Hottest team: Mariners (4-0 past four overall, 8-1 past nine road games)
The Mariners have won four straight games to get themselves right back into the wild-card mix, sitting 1 1/2 games back of the Royals for the final postseason spot in the American League with two months to go. Seattle is back in the black in run differential at plus-4, and they’ve improved to 23-26 on the road thanks to an 8-1 record over their past nine away from home. The M’s have gotten themselves back into contention against the dregs of the league, going 5-0 over their past five road games against teams with a losing record and 5-1 over the past six inside their division. They have also fared well when Ariel Miranda is on the bump, going 9-3 over his past 12 outings against AL West foes and 4-1 over his past five road assignments.
Coldest team: Braves (0-6 past six games, 0-4 past four at home)
The Braves continue their home series against the high-octane Dodgers, and that’s not good for their chances to snap their losing skid. Atlanta has dropped six in a row to fall well out of contention after an impressive run had pulled them within three games of .500. The Braves have won just one of their past six against NL West foes, they’re 0-5 in their past five tries against a right-handed starter and they’re are just 2-5 over Julio Teheran’s past seven outings. They’re also 4-9 in Teheran’s past 13 tries against teams with a winning overall mark while going 6-22 across his past 28 home outings. In addition, the Braves are 1-4 over their past five home games against the Dodgers, while going 0-8 in Teheran’s past eight starts against L.A.
Hottest pitcher: Jason Vargas, Royals (13-4, 3.00 ERA)
Vargas looks to help the Royals salvage their series and avoid the broom in Charm City before heading back home to face the red-hot Mariners for four. The Orioles have surprised everyone, taking the first two games of the series by a combined score of 9-3. The Royals have won 20 of the past 26 starts by Vargas while going 12-2 over his past 14 outings against teams with a losing overall mark. The Royals have also won eight of their past 10 against right-handed starting pitching, and they’re a perfect 7-0 over their past seven games on a Wednesday, although that last stat can mostly be taken with a grain of salt.
Coldest pitcher: Matt Moore, Giants (3-10, 5.74 ERA)
Moore enters Wednesday’s interleague home start against the Athletics looking to avoid his 11th loss of the season. He has served up 75 earned runs over 117 2/3 innings, fourth-most in the majors and third-most in the National League behind teammate Jeff Samardzija (76) and San Diego’s Clayton Richard (80), two pitchers with one more start than Moore. Opponents are also hitting a robust .293 against Moore this season, with the Giants 3-9 over his past 12 outings and 1-5 over his past six at home. The Giants are also a dismal 7-15 in their past 22 home games vs. RHP and 5-12 in their past 17 overall against righties.
Biggest UNDER run: Brewers (18-6 past 24 overall)
The ‘under’ continues to cash on a regular basis for Milwaukee, hitting in each of their past four games and 18 of the past 24 (75.0 percent) outings. The under has also hit in six in a row at home, 5-0 in their past five outings at Miller Park against a right-handed starter and 21-7-1 in their past 28 overall vs. RHP. They’re also 6-1 across Brent Suter’s past seven starts overall and 4-1 in Suter’s past five starts againts a team with a losing record. The under has been hitting for St. Louis on a regular basis lately, too, going 4-0-1 across their past five overall, 3-0-1 in their past four vs. LHP and 6-2 across Luke Weaver’s past eight outings.
Biggest OVER run: Giants (12-5-2 past 19 overall)
There have been plenty of runs scored by the Giants, and against the Giants. As such, the over is 12-5-2 over their past 19 games, while going 5-2-1 across their past eight games at AT&T Park in San Francisco. In addition, the over is 7-0-1 in their past eight games against AL West foes while going 9-2-1 in their past 12 against teams with an overall losing mark. As mentioned, Moore has struggled overall this season, but oddly enough the ‘under’ is 7-2-1 over his past 10 starts at home. However, when these Bay Area neighbors get together there are usually plenty of runs, as the ‘over’ is 7-0-1 in the past eight meetings.
Matchup to watch: Rockies vs. Mets
The Mets and Rockies tangle in the middle game of their set with Chris Flexen making his second major league start. He got tuned up for four runs – three earned – and five hits with four walks over just three innings in his debut against the light-hitting Padres in San Diego on Thursday. Now, his second assignment is at Coors Field in Denver, facing a Rockies team averaging 6.29 runs per game, easily the most in the majors. Tyler Chatwood enters with a 6-11 record and 4.78 ERA over 19 starts and one relief appearance, checking in with 62 walks across just 107 1/3 innings, second-most free passes issued in the majors. Wednesday’s game looks like a potential score-fest.