Posts By: Bob Dunkel

Last weekend’s series between the Red Sox and Yankees may have taken something out of both teams. Boston, which looked like it was primed to make a run after taking three of four from the Yankees, proceeded to drop three straight in their just-completed series with the Rays. And New York, which came into last weekend’s series has won seven… Read more »

The first two games of the St. Louis-Chicago Cubs series has looked a lot like a playoff matchup with runs coming at a premium. The Cards (57-50) took game 1, 2-1, on a late Paul Goldschmidt HR and the Cubs (57-50) rebounded last night to take game 2, 2-0, behind strong pitching from Kyle Hendricks and the bullpen. The net… Read more »

The St. Louis Cardinals continued their recent trend of strong pitching and timely hitting from slugger Paul Goldschmidt to take last night’s series opener against the Chicago Cubs, 2-1. The win moved the Cardinals (57-49) into first place in the NL Central, a game ahead of the Cubs (56-50) and 1 1/2 ahead of the Brewers. St. Louis will try… Read more »

Things couldn’t get much tighter in the NL Central where the St. Louis Cardinals (56-49) and Chicago Cubs (56-49) are in a tie for first place and are just one game ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers. It’s the perfect backdrop for tonight’s series opener between the Cubs and Cards at Busch Stadium. Despite dropping the final two games of their… Read more »

Washington’s win over the Dodgers yesterday in the series finale allowed the Nationals (56-49) to pick up a game on the Atlanta Braves (62-44) in the NL East race and sit 5 1/2 games back as the two teams open up a three-game set tonight at Nationals Park. Patrick Corbin (8-5, 3.25) will get the start for Washington and comes… Read more »

The NY Mets (49-55) have been sending mixed signals about whether they will be buyers or sellers at the upcoming trade deadline. But that hasn’t stopped the team from putting together a pretty decent second half as the Mets are 9-5 since the All-Star break and still somewhat alive in the NL Wild Card chase. Their opponent today — the… Read more »

The Red Sox (58-47) have given the Yankees (66-37) a taste of their own medicine during the first two games of their weekend series as the Boston bats have lit up New York pitching for 29 runs on 37 hits. It’s been part of a bad week for Aaron Boone’s starting pitchers, who have failed to get past the fourth… Read more »

The Houston Astros and St. Louis Cardinals open up an interleague series tonight at Busch Stadium with both teams riding a hot streak. The Astros (66-38) have won seven of their last eight to push their lead over Oakland to eight games in the AL West standings. The Cardinals (55-47) have used an 11-3 run since the All-Star break to… Read more »

If the Boston Red Sox are going to make a run in the AL East, this weekend’s four-game set against the Yankees at Fenway is critical. The Bosox (56-47) trail New York by 11 games in the standings and were pummeled by the Bronx Bombers the last time the two teams met in late June in London. The Yanks (66-35)… Read more »

It took over half a season, but the New York Mets finally got a big game from Robinson Cano last night as the veteran second baseman produced the first 3 HR game of his career.  Cano accounted for all five runs as the Mets took the opener in their series with the Padres, 5-2. The two teams will be back… Read more »

The San Francisco Giants continued their impressive turnaround with a come-from-behind 5-4 win over the Cubs last night. The victory, which was their ninth in the last 10 games, moved the Giants to a game over .500 (51-50) and in the thick of the NL Wild Card race. San Francisco will continue its series with Chicago tonight as ace Madison… Read more »

The Yankees and Twins open up a battle of division leaders tonight at Target Field. AL East-leading New York (64-34) is looking to rebound from yesterday’s 8-4 loss to Colorado, while AL Central-leading Minnesota (60-38) rallied to beat Oakland in the bottom of the ninth, 7-6, and salvaged a series split. Yankees starter CC Sabathia (5-4, 4.06) is 12-1 in… Read more »

The Washington Nationals were hoping that ace Max Scherzer could make the start for tonight’s series finale against the Braves. But inflammation in the shoulder will keep him sidelined and the Nats instead will have to rely on Joe Ross (0-1, 11.05) to take the mound. After making 17 appearances out of the bullpen, this will be Ross’ first start… Read more »

The Oakland A’s avoided their first back-to-back losses since early June with last night’s 5-3 win over the Twins. The victory also moved the A’s (56-42) into sole possession of the second wild card spot in the AL and just one game behind Cleveland for the top spot. Oakland will try to make it two straight over the AL Central-leading… Read more »

Last night’s 6-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins was a rare stumble for the Oakland A’s. Bob Melvin’s team came into the series with a six-game winning streak, and is 36-17 since May 16 and 12-3 over the last 15 games. The A’s (55-42) will try to bounce back tonight as they continue their series against the Twins (59-36) at… Read more »

The Washington Nationals have clawed their way back into the NL East race and have a chance to make a major dent in Atlanta’s lead as they open a four-game set tonight against the Braves at SunTrust Park. The Nats (50-44) have won 13 of their last 17 to move to within 6 1/2 games of the Braves (58-39), who… Read more »

With the July 31 MLB trade deadline approaching, players are not only playing for their current teams, but could be showcasing their talents for a future team. One of those players is Arizona pitcher Robbie Ray, who has been reportedly garnering interest from a number of playoff contenders. Ray (7-6, 3.81) will be on the mound tonight as the Diamondbacks… Read more »

San Francisco’s Brandon Crawford enjoyed a Rocky Mountain high yesterday as the Giants shortstop hit three HRs and drove in nine runs as part of a doubleheader sweep over the Rockies. The outburst has been reflective of the Giants play of late as Bruce Bochy’s team has won 10 of its last 12. They’ll try to keep the momentum going… Read more »

There’s never been a question the NY Yankees offense can produce a lot of runs in a hurry. Rather the uncertainty with the team has been whether the starting pitching can hold up. Judging by the Yankees’ weekend series with Toronto, that doesn’t seem to be much of a question either. New York (59-32; No. 3 in Dunkel’s latest MLB… Read more »

No pitcher had a better first half of the MLB season than the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu. The Korean left-hander posted a 10-2 record and league-leading 1.73 ERA, which earned him a start for the NL in the All-Star game. Tonight, Ryu will open up the second half in Boston against David Price (7-2, 3.24) as the Dodgers and Red Sox… Read more »

The Atlanta Braves started the second half of the MLB season the same way they ended the first half by playing winning baseball. The Braves (55-37) opened up a series in San Diego last night with a 5-3 win over the Padres that gave Atlanta a 25-10 record since the beginning of June. They’ll try to keep that hot streak… Read more »

The unofficial second half of the MLB season gets cranked up for real today with a full slate of games headlined by a rematch of last year’s World Series between the LA Dodgers and Boston Red Sox. The Dodgers (60-32; No. 1 in the Dunkel MLB rankings) sit comfortably atop the NL West standings with a 13 1/2-game lead over… Read more »

Despite a rash of injuries that have sidelined stars such as Jose Altuve and George Springer for significant chunks of time, the Houston Astros are right where they want to be. Leading the AL West by 7 1/2 games and ranked No. 3 in the latest Dunkel MLB rankings, the Astros (57-33) kick off the second half of the MLB… Read more »

The WNBA serves up four games today starting with a morning tip-off between the Connecticut Sun (9-5) and Atlanta Dream (3-10) at 11 a.m. and capped off with the Minnesota Lynx (8-6) heading to Chicago to face the Sky (7-7) tonight. To get Dunkel’s picks for these game and the full WNBA schedule, click HERE. The second half of the… Read more »

Winning streaks have been the theme of recent MLB All-Star games and right now it’s the American League that is enjoying one. The AL has won six straight mid-summer classics, including last year’s 8-6 victory in Washington. The venue moves to the American League tonight as the NL and AL will square off in the 90th All-Star Game at Cleveland’s… Read more »

Despite losing three straight at home to the San Diego Padres over the weekend, the LA Dodgers head into the All-Star break with the top Dunkel MLB rating at 19.343. That gives the Dodgers a fairly comfortable lead over a trio of AL teams starting with the Minnesota Twins (18.663) at No. 2 and followed by the Houston Astros (18.532)… Read more »

Heading into tomorrow’s All-Star break, five of the six MLB division leaders look to be fairly secure with the one exception being the NL Central race. The Chicago Cubs hold a narrow half-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers and only 4 1/2 games separate them from the last-place Reds. The Cubs (47-42) will wrap up their first half this afternoon… Read more »

The Philadelphia Phillies and NY Mets are both struggling to stay in the thick of the NL East race. Last night, the Mets struggled more as closer Edwin Diaz blew eight solid innings from Jacob deGrom and opened the floodgates to a five-run ninth inning in a 7-2 Phils’ victory. The win was only the ninth for Philadelphia (46-42) in… Read more »

Masahiro Tanaka had gone at least six innings in nine straight starts for the Yankees before his trip to London. In what turned out to be a slugfest of a series, Tanaka lasted only two-thirds of an inning while giving up six runs in the first game against the Red Sox. Tonight, Tanaka (5-5, 3.74) will try to bounce back… Read more »

Independence Day serves up its usual fare of baseball all day starting with the first pitch between the Marlins and Nationals at 11:05 a.m. Another NL East battle will take place later in the evening as the Atlanta Braves (51-36) wrap up their series against the Philadelphia Phillies (45-41) at SunTrust Park. The teams have split the first two games… Read more »

The LA Angels staged an emotional comeback last night a day after the death of pitcher Tyler Skaggs. The Angels (43-43) overcame a 3-1 deficit against the Texas Rangers (46-39) with two runs in the fifth inning and four more in the sixth en route to a 9-4 win. Those two teams will be back on the field at Globe… Read more »

The New York Yankees enjoyed their trip to London to the tune of 29 runs on 31 hits while sweeping both games against the Red Sox over the weekend. The Bronx Bombers return to New York tonight to start another rivalry series against the Mets at Citi Field. James Paxton (5-3, 4.34) will take the mound for the Yankees (54-28),… Read more »

The race in the NL Central couldn’t be much tighter heading into the last week before the All-Star break with just 5 1/2 games separating all five teams. Two of those clubs — the Chicago Cubs (45-39) and Pittsburgh Pirates (39-43) — will open a big four-game set beginning tonight at PNC Park. Adbert Alzolay (1-0, 2.08) will get the… Read more »

The Atlanta Braves are slowly starting to pull away in the NL East. Yesterday’s come-from-behind 5-4 win over the Mets moved Atlanta to 6 1/2 games over the Phillies and 8 over the Nationals in the division race. Winners of six of their last eight, the Braves will go for the series sweep over the Mets tonight on ESPN’s prime… Read more »

Arizona’s Zack Greinke (8-3, 3.08) is having another stellar season and gets a chance to pitch for the first time this season against the Giants at Oracle Park — a place where he has enjoyed much success. Greinke is 5-0 with a 1.37 ERA in seven career starts in San Francisco and has also done it with the bat, racking… Read more »

The Philadelphia Phillies (43-38) looked to be spiraling out of control after getting swept at home by the Miami Marlins last weekend. But a bounce-back three-game sweep over the New York Mets has restored some good feeling in the Philadelphia lineup as they head to Miami for a revenge series against the Marlins (30-49). Vince Velasquez (2-4, 4.40) will get… Read more »

The Oakland A’s and LA Angels have taken advantage of some recent stumbles by the Houston Astros to at least get within shouting distance of the front-runners in the AL West. The A’s (43-38) have won seven of their last nine, while the Angels (41-40) have won six of their last nine, including a just-completed two-game sweep of the Reds…. Read more »

Manny Machado’s return to Baltimore last night turned out to be a productive one as the former Oriole homered and drove in two runs to help the Padres win the series opener, 8-3. Machado and the Pads (39-40) will try to make it a sweep today as they wrap up the short two-game set against the O’s (22-57) at Camden… Read more »

Even with slugger Joey Gallo sidelined (oblique strain), the Texas Rangers have continued to find ways to win and moved to six games over .500 (42-36; No. 11 in Dunkel MLB Rankings) after taking two of three from the White Sox over the weekend. The Detroit Tigers (26-47) haven’t found much of anything productive lately and are in the midst… Read more »

Former Cy Young winners and one-time teammates Clayton Kershaw (7-1, 2.85) and Zack Greinke (8-3, 2.91) face each other tonight as the Dodgers and Diamondbacks open up a series in Arizona. The two have faced each other only once before as Kershaw bested Greinke, 7-1, in April of 2017 at Dodger Stadium. Overall, the Dodgers (54-25; No. 1 in latest… Read more »

The San Francisco Giants probably didn’t think they were acquiring the next Babe Ruth when they traded for platoon outfielder Alex Dickerson earlier this month, but after two games it looks like that’s what they got. The 29-year-old Dickerson had six RBI — four on a grand slam — in his Giants debut on Friday and followed that up with… Read more »

The New York Yankees are starting to get healthy and that is spelling trouble for the rest of the MLB world.  Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton recently returned from injuries to a lineup that also just added slugger Edwin Encarnacion from Seattle. The result has been a seven-game winning streak for the Yankees (48-27), including yesterday’s 4-1 victory over the… Read more »

The San Diego Padres completed their recent homestand with four straight wins, including a three-game series sweep over the Brewers that pushed their record back above .500 (38-37).  Andy Green’s team will try to keep the momentum going tonight as Padres open a road series against the Pittsburgh Pirates (33-40). Eric Lauer (5-6, 4.60) will take the mound for San… Read more »

There haven’t been many opportunities to win for the Baltimore Orioles (21-53), who ran their current losing streak to eight straight while being outscored by the Oakland A’s, 27-7, in their just-completed three-game set. But they open a series tonight against the Seattle Mariners (32-46), who have also had their struggles. The M’s had dropped 14 of their last 21… Read more »

The NY Mets (35-38) finally found a way to slow down the Atlanta offense last night as Jacob deGrom struck out 10 and limited the Braves (43-31) to just a pair of ninth-inning solo HRs in a 10-2 victory. New York will see if it can take the series tonight as the two teams wrap up a three-game set at… Read more »

High scores are nothing new for the Colorado Rockies, but even their weekend series against the San Diego Padres was extraordinary. The Rockies and Padres combined for 92 runs — the most for a four-game series in MLB history — while Colorado’s Charlie Blackmon set another record by rapping out 15 hits. Doubtful those numbers will be approached outside the… Read more »

There’s no shortage of power in the New York Yankees lineup as the Bronx Bombers have now homered in 19 straight games following Cameron Maybin’s HR in yesterday’s 10-3 win over the White Sox. But just for good measure, the Yankees went out and acquired AL HR leader Edwin Encarnacion from Seattle over the weekend. Encarnacion is expected to join… Read more »

Seattle’s rebuild is in full motion after the Mariners (30-44) followed up their trade of Jay Bruce to the Phillies with a deal that sent AL HR leader Edwin Encarnacion to the Yankees yesterday. With the Mariners’ ship seemingly taking on water, perhaps it’s appropriate that they send Mike Leake (5-6, 4.26) to the mound this afternoon for the series… Read more »

The NY Mets (33-36) lost two games in a matter of four hours yesterday as they dropped the completed game from Thursday, 5-4 in 10 innings, and followed that with a 9-5 loss in the regularly scheduled game against the Cardinals (35-33). Playing just one today, the Mets will try to break through with a win in the series as… Read more »

Cubs pitchers were roughed up last night for four HRs as the Dodgers (46-23) overcame an early three-run deficit to knock off Chicago (36-30), 7-3, in the series opener. Joe Maddon will turn to Kyle Hendricks (7-4, 3.00) tonight try to slow down the LA offense. Hendricks has been Chicago’s most consistent starter of late and comes in with a… Read more »