This season, the St. Louis Cardinals and Cleveland Indians have been mediocrity personified so far this season. With the Cardinals sitting at .500 for the year and the Indians at one game above .500, time is running out for both teams to climb the standings for a playoff push. Here, Cleveland and St. Louis begin a series with major implications as both teams look to push toward a winning record.
Cardinals Starting to Heat Up
The St. Louis Cardinals are at .500 on the year and have had to play some great baseball of late to get there. St. Louis has won six of their last nine games and will look to make it seven of 10 in their series opener against the Indians. To facilitate that, the Cardinals will look to Adam Wainwright, who has had his ups and downs this season just like the rest of the roster.
Wainwright enters this game with a 7-6 record on the season and an ERA of 3.56. Wainwright has by no means been bad this season but has sort of embodied the type of season that the Cardinals have had as a whole. For every step forward the team has taken for the year, they have taken a step backward, and both the team and Wainwright need to avoid that trend continuing.
Cleveland Hoping for Some Relief
The recent schedule for the Cleveland Indians has been nothing short of brutal coming out of the All-Star break. Their last two series were especially daunting, as Cleveland had to take on title contenders in the Houston Astros and Tampa Bay Rays. During the last seven games against those two teams, Cleveland went 2-5, losing both of those series in the process.
If Cleveland is going to get back into the swing of things in the American League Wild Card race, they are going to need to wake up offensively. Cleveland has failed to score more than five runs in each of their last ten games, with their last six or more run performance coming against the lowly Kansas City Royals. Wainwright is unlikely to give anything away on the mound for the Cardinals, which means Cleveland will need to step up or risk falling back to .500 in 2021.
Cleveland, like the Cardinals, is sending a solid arm to the mound for this match. Cal Quantrill enters this game with only a 2-2 record for the season. But the Indians starter hasn’t lost a decision since June 6 and has picked up the win in two of his last three starts.
Cardinals vs. Indians Betting Pick:
Neither team has given bettors much reason to be fully confident in one side or the other over the course of the entire MLB season. But the Cardinals have been a better team as of late, with the Cleveland struggles on offense being a huge red flag against a competent pitcher in Wainwright. Expect the Cardinals to win what should be a low-scoring game between two teams, hoping to find their footing before it’s too late.
The Pick: Cardinals -120 to win
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