Cubs at Pirates O/U 8.5 Runs
After a tough weekend in which the Pirates were outscored 33-3 over their final three games in Atlanta, Pittsburgh had a much-needed off-day yesterday to reflect. After starting the season 12-11, they are 6-17 since. After this weekend’s shellacking, they now have the worst run differential in baseball. Tonight for Pittsburgh, Cody Ponce will make his season debut. Last season in a mere 17 innings, Ponce produced a 3.18 ERA. That said, the xFIP was at 5.67. Tonight, I expect the Cubs, who have w0n six of their last eight, to score some runs.
For those Cubs, Jake Arrieta (4-4, 4.46 ERA) takes the mound. Although he’s had success against the Pirates since the beginning of time, he is vulnerable in general to allow runs. In two starts against the Pirates this year, he’s allowed three earned runs over 12 innings. That said, he hasn’t seen this team since April 8. Over his last three starts specifically, Arrieta has allowed 13 earned runs over 14.1 innings. Perhaps facing the Pirates will provide an antidote to his woes. On the other hand, the Pirates might have a chance to score runs.
Pick: over 8.5 runs (-115, DK)
Blue Jays at Yankees O/U 0.5 First Inning Runs
In tonight’s pitching matchup between these two teams, we have Steven Matz (5-2, 4.69 ERA) facing off against Corey Kluber (4-2, 2.86 ERA). Although Matz’s ERA does not look great overall, he has been effective when facing opposing lineups the first time through. Opponents are hitting .205/.235/.359 against him during their first trip through the order and his ERA is 2.45.
On the other, Kluber will be coming off of his no-hitter last time out. Overall this season, he has been electric. Specifically, when facing the opposing lineup the first time, he has been almost unhittable sporting a 1.31 ERA. In two starts against the Blue Jays this season, Kluber has allowed four earned runs over eight innings. That said, those two starts came during the first two weeks of the season. Kluber wasn’t great in April. He has been phenomenal in May. Because of these two pitchers’ ability to slice through the lineup the first time around, I believe we will see a scoreless first inning.
Pick: under 0.5 runs (+107, DK)
Rockies at Mets Run Line
Jacob deGrom (3-2, 0.68 ERA) is making his return. That’s all you pretty much need to know. In one start against Colorado this season, deGrom struck out 14 hitters over six innings. He also gave up a season-high three runs although none were earned. I get that it’s a thing that the Mets’ offense never provides run support for the best pitcher in the sport, but tonight, I think they take care of business. Against Kyle Freeland, who is making his season debut, I think the Mets will be able to scratch a few runs across. After finishing fourth in Cy Young voting in 2018 (deGrom won), Freeland was terrible in 2019 (6.73 ERA) and okay in 2020 (4.33 ERA). In 10 AAA innings pitched this season, Freeland allowed two earned runs.
deGrom will cut through the Rockies’ lineup like butter. As long as the Mets can score three or four runs, they should win by at least two.
Pick: Mets -1.5 (-106, DK)
Nathan Hursh Overall Record: (14-27-1)
Net Money (assuming all wagers are $100): –$1,357.95
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)