Pick Pirates to Beat Diamondbacks in MLB Series Game 2

Joe Catalano

Friday, August 1, 2014 1:54 PM UTC

Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 1:54 PM UTC

After a surprising Arizona 7-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates yesterday, this series becomes much more interesting as the D’Backs have a chance to win another game tonight when Pittsburgh sends Edison Volquez (8-7, 3.87) to the mound. Which way do we lean here with our betting pick?

First pitch is set for 9:40 pm ET tonight at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona. This game can be seen on the MLB TV.

Odds and Starting Pitchers
Pittsburgh is a slight -108 betting favorite according to 5Dimes Sportsbook and why not? The Bucs are the better team, have the better starter in Volquez, and the Diamondbacks are a mess at home.

Arizona sends out Vidal Nuno (0-2, 3.47) and Nuno is unpredictable. When he was with the Yankees, he had a few good starts, but obviously the Yankees didn’t think enough of him to keep him and they actually traded him to Arizona for Brandon McCarthy who was 3-10 at the time. That doesn’t say much for his value.

Lastly, when I think about this set of pitchers, I can remember Volquez being an above average starter for Cincinnati and then his production took a dramatic drop. He has seemed to have gotten his act together and on a contender nevertheless.

A win against lowly D’Backs would give him double figure wins on the season and more confidence when facing more formidable teams. The MLB betting odds are very desirable if you like Pittsburgh in this game.

Note: Martin Prado is no longer on the Arizona roster. He has been traded to the Yankees.


The Streak Is Over
You knew that Josh Harrison’s run had to come to an end, but it came to such an abrupt end yesterday after striking out 4 times in Arizona’s 7-4 victory over Pittsburgh. Harrison had previously hit home runs in 4 consecutive games. It will be interesting to see if Harrison can bounce back against a shaky pitcher such as Nuno.

Instead, Neil Walker, who has had a very respectable season, went yard yesterday for the Bucs as he hit his 16th home run of the season. With Gregory Polanco hitting .400 against the Diamondbacks, Pittsburgh has a solid 1 through 4 in their starting lineup as they face Vidal Nuno tonight. This is a team with a nice combination of power and speed led by Andrew McCutchen.


One Trick Pony
Without Prado, Arizona is not so deep as an offensive unit. Paul Goldschmidt doesn’t have a lot of support and it shows in the D’Backs overall record. Aside from Goldy, there’s nothing in this lineup that should scare Pittsburgh starter Edison Volquez. David Peralta is hitting .400 against Pittsburgh, but he’s had less than 200 at-bats this season and is coming off of a hitless game.


When I’m trying to dig deep at an even matchup, I look at the trends. Most are meaningless, but it’s worth a look.

The Over is 9-4 in the last 13 matchups between these two teams

Pirates are 16-6 in their last 22 games vs. a team with a losing record

Pirates are 15-7 in their last 22 games as the favorite

Diamondbacks are 6-2 in their last 8 home games

Diamondbacks are 8-18 in their last 26 games as a home underdog


I like the fact that Arizona has played well at home lately, but Pittsburgh is the better team, at great odds, and Volquez has been pitching well. Take Pittsburgh as your MLB betting pick in this tight matchup.
MLB Pick: Pittsburgh -108 at 5Dimes

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