MLB Odds, Picks | Diamondbacks vs Cardinals Prediction

MLB Odds, Picks | Diamondbacks vs Cardinals Prediction article feature image

Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images. Pictured: Jordan Montgomery.

  • The St. Louis Cardinals host the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.
  • Arizona won the first game, but our expert is expecting St. Louis to start fast tonight.
  • Continue reading for Jim Turvey's Diamondbacks vs Cardinals best bet.

Diamondbacks vs. Cardinals Odds

Tuesday, April 18
7:45 p.m. ET
Diamondbacks Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-115 / -105
Cardinals Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-115 / -105
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Arizona Diamondbacks take on the St. Louis Cardinals in the second game of their three-game series on Tuesday night.

In the early going, these two teams have done a bit of a body swap, with the Diamondbacks sitting atop the National League West at 10-7, while the Cardinals are last in the NL Central at 7-10. A Pavin Smith grand slam in the seventh inning gave Arizona the win in the series opener at Busch Stadium.

Viewers will be treated to a fun starting pitching matchup. Young prospect Drey Jameson toes the rubber for the Diamondbacks opposite lefty worm burner Jordan Montgomery for the Cardinals.

Arizona Diamondbacks

The Diamondbacks look like they're turning the clock back past when they even entered the league, using speed and defense — and fun vibes — to power a strong start.

They rank first in FanGraphs defense as a team, with contributions up and down the roster from catcher Gabriel Moreno (league-leading 4.2 Defensive Runs Saved, per FanGraphs) to elite left-side infield combo Nick Ahmed and Josh Rojas. They're also tied for fifth in steals, which has papered over a rather run-of-the-mill offense (85 wRC+) and pitching staff (26th in FIP).

That defense will be key for the continued success of Jameson, who's started the season with a 1.46 ERA that appears to be powered by luck and strong defense.

His 4.70 FIP suggests he is due for major regression, and even with strong defense behind him, I'm inclined to believe that is indeed coming. Jameson's strikeout rate (8.76 K/9) is pedestrian, and it even looks poor when in comparison to one of the league's highest walk rates (3.65 BB/9).

It's also not as if he is a ground-ball wizard who is utilizing the aforementioned Ahmed/Rojas combination to work a sustainably lower ERA than FIP.

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St. Louis Cardinals

For the Cardinals, their biggest issue to start the season has been starting pitching, and a lot of the opposite vibes that are going on in Arizona. But let's put aside their bad vibes for this more analytically inclined preview.

In terms of starting pitching, their rotation possesses a 5.00 ERA (all stats through Sunday's games), but that appears to be partly because of bad luck. When considering their 4.34 xFIP and strong defensive reputation, that number should come down.

In addition, Tuesday's starter is one of the few holding strong for the Cardinals, as Jordan Montgomery has posted a 2.45 ERA over his first three starts. The 6-foot-6 lefty owns a 2.96 ERA over 82 innings with St. Louis. He is once again sporting an elite ground-ball rate this season, in front of one of the best defensive infields.

Factoring in that Arizona prefers to hit right-handed pitchers, Montgomery should be in for another successful outing.

Diamondbacks vs. Cardinals Betting Pick

Given the edge in the starting pitching matchup and both teams being due for regression in the opposite direction, I am targeting the Cardinals. However, given St. Louis' inability to avoid stepping on its own toes, I'm going to focus on the first five innings to hone in on the most prominent advantage.

As of writing, the First Five moneyline is available at about half of the most common books, with the best of the bunch being at FanDuel, where bettors can get St. Louis -158. Keep an eye on other books though, especially WynnBet since they have the best full game moneyline price for Cardinals backers as of Monday night.

I would bet the Cardinals first five moneyline to -168.

Pick: Cardinals F5 ML (-158 | Play to -168)

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