Note before placing MLB picks for Cardinals vs. Padres that Friday's pitching matchup features two veteran pitchers and a good angle on their home and away differences.
Friday's MLB Odds
I think the odds makers tipped their hand a little bit in this matchup making the Padres just a small plus money line favorite at +118. That line has dropped just a little bit and the best odds out there right now are on the Padres at +116 at 5Dimes. This is pretty surprising but I think the odds makers got it right because San Diego is playing well at this particular time.
St. Louis Cardinals
John Lackey gets the start with a 2.87 ERA, 1.18 whip, 116 strikeouts, and a 10-7 record. The 12 year veteran has been really solid for the Cardinals this year but his away numbers are not that good. On the road he has a 4.25 ERA and 1.26 whip, and in his last two road starts he is given up six earned runs in 12 innings, not bad but not great either. The Padres are pretty hot at the plate right now and should be able to get to Lackey who is pitching well above his career ERA of 3.95.
At the plate the Cardinals rank 21st in runs scored per game at 3.93, 16th in OPS at .708, and 16th in team batting average hitting .253. They are decent road hitting team and their runs scored per game doesn't change that much when they travel, but there OPS and batting average both go down on the road. They are a pitching first team and offensively have struggled at times this season. I think they will have a little bit of trouble at the plate today against a quality pitcher in Andrew Cashner.
San Diego Padres
Cashner takes the mound for the Padres with a 4.20 ERA, 1.36 whip, 116 strikeouts, and a 4-12 record. He has been hot and cold this season but has been pretty steady at home with a 3.70 ERA and 1.32 whip. Also, he faced the Cardinals once already this season and pitched very well allowing only one earned run in just six innings. If he pitches like he is capable of he could definitely keep the Cardinals low in the numbers, and at home this is exactly what I anticipate.
The Padres rank 19th in runs scored per game at 4.01, 28th in OPS at .678, and 28th in team batting average hitting .242. Definitely not good numbers across the board and their home numbers go down offensively in San Diego. Still, recently they been hitting the ball very well and averaged over five runs a game in their last series against the Braves. They should be able to get to Lackey and put some runs on the board to give Cashner enough room to get the win.
It is never easy going against the St. Louis Cardinals, but the odds makers setting this line so low is giving a lot of respect to the Padres. I think they are right, Cashner has the ability to shut even the best offenses down and San Diego is playing their best baseball of the season. Any kind of plus money value is good for MLB picks in this matchup and you can back the Padres with confidence.
MLB Picks: Padres +115 at BookMaker