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Didn’t go as planned last night. I think what’s going to happen is I’ll watch the first few minutes of a Hall of Fame game, get bored, and then look for something else to watch. Instead, the weather delay changed everything. Instead of watching the start of the game, I watched the last 10 minutes of the fourth quarter.

When I opened the game, Las Vegas was up 20-3 and it looked like we were safe in the under-30.5 game. The Raiders followed with a quick touchdown to make it 27-3. It wasn’t long before the Jaguars — all night on the offensive end — drove for 86 yards in nine games for pointless touchdowns that killed post players.

An NFL game went down and we’ve had our first painful loss of the season. Oh well, better get it out sooner, right?

OK, so the NFL is back last night and the Premier League is back this weekend. In addition to a few MLB games tonight, I have some football picks to share to get you through the weekend. Let’s hope we avoid more painful losses.

All time East, all odds via Caesars Sportsbook

🔥 Hot ticket

Dodgers Padres, 10:10 PM | TV: MLB Network

Latest odds:

Los Angeles Dodgers – 160

  • key trends: The Dodgers have won 40 of their last 55 games at Dodger Stadium.
  • Pick: Dodgers (-160)

When the Padres traded Juan Soto and everyone else at the deadline, they realized they weren’t going to win the NL West this season. It’s not impossible, but with the Dodgers up 12.5 games, they’ll have to play like the worst team in baseball to do it. No, the Padres acted because they knew the route through the National League to the World Series would go through the Dodgers.

We’ll see it for the first time tonight. While it’s hard to argue that adding players like Soto (and others San Diego picked) doesn’t make the Padres much better than they were, I still think the Dodgers are the better team. Furthermore, these moves make Padres overvalued in the market.

Tony Gonzolin isn’t a household name, but he’s one of the best pitchers in baseball this season. He has excellent control, misses shots and avoids hard touches. The Padres sent Sean Manaea to the mound, and while he hits more batters than Gonsolin, he also walks more, misses fewer bats and gives up long balls more easily. That’s not great news considering the Dodgers’ wRC+ against southpaws is 117 (5th in MLB), a 0.333 wOBA (5th) and a 3.44% (5th) home run percentage.

The Padres have improved a lot, but tonight might not matter too much.

Here’s what SportsLine has to say about the game: Looks like I’m not the only one who believes you should fire on the Dodgers tonight.

💰 Featured


⚾ Major League Baseball

Royal Red Sox, 8:10 p.m. | TV: ESPN+

Latest odds:

over 9

Choices: Over 9 (-120) — Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City is one of many baseball parks that vary depending on the weather. Overall, it consistently proved to be one of the hardest parks to hit home runs (only Comerica Park was harder). But that all changes in summer when the city of fountains begins to bake in the sun.

As the KC heats up, the ball will fly, and tonight’s forecast calls for temperatures in the 90s. That’s good news for us, as the pitching game has two pitchers who won’t miss the racket. Boston’s Josh Winckowski has a 5.00 ERA in nine starts and a 14.1 percent strikeout rate. Kansas City veteran Zack Greinke has an even lower strikeout rate of 13.4 percent. The balls will be put into use tonight, and when they appear, they will be moving long distances. Runners will circle the base. Running will score points. We will honor tickets.

Key trends: In the last 21 meetings at Kaufman Stadium, the score was 14-5-2.

⚽ Football

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Bournemouth vs Aston Villa, Saturday, 10am TV: Peacock
Pick: Aston Villa (+104)——
Some sportsbooks are offering odds on the first manager to be sacked and Bournemouth’s Scott Parker may be worth a bet. Parker helped Bournemouth return to the Premier League after failing to keep Fulham ahead two seasons ago, but he is not happy with the club’s summer as it prepares for the Premier League. In short, Parker doesn’t think Bournemouth have the talent and depth needed to survive a season in the league and keep their place. Usually, it doesn’t go well for a manager to say “we’re not good enough” before the season starts.

Meanwhile, Aston Villa continued to strengthen their squad throughout the summer, attacking early to address several serious needs in midfield (Boubacar Kamara) and upgrading at centre-back (Diego Carlos). Philippe Coutinho has also returned after a semi-successful loan spell last year, with manager Steven Gerrard planning to challenge for a European place this season. That might be too much to ask, but if you only look at the table after Gerrard took over from Dean Smith in December, Villa did finish ninth in the league last year. While Europe may be a pipe dream, three points against Bournemouth on the opening weekend is not.

Newcastle United v Nottingham Forest, Saturday, 10am | TV: Peacock
Pick: Newcastle (-150) –
We have a theme: betting on an ambitious mid-tier club facing newly-promoted players in the opening week. Newcastle didn’t have the summer it or its fans had hoped. All the new money from the new owner didn’t immediately lead to a flock of superstars to the north of England to join the Toon Army, but the squad has improved a lot from a year ago and should be off to a good start.

Nottingham Forest is a club with a rich history, but this will be its first Premier League game since 1999. Forest spent a lot of time this summer making sure they stayed a while, but for the most part, this is a brand new team than someone who made the cut from the tournament. A few pre-season friendlies are unlikely to bring the team together and I can see Forest getting off to a slow start. That includes a possible loss to Newcastle to start a new era.

Manchester United v Brighton on Sunday 9am | TV: Peacock
Choice: Brighton or Draw (+135) –
Why do I feel like Manchester United are going downhill this season? As you’d expect from Manchester United, the offseason has been a mess. While I love the hiring of Eric Ten Haag, he still has a lot of work to do to get United to where they think they should be, and it will take far more than a summer to get it done. Putting aside all the off-field drama about Cristiano Ronaldo no longer wanting to be there (so much for that happy reunion), there’s been a lot of drama and chaos surrounding the club.

Then Brighton. Reliable, tricky Brighton. This team doesn’t have any superstars, but has a good coach led by Graham Potter with a clear vision. The club is getting far more from the team than it should. Honestly, these teams are mirror images of each other. Manchester United is full of stars who let you down, while Brighton is made up of little people who keep surprising you. I’d be more surprised if Brighton didn’t get results than they did.

🔒 SportsLine Picks of the Day: SportsLine’s Andrew Gombas shares his favorite bets for Saturday night’s UFC event in Las Vegas.

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