Left-handed pitching sapping these MLB power bats

Apr 25, 2013 |
Left-handed pitching sapping these MLB power bats
The Yankees are punishing right-handers but can't connect on lefties.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
The Yankees are punishing right-handers but can't connect on lefties.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
Left-handed pitching is always tough to trump, especially if you’re one of the four teams listed below.

These clubs have plenty of power in their lineups but lose that pop when facing southpaws this season. Some have been solid fades against lefties while others are providing added value on the under when stepping into the box against left-handers.

New York Yankees (.119 BA vs. LHP – 27th)

The Bronx Bombers have simply bombed against left-handers early in the season. New York ranks ninth in offense and hits an MLB-best .289 off righties, heading into Thursday’s game against Toronto (and LHP Mark Buehrle).

The Yankees are 4-3 vs. LH starters, winning +1.02 units, while posting a 1-5-1 over/under record in those games. The issues versus southpaws have Yankees bettors begging for the return of Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira, who hit left-handers especially well.

Arizona Diamondbacks (.119 BA vs. LHP – 28th)

Arizona is in the mix in the National League West thanks to great two-way baseball. The Diamondbacks rank eighth in team ERA (3.43) and 10th in runs per game, averaging 4.62 runs on .251 hitting. The offensive production takes a serious dip versus lefties.

The D-backs have totaled just 20 of their overall 97 runs off left-handed hurlers (20.6 percent) which has led to a dismal 3-8 record against LH starters, costing Arizona bettors -2.51 units. It’s also proved profitable for under bettors, with the club going 2-6 over/under when taking on a southpaw starter.

Boston Red Sox (.215 BA vs. LHP – 24th)

The Red Sox have been a pleasant surprise for Beantown bettors this April, leading the American League East and pulling in +5.85 units heading into Thursday. Boston is seventh in offense, knocking in 4.76 runs per game, and hits .267 off right-handed pitchers. That’s help build a 12-9 over/under mark on the year.

Despite their woes versus LHP, the BoSox haven’t taken that much of a step back against southpaw starters. They’re 4-2 against lefties and have won 1.37 units in those games. Perhaps the biggest difference has been the over/under count. Boston is 2-4 over/under when facing a LH starter.

Philadelphia Phillies (.210 BA vs. LHP – 26th)

For all the potential power in the lineup, the Phillies have flopped no matter which hand the pitch is coming from. Philadelphia is averaging only 3.45 runs per game on .250 hitting, which has the club dragging its feet for a 9-13 record out of the gate.

Philly backers are more than six units in the hole heading into Thursday’s schedule and nearly half of those losses have come against left-handed starters. The Phillies are just 1-3 versus LH starters, blowing -2.56 units in the process. Funny enough, the over has been the better wager in those games, going 3-1 over/under.

Note: These four clubs have a combined 8-16-1 over/under record vs. left-handed starting pitchers heading into Thursday.

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