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MLB Weekend Preview (Apr. 25-27)

Another weekend, another slate of baseball action to help you while away those lazy days.

Once more BettingSports.com has sifted through the schedule to pick out the action and storylines you’ll want to keep an eye on, including a heavy-hitting matchup in New York City.

Let’s get this thing started.

Albert Pujols may have celebrated his 50th homer, but the Angels need to start winning ballgames.

Albert Pujols may have celebrated his 50th homer, but the Angels need to start winning ball games.

American League Pick of the Weekend – Los Angeles Angels at New York Yankees

After a controversial series against arch rivals, the Boston Red Sox, the New York Yankees (13-9) return to The Bronx to begin a nine-game homestand.

First up, the Yanks will face the Los Angeles Angels (10-11) in a three-game set. The Angels had a pair of statement wins over the Washington Nationals this week, before dropping the series finale on Wednesday. Albert Pujols made headlines as he joined the 500 HR Club during the series.

But while that’s something for the slugger to be proud of, the Angels’ form is still worrying fans out in Anaheim. Mike Scioscia’s side has lost three of five and is just 5-6 over the last 11. The wins in Washington were a good sign but things would start getting a lot more comfortable if the Halos start to win on a consistent basis. Winning in New York would be a big deal too.

The Yankees meanwhile continue to pace the AL East thanks in part to solid starting pitching, something that was sorely missing last season. But with Ivan Nova opting for Tommy John surgery, things could be about to get a little rocky. Vidal Nuno has been penciled in to replace him for the time being.

Michael Pineda’s fondness for pine tar resulted in a 10-game ban, but the Yankees’ schedule means he’ll likely miss just one start.

Masahiro Tanaka (3-0, 2.15 ERA), who is enjoying an excellent start to his Major League career, is scheduled to go in Sunday night’s nationally televised game, making it well worth tuning in for.

The Pirates haven't had much to smile about so far this year. Will that change this weekend?

The Pirates haven’t had much to smile about so far this year. Will that change this weekend?

National League Pick of the Weekend – Pittsburgh Pirates at St. Louis Cardinals

After last year’s hoodoo-breaking run to the postseason, the Pittsburgh Pirates (9-14) haven’t begun the year the way they would have liked. They’ll get the opportunity to turn things around with a trip to Busch Stadium and a showdown with division rivals, the St. Louis Cardinals (12-11).

The Pirates are just 3-10 over the past two weeks and enter this series having lost three straight. However, in their first series with the Cardinals this year, the Pirates took two of three and will be eager to make a statement in this one.

Things haven’t been all that rosy for the Cardinals either. The Redbirds have lost six of their last nine, and come into this series having dropped three of four in a midweek series against the New York Mets. Having been out on the road for 11 games, Mike Matheny’s side will hope a return to the Archway City helps to right the ship quickly.

Julio Teheran has been first class for the Braves so far this season.

Julio Teheran has been first class for the Braves so far this season.

Pitching Matchup of the Weekend – Johnny Cueto (CIN) vs. Julio Tehran (ATL)

Sunday’s series finale between the Cincinnati Reds (11-11) and Atlanta Braves (14-7) – a series that looks well worth the admission fee – will see a pair of aces take to the mound as Julio Teheran (2-1, 1.80 ERA) takes the hill for the home team to face Johnny Cueto (2-2, 1.38 ERA).

Teheran has allowed 10 total runs in his first five games this season, and has allowed just one in his last two starts. After losing out in the season opener, the Braves have won in each of the Colombian righty’s last four starts, which is a good omen going forward.

After receiving very little run support in his first three starts, a run in which he allowed just five runs total, Johnny Cueto has picked up the win in his last two games, allowing just six hits and one run in the process.

With these two taking to the mound, expect this one to be a real pitching duel.

Prince Fielder and the Rangers are enjoying a strong start to the season.

Prince Fielder and the Rangers are enjoying a strong start to the season.

Rapid Roundup

The Texas Rangers (14-8) took three of four from the Seattle Mariners (8-13) last week and will look to do similar when the two lock horns at Safeco Field this weekend. Since losing the opener of that series, the Rangers have won eight of nine to climb to the top of the AL West.

Top meets bottom as the Major League-leading Milwaukee Brewers (16-6) host perennial cellar dwellers, the Chicago Cubs (7-14) in an NL Central showdown. The Brewers have won five of six after a stint of three losses in four, and will look to take advantage of a visit from a Cubs side with little promise.

The Baltimore Orioles (11-10) return home from a successful trip north of the border to host the Kansas City Royals (10-11) in a three-game set this weekend. The Orioles are in the midst of a tight AL East race while the Royals are embroiled in the tightest battle of all in the AL Central. Both could do with winning the series.

The Colorado Rockies (12-11) can gain ground on the Los Angeles Dodgers (13-10) in the NL West this weekend as the two sides meet in a three-game set at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers have been exceptional on the road but have been subpar at Chavez Ravine. Will that change in their first series with the Rocks?


Weekend Schedule

American League

Kansas City Royals at Baltimore Orioles

Tampa Bay Rays at Chicago White Sox

Oakland Athletics at Houston Astros

Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins

Los Angeles Angels at New York Yankees

Texas Rangers at Seattle Mariners

Boston Red Sox at Toronto Blue Jays

National League

Philadelphia Phillies at Arizona Diamondbacks

Cincinnati Reds at Atlanta Braves

Colorado Rockies at Los Angeles Dodgers

Chicago Cubs at Milwaukee Brewers

Miami Marlins at New York Mets

Pittsburgh Pirates at St. Louis Cardinals

San Diego Padres at Washington Nationals


Cleveland Indians at San Francisco Giants


For a full list of today’s Major League Baseball odds, click here.

For MLB Futures odds, courtesy of Bovada, click here.

For team prop bets, click here.

For player prop bets, click here.

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