Texas Rangers vs. Detroit Tigers MLB Pick – July 19, 2021

By | July 19, 2021

Rangers vs Tigers Pick: Detroit Tigers (-105)
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The MLB baseball season is about to heat up as we’re less than two weeks away from the July 30 Trade Deadline. As teams evaluate where they’re at as either buyers or sellers, there’s some important baseball games to be played before the end of the month.

With 13 games on this Monday afternoon/evening, let’s get in on the action with a Rangers vs. Tigers MLB Pick from Comerica Park in Detroit – with betting odds backed by the experts at BetUS!

Rangers vs. Tigers Betting Odds

Odds Texas Rangers Detroit Tigers
Moneyline Odds -105 -105
Runline Odds -1.5 (+150) +1.5 (-170)
Over/Under Over 9 (+100) Under 9 (-120)

Rangers

The Rangers are sure sellers as we move closer to the trade deadline which means plenty of eyes will be on right-hander Kyle Gibson as he looks to avenge a rough outing his last time out against these Tigers in his final start prior to the All-Star break.

After getting tagged for five earned runs in just one-third of an inning on Opening Day in Kansas City, Gibson went on to surrender three earned runs or fewer in 15 consecutive starts with two earned or less in 14 of the 15.

That streak was snapped by these Tigers on a July 7 start in Texas where Gibson yielded five earned runs in 6.1 innings of work. He’s actually surrendered 13 hits, six earned runs, two homers and five walks over his last two starts spanning 12 innings of work.

That said, he’s still going to be an attractive piece for contenders thanks to a 2.29 ERA on the season and while his 3.47 FIP, 3.89 xFIP and 4.16 SIERA are above that figure, there’s lots to like here.

Gibson’s ground-ball ways continue this season with a 50.9% ground-ball rate on the season, a figure that’s helped him limit home runs to just 0.71 home runs per nine innings. He’s also put quality control on display by way of a 2.74 BB/9, a figure tha would go down as a career-high if the season ended today.

Statcast is largely a fan of his work as they put him in the league’s 77th percentile in xwOBA and xERA, 73rd in xSLG and 91st in barrel rate, the latter of which also helps explain his stingy home run ways.

Can the Bats Back Him up?

Gibson is 6-1 on the season in 17 starts, but the fact that he’s had so few decisions speaks to the lack of run support this Rangers offense has given him.

For the season, the Rangers rank 25th with a .299 wOBA on the season, but that number actually falls slightly to a .294 on the road which sits 21st league wide. The splits are also fairly even in terms of lefties vs. righties as they sit 24th with a .298 wOBA versus right-handed pitching as they gear up to face a righty to start this one tonight.

The bats are also ice cold entering this series in Detroit. After scoring three runs or fewer in five of seven entering the All-Star break, the Rangers scored just two runs over a three-game series loss to the Blue Jays, getting shutout in both ends of a double-header yesterday.

That’s now actually two runs or fewer in four straight and one run or fewer in three of their last four. They have scored more than four runs just once over their last 10 games.

They’ll certainly need the bats to perk up to end a stretch of nine losses in their last 11 tonight.

Pitching Problems

Not only did the Rangers score just two runs in two games against the Jays, their pitching staff was pounded for 10 runs in both outings, getting outscored 20-2 in those two contests.

The starting pitching has been getting touched up of late as well, but the bullpen has not held up their end of the bargain, either.

For the season, this Rangers bullpen sports a 4.46 ERA on the season that ties them with the Washington Nationals for 19th in the league, although their solid 4.17 FIP and 4.10 xFIP does point towards some positive regression moving forward. With roughly middle-of-the-pack batted-ball figures in terms of hard-hit rate and barrel rate, perhaps this Rangers bullpen will enjoy a better second half, although it’s a group that’s been ravaged by costly injuries from the outset of the season.

Tigers

After taking a four-game sweep at the hands of the Minnesota Twins entering the break, the Tigers bounced back and swept the Twins away in their first three games coming out of the break.

It’s yet another step forward from an improving Tigers team that has come together this season under new manager A.J.Hinch. A big part of their future is in that pitching staff, a staff that is currently being led by rookie right-hander Casey Mize as he takes the mound for the 18th start of the season.

The 2018 No. 1 overall pick didn’t come out of the gate too hot to start the season, but has found a nice groove of late. Mize has not allowed more than three earned runs in each of his last 13 starts, allowing two earned runs or fewer in eight of those 13 including in each of his last three starts.

That stretch of rock-solid work has lowered Mize’s ERA to 3.59 on the season. Home runs have been an issue with 1.42 HR/9 on the season while he doesn’t miss a ton of bats with just 7.27 strikeouts per nine innings. That said, it’s his control and ground-ball-inducing ways that gears him towards success with just 2.55 walks per nine to go along with a 50.5% ground-ball rate.

One thing to note with Mize is the Tigers’ plans to limit his innings this season. He has been hit with a pitch count in each of his last two starts including four innings his last time out against Texas. Two Joey Gallo solo homers accounted for all of the damage off Mize his last time out in Texas in an effort he largely cruised through before reaching his planned pitch count.

It’s not clear if they will follow suit with Mize tonight, but he’s certainly been pitching extremely well since a few rough outings to begin his season.

Brushed-up Bats

After dwindling towards or at the bottom of the league in offense over the last few seasons, not much was expected from a Tigers offense that was in transition again here this season. After a disastrous month of April that saw them rank dead last (by a mile) with a .263 wOBA, it’s been on the up and up since as the offense is hanging around the big boys these days.

Since May 1, the Tigers are tied with the Philadelphia Phillies for 13th with a .318 wOBA. That’s also ahead of clubs such as the Yankees, A’s and Rays. Since June 1, that offense has climbed to a .325 wOBA, also tied for 13th alongside the Atlanta Braves, but also ahead of the Boston Red Sox.

Here in the month of July, the Tigers once again rank 13th with a .317 wOBA, ahead of the Yankees, Twins, Red Sox and Reds.

MLB Stadium

They scored just one run in their first victory over the Twins, but scored 12 over their next two including seven in yesterday’s series-clinching sweep. Over their last 10, they’ve averaged 5.1 runs per game.

They aren’t a team that hits a ton of home runs, but rather one that’s using their speed to create runs. The Tigers rank fourth in baseball with 59 stolen bases this season, but also second only to the San Diego Padres with 52 since May 1. The Padres have 56 in that time.

Against right-handed pitching like Gibson for the season, the Tigers rank 18th with a .303 wOBA, but clearly the work has been far superior of late.

Area of Need

While the Tigers’ starting pitching and offense has performed well above expectations especially when accounting for the myriad of injuries to both groups, the bullpen remains an area that needs to improve for this team to get fully competitive for next season.

After hovering around the league’s basement over the last few seasons, that’s once again been the case this time around as the Tigers rank 27th with a 5.29 bullpen ERA on the season. It’s also not much of a fluke as per their 4.73 FIP and 4.56 xFIP that both rank near the bottom of the league despite being notably superior to their surface figure.

While that group has also improved since a disastrous April, they still rank 27th with a 40.7% hard-hit rate against as well as 25th with an 8.6% barrel rate to boot.

If there’s a positive to be had, it’s their work in that sweep of the Twins. The Tigers’ bullpen pitched a shutout in two of those three games and allowed just one earned run in 10.2 innings throughout the series.

We’ll see if that stout work can continue into this one tonight.

Rangers vs. Tigers MLB Pick

While most of his work against the Tigers in his career came as a member of the Twins, Gibson just hasn’t fared well against Detroit despite their light-hitting ways in recent years.

In 23 career starts and 24 appearances against the Tigers spanning 130.2 innings, Gibson has been hit for a 5.51 ERA. In 12 starts and 13 appearances at Comerica Park spanning 69.2 innings, Gibson owns a 5.04 ERA. Obviously, his trend of poor work with the Tigers continued his last time out.

While he’s obviously enjoying a career year, I do see some regression on the horizon. Mize’s peripherals also spell some regression and the Tigers’ bullpen has largely been a volatile group, but the Tigers’ offense is by far the superior group right now.

Pick: Tigers
Odds: -105
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Let’s also simply note that the Tigers are 24-22 at home this season while the Rangers are a brutal 13-33 on the road which is the worst road record in the American League and third-worst in the Majors ahead of only Colorado and Arizona.

The Tigers are also 33-27 over their last 60 games since May 8. This team is playing much better baseball than everyone outside of Detroit is giving them credit for, so let’s grab the Tigers here on the moneyline at -105 over at BetUS.com!

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