MLB Free Pick: Cardinals Show Me the Money at Royals

cardinals royals

Willie Bee

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 12:33 PM GMT

Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2017 12:33 PM GMT

The Cardinals can climb over the .500 mark for the first time in more than two months with a win Tuesday in Kansas City, and the MLB odds suggest they will get it done.

MLB Season Record: 57-58-3 (+0.85)

Round 1 of the Show Me Showdown went to the St. Louis Cardinals, leaving the Kansas City Royals to try and even the set on their home diamond Tuesday night before the series shifts to Arch City. Jason Vargas (13-5, 3.10) delivers the first pitch at 8:15 PM (ET), St. Louis sending Michael Wacha (8-4, 3.66) out in opposition as a -125 favorite according to 5Dimes where 9 is the scoreboard target.

The Cardinals used a big fourth inning and Carlos Martinez’s right arm to ease to an 11-3 win Monday when the MLB odds were very similar to tonight’s numbers. The victory gave St. Louis a 55-43 advantage in the rivalry, including the epic 7-game World Series in 1985. The teams have traded season honors the last four years, totals now 2-2-2 O/U/P the last six at Kauffman Stadium following Monday’s ‘over’ winner.

 

Cards Seeing Vargas For 1st Time In Three Years

A lack of command led to a high pitch count limiting Wacha to just four innings last Thursday in Milwaukee. He only allowed one run while he was in there, but the Cardinals fell to the Brewers 2-1 in the end. St. Louis had won six of his previous seven starts. Wacha has been whittling down his ERA since late June, fashioning a 1.89 rate over his last seven assignments. The former Texas A&M Aggie is 2-1 with a 2.84 ERA in three starts at Kauffman.

Vargas has seen his ERA balloon close to a full run over his last five starts, though the Royals have managed to win three of those games. He’s coming off a loss at Baltimore about a week ago, the southpaw working the first five innings of a 6-0 defeat and allowing half of the runs the Orioles brought plateward. With injuries marring his 2015-16 seasons, this is the first time Vargas has faced the Cardinals since 2014, a no-decision for him (8 IP, 2 ER) and a 5-3 extra inning loss for the Royals.

 

Umpire Notes, Mother Nature & A Free Pick

Now in just his second full season at the major-league level, Ryan Blakney is in line to call balls and strikes for Game 2. The Washington native carries a strong ‘under’ tendency into the contest with a 3-12-2 O/U/P record in his plate assignments this season, 0-4 O/U with a 9-run total. Home underdogs are 0-3 when he’s behind the mask, the Royals 1-2 when he has the dish in Kansas City.

It should be a very nice evening in KC with temps in the mid-70s under clear skies with a light easterly breeze floating in from right field. My free baseball pick will be on Wacha and the Redbirds.

Free MLB Pick: Cardinals -120Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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