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MLB Picks Today 6/17/23 Rays vs Padres

Rays vs Padres Picks and Predictions Today for this MLB game on Saturday, June 17th. Plus free parlay access in the Yankees vs Red Sox game.

Rays vs Padres

When: 7:15 PM ET, Saturday, June 17, 2023
Where: Petco Park, San Diego, California

Two pitchers with histories for the teams they’ll face will square off on national television Saturday as the San Diego Padres host the Tampa Bay Rays in the middle game of a three-game series.

Starting for the Padres will be Blake Snell, who was a first-round pick of Tampa Bay in 2011 and won the 2018 American League Cy Young Award while pitching for the Rays.

Starting for Tampa Bay will be Zach Eflin, who was the Padres’ first-round draft pick in 2012 and was considered one of San Diego’s top prospects but never played for the team.

Snell, a 30-year-old left-hander, is 2-6 with a 3.78 ERA in 13 starts for the Padres this season while Eflin, a 29-year-old right-hander, is 8-2 with a 3.28 ERA in 12 starts for the Rays.

Although Snell’s disappointing record is partially the product of limited run support, Eflin has benefited from a change of scenery this year after spending seven seasons with the Philadelphia Phillies. He also has been helped by the Tampa Bay offense.

Snell will face Tampa Bay for the first time. Eflin is 2-2 with a 3.38 ERA in five career starts against the Padres.

“There’s always something extra in a game where you are facing the team that drafted you,” Padres manager Bob Melvin said. “It’s how you process that.”

And while Eflin has performed beyond expectations all season for the Rays, Snell recently has shown the form that has kicked in over the second half of his two previous seasons in San Diego.

In his eight starts since the beginning of May, Snell is 2-2 with a 2.93 ERA — 15 runs allowed on 30 hits and 19 walks with 55 strikeouts in 46 innings. And in June, he has given up one run on five hits and three walks with 20 strikeouts in 13 innings.

“We’ve seen this before,” Melvin said. “This is how Blake’s always pitched in the second half. It’s just come a little quicker. His slider has come around and is sharp. The fastball is there. He has the curve and the changeup. When he’s pitching like this, getting strike one, he’s as good as any pitcher in the major leagues.”

In eight starts since May 1, Eflin has a 5-2 record and a 3.40 ERA — 19 runs allowed on 39 hits and eight walks with 51 strikeouts in 50 1/3 innings.

“He’s a really good pitcher who knows how to execute pitches at a level that’s really, really high,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said recently of Eflin. “Since the start of May, it’s been six-plus innings almost every time out. That’s very important.”

“It’s a veteran savvy approach that works for us,” Cash continued. “When he has everything going, it’s the front-door sinker going to lefties, the cutter going away to righties … a good mix.”

The Rays have won three games in a row, including 6-2 over the Padres on Friday night as Shane McClanahan earned his major-league-leading 11th win.

The loss was San Diego’s second straight after a two-game winning streak.

–Field Level Media

MLB Picks: 

For this Tampa Bay Rays vs San Diego Padres Saturday baseball game, I’m taking with the Rays -115.

Plus get Free Parlay Access Here for the New York Yankees vs Boston Red Sox game today.



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