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Cincinnati Reds vs. Pittsburgh Pirates Betting Preview
Due to rain postponing their game Saturday, the Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians only played two games over the weekend. In the abbreviated series, the two teams split, with the Reds taking Friday’s game 3-0 and Cleveland taking Sunday’s game 9-2. The Reds will look to bounce back Monday.
For the Pirates, they lost two of three to the Chicago Cubs over the weekend, but they did win Sunday’s game 6-5. In the win, center fielder Wilmer Difo went three for five with three runs batted in and two runs scored.
The Reds are the favorites in this one despite playing on the road. They are -138 to win while the Pirates’ moneyline is +118. The runline features Pittsburgh +1.5, and the over/under on total runs is eight.
Cincinnati will turn to righty Jeff Hoffman (2-2, 4.39 ERA) to get the series started off right. Hoffman struggled in his last outing, a 9-0 loss to the White Sox, as he went just 2.1 innings, allowing four runs on five hits.
The Pirates will counter with Mitch Keller (2-3, 6.29 ERA). For the most part, Keller has struggled this season, but he did find success in his last outing. In a 2-1 win over the San Diego Padres, Keller went 5.2 scoreless innings allowing just two hits and striking out five.
By The Numbers
Cincinnati has had a far superior offense this season. They rank third in runs per game at 5.06, although they have averaged just 1.5 runs per game over their last four games. Pittsburgh falls to 29th, averaging just 3.44 runs per game.
Defensively, the Pirates hold the advantage. They rank 19th in the majors allowing an average of 4.41 runs per game to opponents. The Reds rank 26th, allowing 5.19 runs per game.
Reds Need To Improve On The Road
Despite being 15-16, the Reds sit just four games out of first place in the NL. Central. If they are going to improve, though, they have to do better on the road. They are currently 10-7 at home but just 5-9 on the road.
Leading the way offensively for the Reds is outfielder Nick Castellanos. This season he is hitting .316/.355/.632 with nine home runs and 20 runs batted in. He has scuffled a bit lately, though, hitting .125/.222/.250 in the last week.
In his career against Keller, Castellanos is three for ten with a home run. He is the only Reds’ player that has homered against the righty, but Tucker Barnhart is one for two while Jesse Winker is two for three against Keller.
Pittsburgh Hopes To Move Out Of Division Basement
Realistically, there aren’t high expectations that the Pirates will do much this season as it is largely seen as a rebuilding year. At 14-19, they have struggled out of the gate but hope to be competitive in the division.
Unfortunately for Pittsburgh fans, Colin Moran was just put on the injured list with a groin injury. He was tied for the team lead in home runs (four) and led the team in runs batted in at 19. In an already struggling offense, it is just one more blow to Pittsburgh.
In their careers against Jeff Hoffman, Todd Frazier and Adam Frazier both have homered while going a combined four for ten against the righty.
Offense Needs To Shine For Cincy
The Reds’ offense has scuffled a bit as of late, but they have shown through much of the early season that they are an offense to reckon with. Against a pitcher who has struggled in Mitch Keller, this is an opportunity to get back on track.
The Reds have scuffled on the road, but the Pirates have not been particularly good at home (5-7). Take into account that the Pirates are just 2-8 in their last ten, and this could be an opportunity for the Reds to get back on track.
Regardless, it should be a fun series to watch starting on Monday.
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