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April 25, 2009 at 11:38 AM

Las Vegas dislikes Carlos Silva and the Mariners

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Word on the street in Vegas, or, at least amongst the oddsmakers secluded in their workrooms there, is that Carlos Silva and the Mariners will lose tonight’s game to the Los Angeles Angels. Now, normally, I don’t get wrapped up in what oddsmakers think about a particular game. Baseball results are a coin flip on any given night. But an avid blog fan, Brad Higbee, from Portland, is down here for a bit in Orange County and dropped me an email this morning after reading the odds on tonight’s game in the local paper.
And I have to agree with him. I laughed out loud when I saw the odds as well. Not because I think they are wrong — for all I know, the M’s will get destroyed here tonight. Heck, the 1927 Yankees could get demolished playing here tonight (they’d be quite old, for one thing), but that’s not the point. That’s baseball. On any given night…
The point is, the Vegas bookmakers are showing a profound disrespect for Silva and the visiting nine. That disrespect — or lack of confidence, if you will — is so evident that it’s to the point of making me laugh.
Let’s review:
— The Mariners just thumped the Angels, 8-3, last night. Seattle is now 3-1 versus Los Angeles this season and 4 1/2 games above them in the standings despite the fact the 2009 campaign is less than three weeks old.
— Silva had his best outing of the season against the Angels only 11 days ago, limiting them to just two runs on four hits over seven innings.
— The Angels are as emotionally low as you could possibly get in baseball at the moment, while the M’s are soaring in spirit, having finally produced some offense to go with standout pitching and defense received so far.
Granted, the Angels will be sending that Ortega kid to the mound for his MLB debut tonight. Don’t know too much about him, but he sure taught those Contras a thing or two in Nicaragua all those years. He’s come a long way from his days of running a junta. Even managed to get himself re-elected after being chased from office after a lone term. If you can come back from that, you can certainly fend off the likes of Franklin Gutierrez and Yuniesky Betancourt
Oh, wait, what’s that you say? I’ve got the wrong Ortega? It’s not Daniel? Oh, sorry. It’s Anthony Ortega making his debut tonight. Whoops!
Let’s see, oh yeah, Anthony Ortega. The guy who gave up nine runs over four innings in Class AAA his last time out. Has been rocked in consecutive starts.
OK, so that Ortega. Yeah, I think I see it now. No wonder the odds are what they are.
Who knows? Maybe it’s Silva’s career record at Angel Stadium. Uh, no. He’s 1-0 with a 2.33 ERA there in four outings (no idea what his FIP is). He was 6-2 with a 3.77 ERA lifetime against them heading into this year, before that well-pitched no-decision last week in the home opener.
Silva even beat the Angels in one of two outings last season, when he won only four games all year.
So, what gives?
I have no idea. Maybe somebody has a binder with a page showing the Mariners do terribly in games that start at 6 p.m. on the West Coast after winning the night before, when Silva is starting on an extra day’s rest. Or maybe the lunar calendar is off. Or maybe somebody thinks it is the Nicaraguan Ortega, not the Venezuelan one, pitching for the Angels tonight.
Or maybe, just maybe, Las Vegas is like legions of M’s fans and just has no confidence in Silva, despite the encouraging signs. I have no explanation. All I know is, the odds made me laugh. And that’s a good way to begin a Saturday morning.
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