July 15, 2008

2008 MLB All-Star Game Preview

Tuesday, 8:15 pm Eastern – FOX

SBG Global Opening Line: American - 138 , Total 10 Flat

The 79th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be played at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday night and should be a classic on and off the field. A total of 47 Hall of Fame players are expected to participate in pre-game ceremonies. It should be quite an event in New York. SBG Global reports that early MLB betting has the public taking American at Home.

The defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox had seven players selected to the game although David Ortiz will not play due to a wrist injury. The surprising selection was Boston catcher Jason Varitek but the players’ have a say in who makes the All-Star team and Varitek is a lot more popular than White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski who is more deserving.

With the All-Star game being played in New York, American League manager Terry Francona may choose to start Mariano Rivera. The Yankee closer would be a great choice since the starting pitchers in the All-Star game only go 2-3 innings anyway. Rivera has 23 saves this season and would be a very popular choice as the American League starting pitcher. He has not started a game since his rookie year.

SBG Global Current Line: American - 145 , Total 10 Under -120

On the other side of the field, National League manager Clint Hurdle is leaning toward starting Carlos Zambrano of the Cubs. Zambrano has the league’s third best ERA and is set up perfectly to start the game since he last pitched on Wednesday. “If he wants to start me for the All-Star Game, I would do it,” Zambrano said. “It would be an honor for me.” Zambrano pitched one inning in 2004 and was selected to the 2006 team but did not appear.

Francona and Hurdle are the two managers for the game because their teams won their respective leagues last season and met in the World Series. A late change to the National League lineup has Rockies outfielder Matt Holliday replacing injured Alfonso Soriano of the Cubs. Holliday was already on the roster but was not a starter. The two players added from the fan’s vote for the All-Star game were Corey Hart of the Brewers and Evan Longoria of the Rays.

MLB betting stats show that the American League has dominated the All-Star game recently. They are unbeaten in the last 10 games at 9-0-1 with the ridiculous tie in the 2002 game thrown in there. Four of the last six All-Star games have gone over the total as the teams combined to score 14 runs in 2002, 13 in 2003, 13 in 2004 and 12 in 2005. The 2006 game was a low-scoring 3-2 game while last season the American League won 5-4.

Pick: National League finally wins one! 3 units

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