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Elijah Holyfield of the Philadelphia Eagles

MLB

A Few Picks to Ponder on Thursday

Today is a great day to be a sports fan. Not only is the MLB season in full swing, but the NFL is beginning its second week of preseason games. This means that there will be no shortage of hot action on the menu. Today’s NFL preseason games could set the stage for bettors to start laying out their plans for the regular season, which gets underway on September 9.

Patriots to Host Washington

The New England Patriots are expected to put Cam Newton on the field when they take on the Washington Football Team today. Ryan Fitzpatrick will likely start for Washington as it looks for its second NFC East title, and this should be an interesting game to watch. Washington goes in as the underdog, but its strength from last year is carrying over to the new season. A determined defense, with better offensive coverage, has this game leaning to Washington. The Over/Under is at 37.5, but it seems high for a game like this. It’s the first game of a new season with both teams still trying to figure things out, which is why the Under (-115) is the way to go.

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Steelers Travel to Philadelphia

The Pittsburgh Steelers already scored a win this preseason when they took down the Dallas Cowboys last week. Now, they travel to Philadelphia to meet the Eagles to show whether or not that win was a fluke. The game against the Cowboys wasn’t a pretty one, but Pittsburgh turned up the heat when they had to. Like Washington, Pittsburgh goes in as the underdog, although the lines are much closer, and, also like Washington, should emerge victorious. The Over/Under is set right now at 36.5 and, with no big names taking the field, the Under (-115) seems to be the better option.

A Field of Dreams

Switching to the MLB action, the Field of Dreams game will be held today in a cornfield in Dyersville, Iowa. The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox meet in commemoration of the 1989 Kevin Costner film that lends its name to today’s game, but the action won’t be scripted. The Yankees (63-51) have overcome a lot of injuries to take a 17-8 record in the second half of the season, and are ready to meet the White Sox (67-48) head-on. Chicago comes into the game with a record of 13-13, an unlucky number all the way around. Even though the White Sox are favored to win, the Yankees, at +140, are a better option. They have won five of their last six on the road and continue to make tweaks to improve. The Over/Under is at 9.5, which shouldn’t be a problem for these two teams. They often pick up five or more runs a game on their own, so, collectively, the Over (-108) should be an easy reach.

Padres and Diamondbacks Face Off

The San Diego Padres (66-50) are away today to take on the Arizona Diamondbacks (35-80). These two have met already a number of times this season, with the Padres showing serious dominance. They have won six of the ten contests, and there’s little reason to believe they won’t continue tonight. The D-backs have taken four straight losses and are now batting just .188. San Diego is the heavy favorite, at -227, and shouldn’t disappoint. The Over/Under of 9 runs is well-suited for this game. The Padres have hit the Over seven times out of their last ten games with a total, and the Over (-105) is a good choice.

Rockies Head to San Francisco

The 51-63 Colorado Rockies are on a road trip, taking on the 73-41 San Francisco Giants today. This is the first of a four-game series and the Giants have a strong history of winning against the Rockies. They come into tonight’s game off a four-game win streak, while the Rockies have taken two consecutive losses. San Francisco has the league’s best record right now, as well as the best record at home (37-17). They’re a given at -180 tonight. The MLB over under stands at 7.5 runs, which is easy for this game. The Over has hit six out of six consecutively when these two teams meet and another Over at -110 tonight shouldn’t be a problem.

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Erik is a writer and a sports nut who has had the good fortune to be able to experience a wide variety of world sports action up close and personal. He enjoys staying on top of the changing world of athletics and capitalizing on his writing skills to offer a unique take on what's going on in the ever-changing athletics ecosystem.

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