MLB Picks: Cardinals vs. Pirates NLDS Game 3 Preview

Jeff Grant

Sunday, October 6, 2013 12:47 PM GMT

The Pittsburgh Pirates are expecting a raucous atmosphere at PNC Park Sunday, as they continue their best-of-five series against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Let’s take a closer look at the MLB betting lines for Game 3 of this National League Division Series, with the first pitch scheduled for 4:37 p.m. ET on TBS.

Following an off day

St. Louis simply didn’t have it in suffering a 7-1 setback to Pittsburgh on Friday as -125 home favorites, while going ‘Over’ the total for the second time in as many games in this series.

The Cardinals have won seven of their last eight games following an off day, with the ‘Under’ going on a 3-1-2 run in that situation.

Five is the key number

Pittsburgh improved to 55-9 when scoring five or more runs since the start of the regular season with its latest victory, as the club continues to receive major contributions from two players it acquired in August.

Outfielder Marlon Byrd and first baseman Justin Morneau have energized the clubhouse since coming over from the New York Mets and Minnesota Twins respectively.

Baseball betting handicappers will find that the Pirates are 17-7 in their last 24 games as a home favorite of -151 to -200.

Kelly

Cardinals starting pitcher Joe Kelly (10-5, 2.69 ERA) has alternated wins and losses over his last five efforts, as he comes off a 4-0 home win over the Chicago Cubs Sunday, allowing three hits over 5.1 shutout frames.

The right-hander is 5-1 with a 2.07 ERA in 19 road games (seven starts), with opposing hitters batting .237 against him.

In eight career games (four starts) versus the Pirates, Kelly has compiled a 3-2 record and 3.38 ERA, including a 2-1 mark and 2.84 ERA in four appearances at this ballpark.

Liriano

Pirates starting pitcher Francisco Liriano (16-8, 3.02 ERA) was magnificent in capturing a 6-2 home victory over the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Wild Card Game Tuesday, as he surrendered just one run and four hits over seven frames.

The left-hander has gone 8-1 with a 1.47 ERA in 11 home starts, with opposing batters hitters batting just .174 against him.

In four lifetime efforts against the Cardinals, Liriano has tallied a perfect 4-0 record and 1.16 ERA.

Prediction

For my sports picks, I’m going to recommend that readers back the Pirates, as the Cardinals have dropped 11 of their last 12 games as road underdogs of +110 to +150.

[gameodds]3/246768/?r3=349-43-192-19-999997-118-238-227/dec&r-1=349-43-192-19/us[/gameodds]

MLB Pick: Pick the Pittsburgh Pirates -155 on the money line to win, available at William Hill 

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