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October 25, 2014

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Vegas Play of the Day: Padres at Marlins

Two underdogs got my baseball season off to the right start in the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point and features starting bankrolls of $10,000.

I’ll get a little less feisty and back a favorite with the third pick.

Miami Marlins minus-120 vs. San Diego Padres: $360 to win $300

Marlins homerun sculpture

The Padres changing their name to the Madres. The Marlins trading Giancarlo Stanton to a Japanese league team for a clubhouse supply of soy sauce. The fish on Miami’s homerun sculpture coming to life and eating fans in the outfield bleachers.

That’s a short list of scenarios I would have found more plausible than backing the Marlins with my third baseball play of the year. But the formerly teal fish have earned it.

Through a week of action on the diamond, the Marlins are the best team in baseball — another statement that would have sounded like an April Fool’s joke on Opening Day. They’ve scored more runs than the Braves, Reds and Padres — supposed National League playoff contenders — combined. They’ve allowed more than three times less runs than the Diamondbacks, another team rated much higher than the Marlins coming into the season.

It’s a miniscule sample of six games and bound to regress, but not here. Not yet. The Marlins are feeling it, and fading a streak is a quick way to go broke in baseball betting.

More importantly, the Padres are at the other end of the spectrum. They’re a wreck, and down on themselves as everything seems to go wrong.

The Marlins rank first in most offensive statistics categories in the majors. The Padres rank last.

San Diego struggled against Miami starter Nathan Eovaldi, a 24-year old who could be poised to breakout, last season. Eovaldi was sharp in his first outing, a 4-3 Miami win over Colorado Tuesday, which is more than San Diego starter Ian Kennedy can say about his start.

Kennedy gave up three runs in five innings in a 3-2 loss to the Dodgers Tuesday. The Fish feast again — and not the statuette versions.

Standings: Bern (18-12, $10,490), Keefer (15-14, $9,717), Brewer (10-17-3, $5,580)

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

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