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Pirates vs. Brewers MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Back Milwaukee as a Home Favorite (Friday, July 8)

Pirates vs. Brewers MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Back Milwaukee as a Home Favorite (Friday, July 8) article feature image
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Mark Brown/Getty Images. Pictured: Rowdy Tellez

  • The Brewers host the Pirates in a NL Central showdown.
  • Milwaukee has dominated Pittsburgh this season and our analyst is expecting more of the same on Friday.
  • Tony Sartori breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.

Pirates vs. Brewers Odds

Pirates Odds +184
Brewers Odds -220
Over/Under 8.5 (-112/-110)
Time 8:10 p.m. ET
TV Apple TV+
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

We have the first matchup of this three-game NL Central intradivisional series as the Milwaukee Brewers host the Pittsburgh Pirates. This is the 11th meeting between these two clubs this season and the Brewers have won eight of the first 10 matchups.

Will the Brewers continue their dominance against Pittsburgh, or can the Pirates pull off the upset on the road?

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Pittsburgh Pirates: Will Brubaker Get Back on Track?

The Pittsburgh Pirates enter this series in poor form as they have lost nine of their past 14 games. I expect this trend to continue as right-hander JT Brubaker is slated to take the mound for the Pirates.

Through 16 starts this season, Brubaker is 2-7 with a 4.28 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP. Over his past three starts against Milwaukee, Brubaker is 1-2 and has surrendered 11 runs on 15 hits through 17 innings.

Following Brubaker is a fade-worthy bullpen. Since June 1st, the Pirates’ relief pitching ranks just 26th in the league in ERA, 24th in BA, 23rd in SLG and 24th in wOBA.

This pitching staff will most likely not get much run support either as the Pirates are slated to go against left-hander Aaron Ashby. Since the beginning of June, the Pirates rank just 28th in the league in BA, 23rd in SLG, 27th in OPS and 27th in wOBA when facing left-handed pitchers.

Through 38 career plate appearances against Ashby, this current Pirates roster possesses a mere .188 BA, .375 SLG and a .311 wOBA. When playing in Milwaukee this season, the Pirates are 0-3 with an average losing margin of 3.33 runs.

Milwaukee Brewers: Ashby Has Been Better Than Numbers Indicate

While the Pirates have been struggling, the Milwaukee Brewers enter this series in good form as they have won eight of their past 13 games. Left-hander Aaron Ashby is slated to take the mound for the Brewers.

Through 15 appearances this season, Ashby is 1-6 with a 4.60 ERA and a 1.47 WHIP. I believe we are getting great value on Milwaukee in this matchup due to these poor surface-level stats, though Ashby’s metrics suggest positive regression is looming.

This season, Ashby boasts a .298 xwOBA, .226 xBA and a .358 xSLG. Ashby ranks higher than Brubaker in all three of these metrics.

Through his past three starts against Pittsburgh, Ashby has allowed just five earned runs on nine hits through 13 1/3 innings. Following Ashby is one of the league’s stronger bullpens.

Since June 1st, the Brewers’ relief pitching ranks 12th in the league in ERA, sixth in BA and 13th in wOBA. This pitching staff should be able to get some run support in this contest as the Brewers are slated to go against right-hander JT Brubaker.

When facing right-handed pitchers since the beginning of June, the Brewers rank eighth in the league in SLG, 11th in OPS and 11th in wOBA.

Pirates-Brewers Pick

The Brewers have dominated Pittsburgh this season and are 8-2 through their first 10 meetings. Not only have the Brewers won and covered the run line in all three of their home meetings against the Pirates, but they have covered the run line in seven of those eight wins.

I expect these trends to continue in this matchup and so do the oddsmakers as they have opened the Brewers up as over two-dollar favorites. This price makes sense as the Brewers boast the better starting pitcher, bullpen, hitting matchups and have home-field advantage.

Additionally, the Pirates have had a nightmare of a travel schedule this week. Following their night game against the Yankees on Tuesday, the Pirates had to travel to Cincinnati and play a doubleheader on Wednesday.

Following their doubleheader, the Pirates had to travel to Milwaukee. This game will be Pittsburgh’s fourth over the psst three days in three different cities.

Meanwhile, the Brewers had Wednesday off and have not had to travel since Sunday.

Pick: Milwaukee Brewers -1.5 (-108) | Play up to (-125)

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