Under today’s picks I have two premium plays available. For a free play selection we are going to look at the total in Diamondbacks and Cubs. Both of these teams are not offensive juggernauts, therefore the total lies at 7.5 runs. On the mound are two pitchers that have far exceeded pitching expectations.

Josh Collmenter came out of the bullpen to be a saving grace for the Diamondbacks. At stretches in May and early June he was there only reliable pitcher. Collmenter though does not have overpowering pitches or durability. He typically can pitch a maximum of six innings.

For the Cubs, Jake Arrieta has been pitching out of his mind. He has come close to a no hitter and had a fantastic June. He has been almost non hittable. Even though he gave up three runs in his last start it was off of just four hits.

Post All-Star breaks you’ll usually see pitching wane considerably. Mark Buerhle saw his digression before the break. I think you’ll start to see that with both Arrieta and Collmenter. Arrieta has assumed the role of Cubs dominant pitcher with the departure of Hammel and Samardzija. The mess in Arizona has been well-documented and needs no further elaboration.

Though you may have a hard time watching both the Cubs and Diamondbacks offense, sit back and wait for that half inning outbreak. This total will surpass 7.5.


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