Keeler Johnson's picks and plays March 14

March 13th, 2023

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Tuesday, March 14 at Mahoning Valley and Turf Paradise, along with a horse to single in the $938 Pick 5 carryover at Sunland Park.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Trifecta Tuesday: Receive a 15% bonus on trifecta winnings excluding stake amount; up to $25 per day.

Picks and Plays

Mahoning Valley: Race 7: $8,000 Starter Allowance (one mile and 70 yards, 3:34 p.m. ET)

#5 Come See About It (5-2) has won five of his last six starts. Even better, he’s 2-for-2 at Mahoning Valley this season, wiring an $8,000 starter allowance by 10 3/4 lengths before employing identical tactics to trounce an allowance by 2 3/4 lengths over a next-out winner.

Come See About It’s red-hot form and obvious affinity for Mahoning (where he boasts a 6-5-1-0 record) can send him right back to the winner’s circle. We’ll add #3 Blood Moon (3-1) and #8 Improbable Story (9-2) for exacta and trifecta tickets, playing the latter to capitalize on the Trifecta Tuesday promotion.


  • #5 Come See About It
  • #3 Blood Moon
  • #8 Improbable Story


  • $10 Exacta: 5 with 3, 8 ($20)
  • $5 Trifecta: 5 with 3, 8 with 3, 8 ($10)
    Total: $30

Mahoning Valley: Race 8: Allowance (one mile, 4:04 p.m. ET)

#4 Windy Lu Who (9-5) has finished second in four consecutive starts against allowance competition over this track and distance, earning improving Brisnet Speed ratings of 78, 84, 84, and 85. She has an abundance of early speed, and perhaps adding blinkers will trigger the slight move forward she needs to take home top honors.

We’ll look for #8 Mystique Saboteur (4-1) to complete a cold exacta.


  • #4 Windy Lu Who
  • #8 Mystique Saboteur
  • #3 She’s Crafty


  • $25 Exacta: 4 with 8

Turf Paradise: Race 8: $8,500 Claiming (six furlongs, 7:47 p.m. ET)

On Feb. 16, #3 Wild Arch (2-1) rallied boldly to finish second by a neck in a $12,500 allowance optional claimer sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs at Turf Paradise. Then on Feb. 28, Wild Arch engaged in a race-long duel to finish second in a $20,000-$15,000 allowance optional claimer at Turf Paradise, again beaten a neck.

Dropping into an $8,500 claimer should make Wild Arch tough to beat for high-percentage trainer Jose Silva Jr., a 22% winner at Turf Paradise this meet and a 25% winner in claiming races. We’ll bet Wild Arch over #2 In the Vault (4-1), #7 Golden Halo (7-2), and #8 Boisterously Irish (5-1) in the exacta.


  • #3 Wild Arch
  • #2 In the Vault
  • #8 Boisterously Irish


  • $10 Exacta: 3 with 2, 7, 8 ($30)

Carryover Watch

Sunland Park, Race 5: $938 Pick 5 carryover (4:09 p.m. ET)

No one hit Sunland Park’s 50-cent Pick 5 on Friday, which triggered a $301 carryover. Bettors tried to chase down the prize pool on Saturday, but failed again as the carryover grew to $491. Sunday’s sequence proved equally unsolvable, which means there’s a $938 Pick 5 carryover up for grabs when racing resumes on Tuesday following a one-day hiatus.

If we’re honest, there’s no guarantee anyone will hit the Pick 5 on Tuesday either. The five-race sequence drew 49 horses before scratches, averaging 9.8 per race. It works out to 87,120 possible outcomes, a pretty hefty number for a Pick 5.

The good news is, we can reduce the possibilities to consider down to 10,890 by singling #1 Bye Bye Bobby (9-5) in Race 7, a 6 1/2-furlong dirt allowance for horses who have never won three races. Bye Bye Bobby might not be the most certain winner you’ll ever find, but in a challenging Pick 5, he’s appealing enough to serve as a viable single.

Bye Bye Bobby has competed three times at Sunland Park, all during the first three months of 2022. First, he ran second by a neck in the one-mile Riley Allison Derby. Then he finished second by three-quarters of a length in the 1 1/16-mile Mine That Bird Derby. Finally, he ran second by half a length in the 1 1/8-mile Sunland Derby (G3) on the Road to the Kentucky Derby.

You might be wondering, if Bye Bye Bobby is an accomplished route racer, why is he a viable single in a 6 1/2-furlong sprint? Well, believe it or not, Bye Bye Bobby is 2-for-2 sprinting and 0-for-7 running long. He rallied to win his debut in the 2021 Zia Park Juvenile S. sprinting six furlongs, then returned to Zia last October to win a 6 1/2-furlong allowance with pace-pressing tactics.

Bye Bye Bobby misfired in a $62,500 allowance optional claimer at Oaklawn Park two months ago, finishing last by a wide margin. But that contest took place over 1 1/16 miles, and it marked the third time from as many starts that Bye Bye Bobby has run below form outside of New Mexico. Returning to his home state and cutting back to a sprint distance can send Bye Bye Bobby back to the winner’s circle for the hot jockey/trainer duo of Luis Fuentes and Todd Fincher, who have gone 10-for-30 (33%) teaming up together over the last two months.

Good luck!