The league-worst Cincinnati Reds (3-22) host the Pittsburgh Pirates (10-14) for the opener of a 4-game series at Great American Ball Park Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 p.m. ET. Let’s analyze Tipico Sportsbook‘s lines around the Pirates vs. Reds odds with MLB picks and predictions.
Cincinnati has been swept in 3 straight series. It split its opening series with the Atlanta Braves 2-2 and has gone 1-20 since. The Reds are off to one of the worst starts in MLB history.
The Pirates enter off a split of a 2-game series with the Detroit Tigers and lost 2 of 3 outings to the San Diego Padres in the series before that.
This is the first meeting between the Reds and Pirates this season.
Pirates at Reds projected starters
RHP JT Brubaker vs. RHP Connor Overton
Brubaker (0-2, 6.20 ERA) makes his 6th start. He has a 1.53 WHIP, 5.3 BB/9 and 9.3 K/9 through 20 1/3 IP.
- Hasn’t made it past the 5th inning in any start, but hasn’t allowed more than 3 earned runs in any of his last 3 outings.
- Pittsburgh is 3-2 in his 5 starts.
Overton (0-0, 1.69 ERA) makes his 2nd start. He has allowed 1 ER on 3 H and 2 BB with 3 K across 5 1/3 IP.
- Overton made his season debut in a 4-3 loss at the Colorado Rockies Saturday.
- The 28-year-old only has 4 starts in his MLB career and joined the Reds in the offseason after finishing last year with the Pirates.
Pirates at Reds odds and lines
- Money line (ML): Pirates -135 (bet $135 to win $100) | Reds +110 (bet $100 to win $110)
- Run line (RL)/Against the spread (ATS): Pirates -1.5 (+122) | Reds +1.5 (-150)
- Over/Under (O/U): 8.5 (O: -115 | U: -105)
Pirates at Reds picks and predictions
Reds 6, Pirates 4
LEAN to the REDS (+110).
While the Reds are the worst team in baseball they head home after 5 road games and have a pitching advantage. Their luck will eventually change after being swept in 3 consecutive series, and today seems like that day.
Brubaker has been one of the worst pitchers in the Pirates rotation this season with 14 earned runs allowed in 20 1/3 innings. Pittsburgh ranks 21st in OPS, which indicates it isn’t exactly a strong hitting team either.
The Pirates are only averaging 3.4 runs per game over their last 7 outings.
The Reds have averaged 4 runs per game in their last 3 series, all losses. It’s been their pitching that’s the problem, and Overton could change that considering his season debut was a strong start.
The Reds are actually T-22 in home runs against right-handed pitchers while the Pirates are T-25. Cincinnati may be able to get to Brubaker.
I’ll back the REDS (+110) in this one.
I like the Reds at home, and the Pirates are only 5-7 on the road. However, Pittsburgh -1.5 (+122) would be the only side of this with any value, but it’s only won 3 of its 10 games by more than 1 run.
LEAN to the OVER 8.5 (-115).
Couple Brubaker’s struggles with the Reds’ league-worst 5.16 reliever ERA, and there should be some excitement Friday at Great American.
Even if Overton pitches another gem, the Pirates should be able to score easily after he exits. Also, the Pirates rank 20th in reliever ERA, and Brubaker has yet to play more than 5 innings in a game this season.
The OVER 8.5 (-115) is the better play on the total.