Shelby Miller’s rookie campaign was nothing short of spectacular after going 10-3 with a 1.61 ERA at Busch Stadium. Miller is 1-0 with a 3.24 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in three career starts against the Reds, including throwing six innings of shutout ball at home last October. Miller is also supported by a solid St. Louis bullpen that owns a 3.00 ERA and 0.00 WHIP at home this season.
From a technical standpoint, St. Louis is a profitable 64-24 (+24.5 units) at home versus teams with a losing record, 35-12 (+13.9 units) at home versus teams with an on base percentage of .325 or worse and 87-48 (+25.5 units) versus right-handed starters. Even more compelling is the fact that the Cardinals have won six consecutive series against Cincinnati and boast an incredible 26-3-2 series record since 2003. “They’ve been good against us here, in St. Louis in particular, taking advantage of RBI opportunities,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “They got some guys in scoring position and did what they’ve done the last couple of years and drove them in. We couldn’t avoid the big inning. If there’s been a nemesis for us, against this team in particular in St. Louis, it’s been avoiding the big inning.”
Meanwhile, Cincinnati starter Mike Leake was 0-2 with an 8.27 ERA in three starts versus the Cardinals last year. Leake is also off to a questionable start this season as evidenced by the fact that he allowed four earned runs in 6 2/3-innings against a light-hitting Mets’ lineup. Overall, Leake is 2-4 with a 6.04 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in eight career starts against the Cardinals , and I expect his woes to continue this afternoon at Busch Stadium. Let’s also note that Leake is plagued by a terrible Cincinnati bullpen that owns a 5.40 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in 2014, including a 7.15 ERA and 1.59 WHIP on the road and a 5.93 ERA and 1.54 WHIP in day games.
With St. Louis standing at 62-30 (+16.2 units) at home and 40-17 (+15.7 units) at home versus teams averaging 4.3 or less runs per game, take the Cardinals and invest with confidence.