Game: Detroit Tigers at St. Louis Cardinals
Time: 7:05 p.m. ET
Starting Pitchers: Casey Mize vs. Jack Flaherty
Odds: Tigers +213, Cardinals -225
The Tiger and Cardinals will play another quick two-game series at Busch Stadium beginning tonight. The last time the two teams met, they also played two games but did so in Detroit. The Tigers won both games. Winning on the road is not Detroit’s forte as they have been successful in just 42 percent of their road games. They do, however, have one of the best young pitching prospects in baseball, Casey Mize, on the mound tonight.
Mize is 6-6 with a 3.69 ERA this season and he hasn’t been at his best as of late. In three starts in August, Mize is 0-1 with a sky-high 6.08 ERA. He allowed seven earned runs across those three starts and didn’t last more than five innings. That could be a problem for Detroit as the Tigers bullpen hasn’t been very good recently. Detroit ranks 26th in bullpen ERA on the season at 4.82.
With the Cardinals favored on the money line at -225, bettors looking to back St. Louis might take to the run line. St. Louis will start ace pitcher Jack Flaherty tonight. Flaherty is 9-1 this season with a 2.68 ERA. He just spent a short stint on the injured list, but he appears to be at full strength. In his two starts since being on the IL, Flaherty has posted an ERA of 1.50. He has done so by holding opposing hitters to a .159 batting average.
The Cardinals are 10-3 in Flaherty’s 13 starts this season. Run line bettors should take note that all of those 10 wins have been by multiple runs. In his last two starts, Flaherty pitched six innings each and allowed a total of two earned runs while striking out 13 batters. He walked just one batter in those two games.
Detroit’s lineup doesn’t scare too many opposing hitters. The Tigers are 19th in run production averaging 4.37 per game. The team batting average is a mediocre .240, which ranks 15th in MLB. Detroit’s OPS of .704 ranks 20th, but in their last three games the Tigers are at .562. That is why Detroit is averaging just three runs a game over their last three games.
Both teams trend toward the Under for the season. The Under is 66-56-4 in Tigers games this season and 61-55-7 in Cardinals games. The numbers are similar in Cardinals home games. The Under is 33-25-5 at Busch Stadium. What’s interesting is the Under hits at a 63 percent clip when the game total is set at 8 or 8.5. Tonight’s total, not surprisingly, is 8.
With the strong pitching matchup, tonight’s Tigers-Cardinals matchup could be a low-scoring one. The team just below Detroit in OPS just happens to be the Cardinals (.702). St. Louis also trails the Tigers in batting average (.238, 17th). Aside from Paul Goldschmidt (.283, 19 HR, 71 RBI) and Nolan Arenado (.257, 25 HR, 80 RBI), the Cardinals lineup is not that intimidating.