29 innings pitched. This is Florida’s home opener and being the favorites with Nolasco on the mound should give them the advantage.
Confidence: W3 streak or less

15) The odds on the over/under here are pretty much dead even. I watched the game with Vermont and Boston University and Boston has an incredible team. They were getting takeaways at an incredible rate which will create scoring opportunities. Madore started as goalie for Vermont and he is going to be an NHL starter in a few years. In one of the Vermont defeats Boston U had 41 of their 44 shots saved by Madore. Against Miami(OH) Boston should be able to score more easily and for every goal Miami(OH) may score Boston will up the intensity to score another.
Confidence: W2 streak or less

16) Phoenix is favored by 3 points in this game. This could easily be another game where Phoenix puts 13 different players on the court by half time. Minnesota is a team like Memphis who are just trying to get wins at the end of the season to get a feel for what it feels like and for their home fans.
Confidence: W1 streak or less

17) Well I must admit I’m not too familiar with these teams yet or the pitchers on the mound. The lines have moved in favor of the Padres since they opened last night, however. Currently San Diego are favored at -160 and San Francisco are +150 underdogs. In terms of percent chance winning with the bookmakers’ profit margins being accounted for that is the Padres at 60.6% and the Giants at 39.4%. Here a few pitching stats. Peavy has a 2.71 ERA in PETCO park in the past 341 innings he has pitched there. Last year Peavy was 0-2 against the Giants with a 3.60 ERA in 15 innings and 10 strikeouts and 2 walks. Both losses were at PETCO Park. Sanchez pitched 12 innings against the Padres and had a 1.50 ERA last year. The odds are terrific but Sanchez is a solid starter against San Diego for the Giants.
Confidence: W1 streak or less

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