St. Louis Cardinals (Wainwright) (- 1½ R/+135) at NY Mets (Verrett)
The Cards and Mets split a double header yesterday, making this the rubber match of the 3-game early week set. Currently, the Cards trail the Mets by 1 game in the loss column and trail Miami by a full game for the 2nd Wild Card spot. Since they flashed our All Star Break BUY sign, they have gone 6-3.
The Mets, meanwhile, are treading water with a recent 6-8 record. They trail Miami by a ½ game for the 2nd Wild Card spot and Washington by 4 ½ games for the division lead. Last year at this time, the Mets were on the verge of landing Cespedes, a big bat that would fuel their playoff run. This year, despite the fact that Wright is out of the lineup and Walker is in a slump, there are no rumblings of another big bat to help the Mets offensive cause. That is of particular concern in this matchup, as the Cards hold a dominant hitting advantage with a .778 OPS to the Mets’ .719 OPS. That advantage is even wider with the home/road numbers with St. Louis holding a .813 to .723 OPS advantage. But our real edge in this game comes with the starting pitching.
Mets’ starter, Logan Verrett, has been called upon to replace Harvey, who is out for the year. The experiment has not gone well, as Verrett has not posted a win since April 26th. As a starting pitcher, he is 1-4 with a 4.97 ERA.
The numbers for Wainwright are far more favorable. He took much of the spring to round into form, after missing most of 2015 with an Achilles injury. But, the Cards have won 13 of 16 of his recent starts and he has always been among the most effective pitchers after the All Star Break with a record of 51-28 and 3.01 ERA. Wainwright has found a rich vein of current form. In his most recent 4 starts, he is 3-0 allowing just 3 runs in 29 IP with 27 Ks.
We are eager to play the run line here, as 43 of 53 St. Louis’ wins, including 24 of 28 (THAT’S 86% WINNERS!) have been by 2 or more runs. Remember, the Cards have the best road record in baseball at 28-17. I invite you to put the MLB ODDS in your favor and join me in my MLB PICK on St. Louis .