In a game that has the potential for a lot of runs, Mike Leake (8-8, 4.50 ERA) and the St. Louis Cardinals (57-50) are in Cincinnati to square off against Brandon Finnegan (6-8, 4.68 ERA) and the Reds (43-63). This is the last of a three-game series at the Great American Ball Park. The Cardinals won the last game 5-4, and the series is currently tied 1-1. Action begins at 12:35 p.m. ET on Thursday, Aug. 4 and can be seen on FSMW.
Finnegan pitched 6.0 innings in his most recent start, surrendering zero runs, striking out five and walking three in a 6-0 win over the Padres. Adam Duvall (.250, 59 Rs, 26 HRs, 71 RBIs, 2 SBs) went 1 for 3 yesterday with one run. Leake went 5.0 innings, surrendering six runs and striking out three in an 11-6 win over the Marlins in his last outing. Brandon Moss (.268, 43 Rs, 18 HRs, 43 RBIs) has been successful at the plate for the Cardinals, going 2 for 4 yesterday with one run and two RBIs.
St. Louis takes on Cincinnati as a -142 favorite. The Over/Under (O/U) for the matchup is sitting at nine runs. The Reds have recorded an overall money line of -853 and have shown a weak performance as an underdog this season with a record of 27-56. Cincinnati has gone 5-2 in its last 10 as the underdog. Cincinnati is one of the best in the MLB in terms of steals, swiping 85 bases. Cincinnati's pitching staff has been doing better against opposing offenses during the last 10 games, only allowing an average of 3.6 runs per game, well under their season average of 5.6.
In games where it is the favorite, St. Louis has a 39-32 record and an overall money line of -61. They have been playing solid baseball as favorite with a 17-12 record against NL Central opponents, and a 23-18 record SU. Offensively, they average 5.1 runs per game, which is good for second in the NL. The Cardinals are tough outs for opponents, ranking third in the NL with 9.3 hits per road game. St. Louis is excellent at drawing walks with 3.4 per game, ranking fifth in the NL. The Cardinals allow 4.2 runs per game, but have damaged those numbers in the past 10 games, allowing 5.8 runs per game during that span. When it comes to issuing walks, the Cardinals have the fifth-fewest in the NL with an average of just 2.8 walks allowed per game.
The Cardinals lead the season series, 5-3. The Reds have a 35-46 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Leake takes the mound. Finnegan (LHP) will be on the hill against the Cardinals, who have a 13-17 record against left-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - STL, O/U - Over
The Reds currently sit below .500 against the NL Central Division at 15-24, and the Cardinals have a 24-18 record.
When leading after seven innings, St. Louis is 28-22, while Cincinnati is 22-31.
The Cardinals are coming into this game after allowing two walks during their last outing. The Reds have a 15-39 record when opponents give up two walks or less.
When they outhit their opponents, the Reds are 31-10. The Cardinals have a 40-6 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 20th, Cincinnati is in the bottom half of the league in runs, scoring 458 this season. St. Louis ranks in the top five at third with 543.
Ranking 26th, Cincinnati is near the bottom of the league in walks, notching 291 this season. St. Louis ranks in the top 10 at seventh with 364.
The Reds are 34-35 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Cardinals are 47-31 when they hit at least one homer.