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Cincinnati Reds vs. St Louis Cardinals - Game One Of A Three Game Series
The St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds will square off for the first of three games at Busch Stadium on Friday night. The two teams met to start the season, and the Reds won two out of three. Cincinnati comes into the game on Friday as losers or four straight games and are 9-9. The Cardinals dropped back-to-back games against the Nationals and are now 8-10 on the season. The Cincinnati Reds are small favorites in this game on the road.
As you may recall, Reds' player Nick Castellanos was hit by a pitch and granted first base. After rounding back to first base, he said a few nasty words to Yadier Molina, who kept the peace from behind the plate. The heated exchange resulted in a bench-clearing brawl where no punches were thrown, but Castellanos was ejected from the game.
He was the only player ejected from the game, but five other players were issued fines, including Molina and teammates Nolan Arenado, Jordan Hicks, and Eugenio Suarez. Reds' player Jesse Winker was also fined. Castellanos was given a two-game suspension he served earlier in the week against the Diamondbacks. He is scheduled to play in this weekends' series against the Redbirds.
Starting off the game and pitching for the Redbirds will be Kim Kwang-Hyun. He's only pitched three innings this season in one game, giving up five hits and three runs. That came in a no-decision against the Phillies. Sonny Gray will get the start for Cincinnati. He has yet to record a decision this season and has a 4.15 ERA.
Injuries for Both Sides
Pitcher Miles Mikolas is still out with a shoulder injury, but he is expected to return to the rotation for the second game of the three-game series. Left fielder Tyler O'Neill has recovered from his groin injury, but it's unclear if he will be in the lineup on Friday night. As of earlier this week, second baseman Mike Moustakas is out of the lineup along with relief pitcher Michael Lorenzon and left-fielder Aristides Aquino.
Joey Votto has gotten off to a slow start for the Reds. He is hitting just .239 this season. Castellanos has been a key cog in the Reds lineup, hitting nearly .300 with five long balls. Paul DeJon leads the Cardinals in home runs with 5, while Yadier Molin and Nolan Arenado are next with four on the season.
Betting Odds for Friday's Affair
Like mentioned earlier, the Cincinnati Reds are small favorites on the road in this game. Neither team is playing great baseball right now, and both teams are desperate for a win. Kim is making his second start and expects it to be a little better than his first. If the Cardinals' boom or bust offense can get to Gray, they win this game. The Reds bullpen was beaten up pretty good in the four-game sweep to the Diamondbacks. This should be a fun start to the series between these two NL Central rivals!
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