MLB Baseball Preview - St. Louis Cardinals at New York Mets (-185, 9) 7:00 PM EST
The New York Mets continue to be unimpressive with an 8-15 June record after last night's 5-3 loss to St. Louis.
Offense was not believed to be an issue for Willie Randolph's team, yet this month they have scored three or fewer runs in 16 of 23 games. The two teams will battle tonight again on ESPN.
It has not been a pretty season for the defending World Series champions either. The everyday lineup that manager Tony LaRussa expected to have on the field has happened about as often as a cool crisp St. Louis summer afternoon.
The Cardinals literally are fighting every day to win ballgames with a rotation plagued by injury and ineffectiveness, and an offense that has had more droughts then an African desert.
St. Louis has to once again play over their heads since they are 17-35 against the money line in road games when playing against a team with a winning record over the last two seasons.
Why Cardinals win - For St. Louis to win, it's more about what New York doesn't do than what the Cardinals actually bring to game three of the series.
A positive for the Cardinals is they actually have a winning record this month at 12-11 and have won six of last 10 games. The offense is far from consistent, yet now will have outbursts enhancing the chances of the Redbirds winning. In last six victories they have put up five or more runs.
The St. Louis bullpen has often kept this season from being a disaster and the Mets are just 4-11 (-13.1 Units) against the ML in home games against a hot bullpen whose ERA is under 3.00 the last 10 games.
With New York playing spotty baseball, the Redbirds could catch a break as the Mets are 61-92 after seven or more consecutive home games.
Why Mets win - After a couple of dismal outings, Tom Glavine had his Cy Young stuff allowing one run and six hits over eight innings against Oakland. "That's the Tom Glavine we know," New York skipper Randolph said.
"You're entitled every once in a while to get out of rhythm a little bit. Hopefully this is the start of something more consistent." Glavine is seeking his 297th win this evening and has a long history of success against St. Louis.
The crafty lefthander has won his last three starts over the Cardinals, and is 12-2 with a 2.63 ERA in his last 18 starts against them. In 36 career starts against St. Louis, Glavine is 19-6 with a 3.55 ERA.
For good measure, the Metropolitans are 24-10 against the ML in night games over the last two seasons when former child star hockey player takes the ball.
New York is a -185 favorite, RL -1.5(Even) and a Total of 9 at sportsbook.com
Top Totals Trends - St. Louis is 11-2 UNDER after a win by two runs or less this season. New York is 14-3 UNDER as a home favorite of -150 or more this season.
Pick - This is actually about as simple as gets, since the pitching match-up should say it all. Anthony Reyes vs. Tom Glavine. Reyes is 0-9 this season with a 6.64 ERA and the Cards are1-10 in his starts in 2007.
His only win in his last 15 starts came against Detroit in the Fall Classic. His last regular season win came on September 3, when he pitched six shutout innings in beating Pittsburgh.
With the total a solid 9, this is right in the Mets and Glavine's wheelhouse since they are 20-4 against the ML at Shea Stadium when the total is 8.5 to 10 over the last three seasons. (Mets Record)
For those enjoying micromanaging, this same combination is a perfect 11-0 at home when the total is 9 to 9.5 over the exact timeframe.
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