Imagine saying to yourself before the 2023 MLB season began that on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, the St. Louis Cardinals and Cleveland Guardians would not only be under .500, but more than five games under .500. Imagine being told by anyone in late March that on May 27, the Cardinals and Guardians would both have 28 or more losses in their first 50 games. Imagine the thought that the Cardinals would trail the Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League Central Division standings, and that the Guardians would trail the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central Division. All of those thoughts would have seemed absolutely insane to any logical baseball fan, and yet they are all facts as of Saturday afternoon, before this game in Cleveland on national television.
The Cardinals are 23-30, roughed up by a lack of pitching, both from their starters and their bullpen. The Cardinals have simply not been able to get consistent pitching for any prolonged period of time. They are going to have to make a deal for at least one high-end arm if not two at the upcoming trade deadline.
The Guardians have the opposite problem relative to the Cardinals. While closer Emmanuel Clase has regressed this season, he isn't terrible. He just isn't great this year. The problem for Cleveland has been its hitting. The Guardians have scored two or fewer runs in more than 20 of their games this season … and the Guardians have played only 50 games. That is an extraordinarily consistent run of futility at the plate. The Guardians repeatedly get shut down and have not been able to find a ready supply of run-scoring hits in high-leverage situations. There are 112 games left in their season, and they have to hope that the BABIP gods and the laws of averages will even out for them, but to an undeniable extent, a lot of their hitters have to hit the ball harder. It isn't just about the ball not bouncing their way; over 50 games, some better trends should emerge, but they have not for the Guardians.
Here are the Cardinals-Guardians MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
MLB Odds: Cardinals-Guardians Odds
St. Louis Cardinals: -1.5 (+146)
Cleveland Guardians: +1.5 (-176)
Over: 8 (-122)
Under: 8 (+100)
How To Watch Cardinals vs. Guardians
TV: Fox Sports (national)
Stream: Fox Sports App
Time: 7:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. PT
*Watch Cardinals-Guardians LIVE on fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Cardinals Could Cover The Spread
The Cardinals have been playing better baseball of late. They are 6-4 in their last 10 games. They are only five games out of first in the N.L. Central because no team in the division has stepped up. The first-place Milwaukee Brewers are just three games over .500. The Cardinals, who were 10-24 through 34 games, are now 23-30, so they have won 13 of their last 19 and have been able to dig out of a big hole. They are still well behind schedule this season, but they are very much in the division chase and have survived the worst this season has had to offer. They are playing a Cleveland team which doesn't score a lot of runs; it's a good matchup for St. Louis.
Why The Guardians Could Cover The Spread
The Guardians have Tanner Bibee, their exciting 24-year-old starting pitcher, on the mound. Cleveland fans have been raving about Bibee for awhile, and he finally made his MLB debut with the club earlier this season. So far, so good. Bibee has a solid 3.18 ERA and has done his part for the Guardians. Given how inconsistent the Cardinals' starting pitching has been through the first two months of the 2023 season, Cleveland has to feel confident about the pitching matchup in this game.
Final Cardinals-Guardians Prediction & Pick
This is a game you should stay away from, given how inconsistent both teams have been. Maybe look for a live betting play.
Final Cardinals-Guardians Prediction & Pick: Guardians +1.5