Detroit Tigers vs Oakland Athletics (7/21/22) Starting Lineup, Betting Odds, Prediction

Happy Tarik Skubal day!

That sentence carried a lot more weight in the early season when Skubal looked like a Cy Young candidate. Recently, it’s been pretty ugly for the young southpaw.

Luckily, he’ll take on the worst team in baseball in Game 1 of this doubleheader. The A’s are really bad, and starting pitcher Zach Logue has been similarly poor.

So, with these two on the mound, which team has the edge?

Let’s dive into the starting lineups, betting odds, and my prediction for Thursday’s matchup.

Detroit Tigers vs Oakland Athletics Odds

The Tigers should be rightful favorites in this game. Skubal has too much upside and the A’s are too poor of a team.

But how much is too much juice until the A’s are rightfully undervalued?

The total seems a bit high at 7.5, even if it’s juiced to the under. These are two very poor offenses with a really good pitcher on the mound for one team, and there’s sharp money continually hitting the under.

Detroit Tigers Starting Lineup

G. Hill R
1-1 5.73 ERA

CF R. Greene L
RF R. Grossman S
SS J. Baez R
DH M. Cabrera R
C E. Haase R
2B J. Schoop R
1B H. Castro L
3B W. Castro S
LF A. Baddoo L

Detroit Tigers vs Zach Logue

Logue has shown promise in his rise through the Minor League ranks, but it seems he can be streaky. He’s put up ludicrously high numbers with Toronto’s Double-A team, and he hasn’t put anything together this season.

His 5.16 ERA is paired with an xERA north of 6.00, and he’s been worse than a replacement-level player with his -0.2 fWAR.

Logue’s Baseball Savant page paints the picture perfectly:

Screen Shot 2022 07 20 at 11.22.38 PM 1

Image credit: Baseball Savant

If there was ever a time for Logue to put it together, however, this is it. The Tigers are a poverty offense that features not a single regular lineup guy with an OPS+ above 100. Javier Baez has been a complete disaster as the much-needed power bat at Comerica – he’s slashing just .213/.251/.375 this season.

Oakland Athletics Starting Lineup

F. Montas R
3-9 3.26 ERA

3B V. Machin L
RF R. Laureano R
C S. Murphy R
1B S. Brown L
DH S. Piscotty R
SS E. Andrus R
CF S. Bolt S
LF T. Kemp L
2B N. Allen R

Oakland Athletics vs Tarik Skubal

The only offense that has been worse than Detroit this season is Oakland’s, which has posted a 75 wRC+ to Detroit’s 77.

But Sean Murphy and Ramon Laureano are both above-average hitters. Unfortunately, I think we see those guys moved as the trade deadline hits.

So, if Skubal is going to bounce back, this is his opportunity.

Since lowering his ERA to 2.15 after a seven-inning shutout performance against Minnesota on June 1, Skubal has pitched to a 6.86 ERA. He’s been slightly unlucky with his FIP sitting in the 4.50 area.

Skubal’s slider is the main weapon in his arsenal, and it’s become his most-used pitch this season. It’s been excellent all season but has seen a huge dip in inefficiency as the season has progressed.

chart 2022 07 20T234156.866

Image credit: Baseball Savant

Detroit Tigers vs Oakland Athletics Pick & Prediction

My picks: Detroit Tigers ML (-141 at WynnBet Sportsbook)

I think there’s value with the Tigers both in the first five innings and on the full-game Moneyline. I believe in Skubal against this putrid Oakland offense, and think he could get back on track after a rough series of starts.

I don’t trust the Detroit offense, either. But Zach Logue is not a good pitcher, and the Tigers have advantages in the bullpen and on defense.

All-in-all, I like the Tigers to steal this game on Skubal day.

Tanner joined Lineups to cover everything, but he has vast experience in, and unlimited passion for, Major League Baseball and NCAA Basketball. He’s a McGill University grad and former (Canadian) Division-I alpine ski racer who now spends his time drinking beer and betting home underdogs. Patrick Mahomes is a poor man’s Tom Brady.

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