Cardinals vs Rays Prediction Today | MLB Odds, Picks on Tuesday, August 8
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Cardinals vs. Rays Odds
Poor starting pitching is the main reason why the St. Louis Cardinals were sellers at the trade deadline, though they still have a bulk of their main core together.
The Cards face Zach Eflin and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on Tuesday. Eflin has been phenomenal for the Rays, but he has slipped up a few times since July.
The Rays are the superior team, but that doesn't mean they are the wise pick in this one. Cards starter Miles Mikolas has more or less performed similarly to Eflin over the last month and the offense has shown it can hit.
Find a betting pick and prediction for Cardinals vs. Rays on Tuesday, August 8, below.
Mikolas has a 4.29 ERA against a 4.94 xERA. In July, he had a 4.18 ERA over 28 innings. He allows an Average Exit Velocity of 89.9 MPH with a Hard Hit Rate of 40.6%.
One benefit, though, is he walks 4.5% of hitters. In his last start on Aug. 1, he only allowed two earned runs over seven innings.
The Cards have been able to hit all season long. But since July 8, they have a 114 wRC+ and a .774 OPS against righties. Their strikeout rate is below 20% with a walk rate of 8.6%.
In that same timeframe, they have seven batters with a .320+ xwOBA and six over .350.
C Willson Contreras 114.4 mph double vs Marcus Stroman pic.twitter.com/2KfUynSdIT
— Random STL Cardinals (@RandomStlCards) August 3, 2023
As far as the bullpen is concerned, the Cards have five relievers under a 4.00 xFIP over the last month. Even if Mikolas can't work deep, he's backed by pitchers who can keep the game within reach.
Eflin has a 3.46 ERA against a 3.06 xERA, and he has done so with an 87.3 MPH Average Exit Velocity. His Hard Hit Rate is 36.8%, and he is striking out over 25% of hitters while only walking 3.5%.
However, after the All-Star Break, he has a 4.50 ERA over 20 innings. Maybe the season is wearing on him, but this does not give him much of an advantage over Mikolas.
The Rays were struggling for a while and have conceded first place in the AL East to the Baltimore Orioles for the time being. In the last month against righties, they have a 105 wRC+, 23.7% strikeout rate, 8.2% walk rate and .726 OPS. They have five batters above a .320 xwOBA, so the batting edge should go to the Cardinals.
The Rays have done well in relief after a rocky start to the season. Like the Cards, they have five arms below a 4.00 xFIP — but given that Eflin does not allow as much hard contact and walks fewer batters, they may have a small advantage.
Cardinals vs. Rays Betting Pick
The Cardinals should get to Eflin if he continues to pitch like he has after the All-Star break.
Mikolas has at least been serviceable and does not walk anyone. Since the Cardinals lineup has performed better than the Rays lately, they have value on the moneyline.
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