MLB NRFI Odds & Picks: Back Justin Steele, Hunter Greene For A Scoreless 1st Inning on Thursday (May 26)

MLB NRFI Odds & Picks: Back Justin Steele, Hunter Greene For A Scoreless 1st Inning on Thursday (May 26) article feature image

Matt Dirksen/Getty Images. Pictured: Cubs pitcher Justin Steele

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.

Cubs-Reds No Runs First Inning (-104)

MatchupCubs (Justin Steele) vs. Reds (Hunter Greene)
First Pitch12:35 p.m. ET
Best LineFanDuel

On Thursday, we take an NRFI between two NL Central rivals with their up-and-coming pitchers.

Justin Steele is silently putting together a great NRFI career. Since 2021, he is 15-2 to the NRFI, including his hot 7-1 start to 2022. In his short career, he still managed to be 2-0 to the NRFI against the Reds. Steele has faced 70 first-inning batters, walking only five in his career, and he’s been excellent defending the long ball only allowing one HR.

Steele is also holding teams' Nos. 1 and 2 hitters below .200 averages, allowing only .167 and .133 averages.

Here is how Steele has fared in his matchup against the Reds:

  • Tyler Naquin: 0-for-1
  • Kyle Farmer: 0-for-6
  • Colin Moran: 0-for-2
  • Joey Votto: 1-for-3

Tommy Pham, who is projected to bat fifth on Thursday, is just 4-for-25 over his last seven days. (It should be noted that Mike Moustakas is 1-for-20 over his last seven days and is projected to bat sixth behind Pham.)

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Meanwhile, with the 100 mph fastball, Hunter Greene is shaping up to be a respectable NRFI pitcher. In 38 first-inning batters faced thus far, Greene has allowed only seven hits paired with 14 strikeouts. That has resulted in a 6-2 NRFI record.

Greene is also holding hitters the first time through the order to a respectable .164 average, striking out 26-of-61 batters.

Hunter has not faced any Cubs hitters in his career yet, leaving the unfamiliarity on his side — but he is catching the Cubs slumping. Over the past seven days, key Cubs hitters are hitting significantly below their averages:

  • Wilson Contreras: 1-for-11
  • Seiya Suzuki: 4-for-24
  • Alfonso Rivas: 4-for-19
  • Rafael Ortega: 5-for-23

With slight rain and the wind blowing in at 14 mph toward home plate, these are non-ideal hitting conditions in Great American Ballpark. Look for both teams to remain in their respective slumps in the first inning.

As always, six outs to glory…

Get all of Shayne Trail's NRFI/YRFI bets instantly in The Action Network app.

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