MLB Odds, Picks & Predictions for Cardinals vs. Mets
Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images. Pictured: Miles Mikolas (Cardinals)
- The Cardinals and Mets meet in a series from Citi Field in Queens.
- St. Louis will send Miles Mikolas to the hill while New York is countering with the shaky Tylor Megill.
- Dive in below for Kenny Ducey's preview and pick for this matchup.
Cardinals vs. Mets Odds
-110 / -110
-110 / -110
Two teams who've been colossal disappointments in 2023 will meet in a very intriguing mid-June series at Citi Field this weekend.
So, where does that leave us heading into Friday's series-opener? Let's dig into the numbers and find out.
St. Louis has won just two games in its last 12 tries, failing to muster up much offense at all against some pretty lackluster pitching in recent weeks.
Nolan Arenado has turned his season around a bit — hitting .378 in June — and Paul Goldschmidt continues to produce. Even Jordan Walker has looked pretty good following his shocking demotion.
Even those guys haven't been enough to lead the Cardinals to any success. Tommy Edman and Willson Contreras continue to look lost at the plate, and Nolan Gorman's slump has now lasted longer than anyone would've expected.
All of this has culminated in a 98 wRC+ over the last two weeks, which is a pretty encouraging number for how bad this team has looked offensively. The Cardinals have struck out in 23% of plate appearances over the last two weeks with a .163 ISO, both of which would classify as average numbers.
With that said, nothing about Miles Mikolas has been average this year. His 4.02 ERA isn't all that bad on the surface, but underneath, there are some troubling trends developing.
The righty owns a 4.87 xERA thanks in large part to a .294 xBA. That illustrates how he's lost his ability to pitch to contact.
The veteran has always been strong in that department, but the combination of a lower ground-ball rate (38.6%) and an elevated hard-hit rate (40.8%) have made that difficult.
The Mets have been even worse than the Cardinals at the plate, registering a 88 wRC+ over the last 14 days thanks in large part to some contact issues.
While New York's .163 ISO is somewhat decent, it only really matters if it can put the bat to the ball. These guys were the kings of contact a season ago under Buck Showalter, but the story couldn't be any different this year.
Though they stand sixth in contact rate entering play on Friday, the Mets have made contact with just 74% of their swings over the last two weeks, ranking 25th out of 30 teams. They have the second-highest strikeout rate of any team over that span at 27%, hitting just .219 with a .290 on-base percentage.
Things are pretty dire.
Now, you know things are dire when Tylor Megill is taking the mound for the Mets. The right-hander owns a 5.85 xERA on the season with a low 16.9% strikeout rate, allowing hitters to knock him around.
Opponents are .313 off of his four-seam fastball — which he's throwing almost 53% of the time — and .279 off of his slider — which accounts for 21.1% of his deliveries.
The expected batting average on both pitches is .288 or worse.
Cardinals vs. Mets Betting Pick
The Mets rank 10th in ground-ball rate this year and have historically been a ground ball team with all the contact they've made. So, even if they decided to snap out of their funk and make more contact here, I think it would be a very good matchup for Mikolas to get back on track.
St. Louis has been middling against fastballs this season, but ranks among the five best teams in baseball versus the slider. That should help the Cardinals even further in a matchup with Megill, who's been a pretty crummy pitcher to this point in his career.
There's plenty of value in buying into the Cardinals at this price; Mikolas should be in a solid spot and this offense has at least a few threatening bats even if the rest of the order has been lackluster.
Megill should offer plenty of hope for the road team, as well.
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