MLB odds: Cardinals vs. Indians prediction, odds, pick, and more
These teams have actually had pretty similar seasons. Both offenses have been far below average, making both squads rely on pitching to win games. The Cardinals are eight games back in the NL Central, and the Indians are 8.5 games back in the AL Central. St. Louis has won five of their last ten games, while Cleveland has won four of their last ten. With all these similarities between them, this quick two-game series should be hotly contested.
Here’s how the bookmakers have set the odds for Monday night’s game.
MLB Odds: Cardinals-Indians Odds
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St. Louis Cardinals ML (-110)
Cleveland Indians ML (+100)
Over 9 1/2 runs (+101)
Under 9 1/2 runs (-121)
Why The Cardinals Could Cover The Spread
The Cardinals are sending starter Adam Wainwright to the mound for this inter-conference matchup. Wainwright has been unexpectedly good this season, with his ERA at 3.56 on the season. The veteran righty’s numbers get even better in his last seven starts, where his ERA drops to 2.86. Wainwright also sports a 1.11 WHIP in that span.
Wainwright has a couple more things going his way in this one. 45% of his outs come by ground ball, and the Indians lineup grounds out at a usually high rate. Four Cleveland starters hit ground balls over 50% of the time, with with another three starters hitting grounders 40% of the time. This struggling offense is the perfect matchup for Wainwright.
The righty has also faced the Indians once this season, putting together a strong performance. Wainwright pitched seven innings of two-run ball and notched a win in the process. He should be able to put together another strong performance against an offense that has scored more than four runs only twice in their last ten games.
Why The Indians Could Cover The Spread
While it seems that the Indians are at a pretty big disadvantage against Wainwright, there are a couple of things going their way. Cleveland hits righties slightly better than they do lefties, earning a higher batting average, OBP, and OPS. The Indians also hit better at home, again earning higher offensive stats across the board. These won’t make for a huge turnaround against Wainwright, but it’s better than nothing.
Cleveland starter Cal Quantrill will have some statistical advantages of his own in this series opener. Quantrill has been pretty solid all year, but his stats improve drastically when he pitches at home. His ERA at Progressive Field is 3.49 compared to a 4.24 ERA on the road.
The Cardinals, like the Indians, struggle to hit right-handed pitching well. They hold a .233 batting average against righties, slightly worse than their average against left-handed pitching. St. Louis’s offense also gets worse when they’re away from Busch Stadium, with the Cardinals seeing all of their major offensive stats drop on the road. Quantrill isn’t a dominant starter, but he should be able to put together a good performance against the Cardinals.
Final Cardinals-Indians Prediction & Pick
The under is the obvious pick here. Wainwright should pitch very well, and Quantrill should be serviceable at the very least. With both offenses struggling for the entire season, 9 1/2 runs should be too high to top. The Cardinals are also a decent pick here if you’re looking for better odds.
FINAL PICK: Under 9 1/2 runs (-121)