Matchup: Pittsburgh Pirates vs. St. Louis Cardinals Game 5
Date/Time: October 9th, 5:00 PM ET
MLB Betting Odds from TopBet
Probable Starters: Cole (Pittsburgh) vs. Wainwright (St. Louis)
Moneyline: Cardinals -148
We know that we are going to have at least one Game 5 this year in MLB betting action in the league divisional series, and that Game 5 is coming from Busch Stadium, where the St. Louis Cardinals are on a quest for their 12th World Series ring in franchise history. They'll have to beat a team that hasn't even been here in the playoffs in 21 years, the Pittsburgh Pirates first in a winner take all game on Wednesday night.
The Bucs have to remember that there is no shame in this game regardless of what happens. They have had a magical season to remember, and they are going to be proud to look back at this campaign and smile. Unfortunately for RHP AJ Burnett, the last image that he is going to have of his career if this game is lost is getting blown up by the Cards early in Game 1 of this series. Burnett isn't going to end up starting in Game 5 like he was originally scheduled to, and we can't blame Manager Clint Hurdle for making the change. RHP Gerrit Cole will start instead, and that gives this team the better shot of advancing. Cole came on the road and won here in Game 2, and he is going to be pitching on normal rest in his regular spot in the rotation. The righty threw six innings of strong ball, allowing just one run on the day, and he is going to have to put up similar numbers if there is even remotely a shot of surviving. Cole's offense only produced one hit on Monday afternoon, and that's why this series wasn't ended at PNC Park, and now, it's up to the rookie with so much pressure on his back already to score the biggest win of his career on Wednesday.
The Cardinals feel like this is all set up for them at this point. They are hoping to bring the Los Angeles Dodgers to St. Louis right away for Friday night's Game 1 of the NLCS, and they have their ace on the mound to close things out. RHP Adam Wainwright will get the ball from Manager Mike Matheny in the easiest decision that he is going to have to make about who will start a game. Wainwright has led St. Louis to wins in six straight starts that he has made dating back to the regular season, and he has won five of those games. Now, after allowing just a solo homer in seven innings with nine strikeouts in Game 1, he can finish things off and prove that the Cards were always the best team in the NL Central this year.
And that's precisely what is going to happen. The Cardinals are just the better team, and they have the better clutch hitters for sure. This isn't a game that is ending in a blowout one way or the other, and it is going to be a great outing for Wainwright that ultimately pitches his team into the NLCS.
Pittsburgh Pirates @ St. Louis Cardinals Pick: St. Louis Cardinals -148