MLB: APR 03 Rockies at Dodgers
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In this morning's newsletter, Zach asked you all a simple question: is Brooks Koepka back? Well, after watching Brooks play the second round in Augusta this morning, it certainly looks like it!

Koepka followed his 65 on Thursday with a 67 today, and is now -12 through two rounds. He looks better than he's looked in a long time, and when you consider some of the weather concerns in Augusta, his large lead could be commanding heading into the final two rounds.

You can keep track of everything happening with The Masters right here. As for the rest of the world of sports, you can read these stories.

Now let's channel our inner Brooks Koepka with tonight's bets.

All times Eastern, and all odds via Caesars Sportsbook

🔥 The Hot Ticket

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 9:40 p.m. | TV: ESPN+

  • Key Trend: The Dodgers are scoring over 6 runs per game to start the season.
  • The Pick: Dodgers Over 5.5 (-105)

Time comes for us all, and Arizona starter Madison Bumgarner is no different. While Bumgarner was never a guy who struck out every hitter he faced, from 2009 to 2019, he finished in the top 10 of Cy Young voting five times and struck out 23.9% of the hitters he faced. Since leaving San Francisco for Arizona, he has not experienced the same level of success.

Instead, in 350.2 innings with the DBacks, his strikeout rate has plummeted to 17.6%. Since the start of last season, it's at 15.9%. That's an alarming trend, and it's worse when facing a team like the Dodgers. As you'd expect, LA has been one of the best offenses in the league to start the year. The Dodgers are third in the league in wRC+, second in wOBA and fourth in run rate. They've scored at least five runs in five of their first seven games and have already reached double-digits twice.

One of those games was against Bumgarner and the Diamondbacks last week. Over his last four starts against LA, Bumgarner has allowed 14 runs in 21 innings and struck out only 12.4% of the hitters he's faced. It's a lineup that's more than familiar with everything Bumgarner has to offer. There are 10 players on the Dodgers roster who have faced Bumgarner at least 20 times. There is no fooling anybody left.

Furthermore, if the Dodgers get to Bumgarner early and chase him before they reach six runs, the Arizona bullpen has been used a lot already. Only seven bullpens have thrown more innings this season, and while the Diamondbacks pen has a respectable ERA of 3.97, it's allowed nine homers in 22.2 innings of work.

Here's what SportsLine is saying about the game: If you're looking for a more traditional play, the Projection Model says the best value to be found in this game is on the money line.

💰 The Picks

Washington Nationals v. Colorado Rockies
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Nationals at Rockies, 8:40 p.m | TV: MLB.TV

The Pick: Nationals (+100) -- The Washington Nationals will be one of the worst teams in MLB this season, so you're never going to be excited to bet on them. That said, terrible teams tend to offer value because nobody ever wants to bet on them! If you choose your spots wisely, money can be made, and tonight looks like one of those spots.

Games in Coors Field can play out like a random number generator due to the thin air, but by and large, the less contact a pitcher allows, the better for him and his team. That's not great news for the Rockies tonight. Jose Urena does not miss bats and has one of the worst strikeout rates in baseball for starters. He also walks too many guys. The reason he's stuck around is he gets a lot of ground balls, but with MLB's new shift rules, it'll be interesting to see how long guys like that can stick in the league. My theory is it won't be long, especially in Colorado.

⚽ Soccer

Lazio vs. Juventus, Saturday, 2:45 p.m. | TV: CBS Sports Network
The Pick: Juventus (+190) -- 
Lazio enters the weekend in second place in Serie A, but it's probably the most mediocre second-place team in the top leagues. Frankly, its position is due more to the Milan clubs underperforming and Juventus being hit with a 15-point penalty than anything else. The underlying numbers for Lazio are all mediocre as hell. While it has a goal differential of +25 on the season, its expected goal (xG) differential is only +4.8. That ranks eighth in the league. It's gotten more than a little lucky.

Considering how terrible the team has been in attack lately, it will catch up sooner rather than later. Lazio has finished only one of its last six matches with an xG of 1.0 or higher, and that was a 2-1 loss to AZ Alkmaar in the Conference League (it finished with 1.3 xG). Lazio beat Roma and Monza 3-0 in its last two matches but did so with an xG of 1.1 in those matches. Meanwhile, Juventus has been solid defensively and has already beaten Lazio twice this season, outscoring it 4-0 in the process. There's a very strong chance Juve makes it a third straight win this weekend.

Liverpool vs. Arsenal, Sunday, 11:30 a.m. | TV: Peacock
The Pick: Over 2.5 (-160) -- 
I'll start by saying I don't hate taking Liverpool to win here. It's been drastically better at home this season, while Arsenal has been significantly worse on the road (using the metrics, not the results). But while that's true and worth exploring, there's more value on this total. Arsenal has allowed only nine goals in 14 away matches in the Premier League, but it's done so on an xG allowed of 12.8.

More than anything, I remember how the first match went between these two. Arsenal won 3-2 at the Emirates and was ruthlessly efficient in attack. Six of its 10 shots were on target, and three went in. Liverpool had plenty of chances itself, however, and controlled the ball for most of the match despite being the away team. I don't know that we'll see another five goals scored in the rematch this weekend, but three seems extremely likely.

🔒 SportsLine Pick of the Day: Two of our SportsLine handicappers, Matt Severance and Stephen Oh, believe there's tremendous value on a play tonight between the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers.