Wednesday’s MLB Over/Under: Can Weaver, Rodon Keep It Going?

Credit:

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Luke Weaver

  • Matt Zylbert is back with another Interleague MLB over/under on Wednesday — Cardinals-White Sox.
  • Both starting pitchers are trending in the right direction, and the high total should give bettors breathing room.
  • The Cardinals have really struggled against left-handed pitching, as well.

It’s taken a lot of scratching and clawing to open up this final week before the MLB All-Star break with a pair of victories. The latest Houdini effort involved holding on to an Under 8 bet despite a 5-0 score in the third inning of last night’s Tigers-Rays game. It’s just what I do. I’ll try to keep it going tonight, minus the sweating.

Zylbert’s 2018 MLB Over/Under Betting Record: 60-38-3, +18.05 units

Yesterday’s Result: Tigers-Rays Under 8, Boyd vs. Stanek (WIN)

*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit

St. Louis Cardinals @ Chicago White Sox | O/U: 9.5

8:10 p.m. ET

Probable Pitchers: Luke Weaver (5-7, 4.92 ERA) vs. Carlos Rodon (1-3, 4.29 ERA)

When you see a matchup with two starting pitchers who appear to both be trending up entering their final starts before the All-Star break, with an over/under line as high as 9.5 and taking place in a relatively friendly park toward pitchers, it’s always worth a look. In this case, it’s an under bet worth taking.

Understandably, Weaver might not evoke much confidence from those backing the low side of the total following a rough June. He surrendered at least four runs in four of his six outings last month. However, the 2014 first-round pick appears to have gotten things back on track after his last start, when he was nearly perfect in San Francisco. He allowed only two hits to go with seven strikeouts and zero walks over a career-high eight innings.

That’s more like the Weaver we saw to open the season, when he accumulated a 2.08 ERA over his first three starts. He’s been mostly inconsistent since then, but let’s not forget that this is a talented pitcher capable of putting together good stretches.

Weaver figures to also benefit from a date with the White Sox, who will be without their hottest player in the last few weeks, Avisail Garcia, who was placed on the disabled list. Chicago has also had some difficulties at the plate as of late, topping four runs just three times in its last 12 ballgames, 10 of which it has lost. The Sox are on a six-game losing streak entering tonight’s season-series finale.

Rodon, the other starter in this affair, also looks like he’s headed in the right direction after delivering his second quality start since making his season debut about a month ago. Impressively, that came on the road in Houston against the defending world champs.

 

In that contest, Rodon racked up six punchouts — his most since his seven strikeouts in his first start of 2018. And that’s crucial for this hard-throwing southpaw, who averaged at least one strikeout per inning in each of his first three previous major league seasons.

Thus far, he’s recorded just 28 Ks in his 35.2 innings, but the Cardinals are a good opponent to help him boost that number. In general, you might not think that about the Redbirds, but when there’s a left-hander on the hill, St. Louis is striking out once every 3.70 at-bats. Some of the Cards’ best hitters — specifically Matt Carpenter (14-for-66, .212), Dexter Fowler (4-for-42, .095), Yadier Molina (10-for-47, .213) and Paul DeJong (6-for-37, .162) — have had trouble this season against lefties.

It’s a luxury to have some room for error with a total this high, meaning all it may take is one standout performance from either of these hurlers to pull out the win. As long as both can eat up innings, which seems more likely than not, this under will be a solid play.

Play: UNDER 9.5 (-115)

Follow me on Twitter @MattZylbert

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