Guardians vs. White Sox Odds, Pick, Prediction: Hot Cleveland Offense Faces Michael Kopech (May 9)

Guardians vs. White Sox Odds, Pick, Prediction: Hot Cleveland Offense Faces Michael Kopech (May 9) article feature image

Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images. Pictured: Jose Ramirez (Guardians)

  • AL Central rivals are set to face off as the Cleveland Guardians travel to Chicago to face the White Sox.
  • The Guardians swept the White Sox earlier this season, will this series be different?
  • Mike Ianniello shares his best bet below.

Guardians vs. White Sox Odds

Guardians Odds+155
White Sox Odds-169
Time8:10 p.m. ET
Odds via WynnBET. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

After a slow start to the season, the White Sox have now won six straight games following a sweep of the Red Sox. The most remarkable thing about this winning streak is they haven’t scored more than four runs in any game.

Cleveland has also been playing well, having won seven of its past 10 games, including taking three of four from the Blue Jays. These two American League Central foes currently sit second and third in the division and each have 14 wins.

The first matchup between these two teams in April resulted in a three-game series sweep for the Guardians. Cleveland outscored the White Sox 19-5. Will the red hot White Sox have better luck at home?

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Cleveland Guardians: What's Wrong with Plesac?

After a promising 2020, Zack Plesac (RHP) regressed in '21 and has not been able to bounce back this season. Through five starts he is 1-3 with a 4.44 ERA and 4.60 xFIP. Over his past two starts, he allowed 10 earned runs in 8 2/3 innings.

Don’t expect many swings-and-misses as Plesac’s 5.47 K/9 rate is one of the lowest in the league. His fastball velocity is down to 90 miles per hour and he has been crushed to the tune of a 52.5% hard-hit rate. In his last start, he allowed four walks, which is alarming since he usually has good control.

Cleveland’s offense has really bounced back from a down 2021 season. The Guardians rank fourth in the league in runs and sit seventh in wOBA.

Perennial MVP candidate Jose Ramirez continues to lead the Guardians at the plate. Cleveland’s star leads the league with 30 RBIs and ranks fourth with a 1.041 OPS. Rookie Steven Kwan has also been a breakout star for this team, leading all rookies in hits, runs, batting average and OPS.

Chicago White Sox: Kopech Continues to Dominate

The only person who has been able to stop Michael Kopech (RHP) this season has been Tony La Russa. Kopech continues to fight with his manager for a longer leash as the 26-year-old has yet to pitch into the sixth inning this season.

The quick hook as been a welcomed sign for opponents as Kopech holds a 1.17 ERA and opponents are hitting just .169 against him. His walk rate has been a little high this season and his strikeout rate is down a touch, but his fastball and curveball have both been terrific.

It’s probably a bit of a surprise that the White Sox offense has been a concern. Only two teams in the league have scored fewer runs than Chicago. The White Sox haven’t lost a game in a week, but still rank just 20th in scoring over that stretch.

Injuries have been an issue for Chicago, as Eloy Jimenez, Yoan Moncada and Andrew Vaughn are all on the Injured List. Luis Robert has missed time as well. Even so, the White Sox rank just 24th in wOBA and wRC+. Vaughn and Tim Anderson are the only two players with a wOBA over .350.

Guardians-White Sox Pick

I think this line is a tad high. These teams have looked much more even than people anticipated. They have the same number of wins, are both 7-3 in their past 10 and Cleveland leads the season series, 3-0.

Kopech has been fantastic, but despite a 1.17 ERA, his xERA is at 3.15 and his xFIP is up at 4.32. He has allowed a 41.1 Hard Hit%, which ranks below average in the league. Even as Kopech continues to deal, La Russa hasn’t let him pitch past the fifth inning yet this year.

While Plesac inspires little confidence and has really struggled, he did have a strong outing against the White Sox a few weeks ago, allowing just one earned run on seven hits.

Even during the winning streak, this White Sox offense has been ice cold and the pitching staff will only be able to carry the team for so long. Cleveland’s offense has been one of the best in the league and I think its bats deserve more credit than this line indicates.

I’ll back the Guardians at +155 and would play them down to +140.

Pick: Cleveland ML +155

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