The St. Louis Cardinals will begin a three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds as the NL Central division rivals face off at the Great American Ballpark. It is time to continue our MLB odds series with a Cardinals-Reds prediction and pick.

The Cardinals enter this series leading the NL Central with a 74-54 record. Moreover, St. Louis just took two of these games from the Atlanta Braves and is riding high. The Cards have playoff aspirations and currently are the third-best team in the NL. Likewise, the spot would set them up for a first-round showdown with the San Diego Padres. 

The Reds enter the series with a 50-76, in fourth place in the NL Central. Unfortunately, they are rebuilding and will not see the playoffs again this year. Cincinnati now can focus on attempting to play spoiler. Additionally, they will try to do that against the Cards. The Cardinals currently lead the season series 7-4. Subsequently, the teams have split three of the six games played at the Great American Ballpark. 

The Cardinals will send Miles Mikolas to the hill. Mikolas is 10-10 with a 3.35 ERA. Recently, he tossed 6 2/3 innings while allowing three earned runs on six hits, including a home run. Mikolas has allowed four home runs over five starts, not a good sign, as he tries to keep the baseball in the ballpark. Also, he is 2-2 with a 5.40 ERA over five starts in August, indicating his issues recently. Mikolas has faced the Reds twice in 2022, compiling a 1-1 record with a 5.25 ERA. 

The Reds will go with a player they just signed in Chase Anderson on the mound. This year, Anderson has bounced between Triple-A affiliates from the Detroit Tigers and Tampa Bay Rays. He gets a chance to shine on the mound in his first official appearance. 

Here are the Cardinals-Reds MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.

MLB Odds: Cardinals-Reds Odds

St. Louis Cardinals: -1.5 (-142)

Cincinnati Reds: +1.5 (+118)

Over: 9.5 (-102)

Under: 9.5 (-120)

Why The Cardinals Could Cover The Spread

The Cardinals have a great pitcher, but he has struggled recently. Additionally, he has experienced his share of struggles against the Reds. Mikolas does have excellent run support. Moreover, this lineup is ready to help raise him up if needed. Mikolas can win a game 2-1 or 7-5, depending on the circumstances. 

Paul Goldschmidt continues to rake, batting .338 with 33 home runs, 105 RBIs, and 92 runs. Likely, he will hit 40 home runs if he keeps the pace going. Goldschmidt has already broken 100 RBIs and has more to deliver. Now, he must keep the momentum going as the run to the playoffs gets closer. Nolan Arenado is the second-best hitter on the team, batting .306 with 27 home runs, 84 RBIs, and 62 runs. Likewise, St. Louis depends on him to deliver when Goldschmidt cannot. 

Tommy Edman was the hero last night, driving in the go-ahead runs. Now, he looks to keep up the pace. Edman is batting .252 with nine home runs, 43 RBIs, and 81 runs. He is a run scorer and has displayed the ability to get on base. The Cards will rely on him to find a way to get on base. Then, they expect to drive him in and help him score. Nolan Gorman is near the top of the lineup but is batting .239 with 13 home runs, 33 RBIs, and 43 runs. Likewise, he is a run-scorer who has displayed patience at the plate. The Cards will succeed if he can maneuver around his hitting struggles and find his way on base. 

The Cardinals will cover the spread if Mikolas can pitch well. They succeed if Goldschmidt, Arenado, Edman, and Gorman produce at the plate. 

Why The Reds Could Cover The Spread

The Reds are going nowhere but can still pose a threat at times. However, they are inconsistent and field many hitters hitting well below the Mendoza line. The Reds have five players hitting below .190. Additionally, they are all in the starting lineup on a near regular basis. 

Stuart Fairchild is a top prospect but is batting .086 with two home runs, two RBIs, and four runs. However, Cincinnati also has players like Kyle Farmer and Jonathan India. Farmer is batting .266 with eight home runs, 57 RBIs, and 48 runs, while India is batting .249 with eight home runs, 28 RBIs, and 35 runs. Thus, Cincinnati has limited options at the plate and will make the most of what they have. 

The Reds will cover the spread if Anderson can give them five quality innings. Additionally, they need their hitters to perform today. 

Final Cardinals-Reds Prediction & Pick

It is difficult to trust a guy with a 4.50 ERA at Triple-A. Therefore, the Cardinals are the safer bet, with Mikolas throwing. Expect him to pitch significantly better and the Cardinals to take the game. 

Final Cardinals-Reds Prediction & Pick: St. Louis Cardinals: -1.5 (-142)