The two best teams in the NL Central start a three-game series against one another on Tuesday night as the Milwaukee Brewers host the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals currently hold a two-game lead over Milwaukee atop the division. However, the Brewers are -125 favorites on Tuesday, with the Cardinals having a moneyline of +105.
The Brewers had been at the top of the NL Central heading into May. But that was before Milwaukee lost six straight games last week. On the right side, the Brew Crew beat the Marlins on Saturday and Sunday to get back on track and stay above .500.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals have been one of the best teams in baseball since the calendar flipped to May. St. Louis is 7-2 in May and winners of 13 of its last 17 games overall. As a result, the Cardinals are now tied with the Giants for the best winning percentage in the National League.
Korean lefty Kwang Hyun Kim gets the start on Tuesday and will see the Brewers for the first time in his career. Through his first four starts in the majors, Kim is 1-0 with a 3.06 ERA. He’s not yet earned the trust to go deep in games but has allowed just one earned run in three of his four starts.
Kim will face a Milwaukee lineup that’s averaging just 3.5 runs per game over the last eight games. Christian Yelich and Omar Narvaez being on the IL have hindered the Brewers, depriving them of two of their best hitters. Outside of Avisail Garcia, who is one of the few remaining bright spots, everyone on the Milwaukee roster seems to be mired in a deep slump over the last week.
The Brewers will send Freddy Peralta to the mound on Tuesday night. The 24-year-old is getting a chance to be a full-time member of the rotation and taking advantage of his opportunity. In six starts and one relief appearance, Peralta is 3-1 with a 3.38 ERA while totaling 53 strikeouts in 32 innings of work.
Despite their recent run of success, the Cardinals still aren’t doing anything special offensively, with regulars like Justin Williams and Paul DeJong still batting under .200 on the season. Only Nolan Arenado and Dylan Carlson have an OPS over .800, while Paul Goldschmidt has struggled to get going this year. On the bright side, Goldschmidt is starting to heat up, and Yadier Molina is back from the IL to give the St. Louis lineup even more depth.
Red Hot Redbirds
Over the last two weeks, St. Louis has clearly been the better team, and the fact that the Cardinals have a more profitable moneyline makes them the better bet in this game. It’s also worth noting that Peralta has had trouble with Goldschmidt, DeJong, and a few other St. Louis hitters in his career. Meanwhile, a sluggish Milwaukee lineup will have to deal with a starting pitcher they’ve never seen before. Bet on the Cardinals to beat the Brewers on Tuesday.
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