This article is part of our MLB Picks series.
RotoWire record: 13-16, -2.61 units
Yankees -1.5 (-110) vs. Rangers - Game 1
Cole started the year pretty shaky, but appears to be back on the beam, striking out 15 batters while walking only three over his last pair of starts (12.2 scoreless innings). Meanwhile, Rangers starter Dane Dunning is coming off a sharp effort vs. Atlanta, but note the difference in his home/road splits. Dunning has a 2.65 ERA at home, but it balloons to 6.00 on the road. This essentially matches what he did last year, as he posted a 3.09 ERA at home, but only a 6.39 on the road (including a rough start at Yankee Stadium where he failed to make it out of the third inning). Going a bit further, the Yankees are 10-3 at home and 12-5 vs. righthanders. Looks like a nice edge for the Yankees.
Blue Jays first 5 innings -0.5 (-125) at Guardians
Manoah is one of the pitchers I try to key on, and he's looked great this year, striking out 25 in 25 innings while walking seven in his five starts (and only four in his last four starts). Manoah hasn't allowed more than two earned runs in any start his year, and has had the lead after five innings in all but one start. He might even be worth a Cy Young look at his current 12/1 price.
Mariners first 5 innings -0.5 (+112) vs. Rays
Sunday marks the MLB debut of the well-regarded George Kirby, who pitched well during spring training as he battled Matt Brash for the final Mariners rotation spot. In the meantime, Kirby has crushed it at Double-A, posting a 1.82 era and 0.89 whip while striking out 32 batters (five walks) in 24.2 innings. He also has an edge in that Tampa Bay hasn't seen him before, which should help him get through te lineup once or twice before the Rays batters can start making adjustments. By contrast, Tampa Bay opener Ryan Yarbrough got knocked around pretty good in his only start this year, allowing nine baserunners and five earned runs in just 2.1 inning vs. Oakland. Nice edge for the Mariners with their rookie hurler on the mound.