Pirates vs Cardinals Odds & Prediction: Tuesday F5 Pick

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Pirates vs Cardinals Odds & Prediction

Tuesday, June 11
7:45 p.m. ET
Pittsburgh Pirates Odds
MoneylineOver/UnderRun Line
-120o / +100u
St. Louis Cardinals Odds
MoneylineOver/UnderRun Line
-120o / +100u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The St. Louis Cardinals will play host to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday, kicking off a three-game series. Outside of the Brewers, who have a seven-game lead on the rest of the NL Central, every other team in the division is within a half-game of each other.

Pittsburgh is a -148 favorite on the moneyline tonight with an over/under of 7 (-120o / +100u) as Paul Skenes takes on Miles Mikolas.

Let’s take a look at my game preview and best bet for Pirates vs Cardinals on Tuesday, June 11.

Check out our MLB Betting Hub for more previews from today's slate.

Pittsburgh Pirates

The electric Paul Skenes will take the mound at Busch Stadium for the first time in his young career.

Through his first five Major League starts, Skenes has impressed with his top-tier velocity. He has struck out 38 batters in 27 innings and sports a 3.00 ERA with a 2.79 xERA.

Skenes' 113 Stuff+ mark ranks 16th among starters with 20-plus innings, but his ability to locate has set him apart. Skenes also ranks 15th out of these 174 pitchers in Location+.

Among qualified pitchers, Skenes ranks in the 97th percentile in strikeout rate, 91st percentile in whiff rate, and 80th percentile in walk rate. While he hasn’t allowed a ton of barrels to this point (66th percentile), he ranks in only the 18th percentile in hard-hit rate allowed and fifth percentile in average exit velocity allowed.

Among MLB lineups, the Pirates rank 27th in wRC+ and 26th in wOBA. They have the eighth-best walk rate but the fifth-worst strikeout rate.

The Pirates actually match up well with Cardinals starter Miles Mikolas, as they are patient enough to not play into his hand and likely won’t be struck out by him often.

Pittsburgh’s batted ball profile is impressive. Among MLB lineups, they rank seventh in hard-hit rate, 12th in exit velocity, and ninth in barrel rate.

St. Louis Cardinals

Miles Mikolas will get the nod for the Cardinals tonight.

The 35-year-old righty is now in his sixth season with St. Louis, and it's not off to a great start. Across 71 innings, Mikolas has a 5.32 ERA with a 4.59 xERA and 4.53 FIP.

Among 73 qualified starters, Mikolas ranks 61st in Stuff+. He does have the third-best Location+, however, which brings his Pitching+ rank to a respectable 38th.

Mikolas ranks in the 88th percentile among qualified pitchers in walk rate. But he doesn't do much well. He ranks in the second percentile in whiff rate and 21st percentile in strikeout rate. He ranks below average in exit velocity allowed, hard-hit rate allowed, and barrel rate allowed.

There’s nothing to suggest that Mikolas’ struggles this year are anything different as, by most metrics, he is the same guy he has been for years, which is an innings-eater who should slot in towards the back of a rotation.

The St. Louis offense ranks just 18th in wRC+ and 21st in wOBA on the season. However, these numbers are skewed a bit due to their slow start. Over the past 30 days, they rank fifth and sixth in these two categories, respectively.

By season-long Statcast metrics, the Cardinals are a bottom-ten offense. This isn’t just due to their poor start, though. Over the last 30 days, they rank 17th in hard-hit rate, 24th in barrel rate, and 23rd in exit velocity.

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Pirates vs. Cardinals

Betting Pick & Prediction

While the Cardinals’ offense has gotten good results over the last month, their underlying batted-ball metrics have not matched this production.

Their low ground ball rate and average strikeout and walk rates may actually make for a decent matchup against Skenes, but I don’t trust them to do too much damage due to their lack of quality contact.

On the other side, the Pirates hit the ball well but haven’t gotten much production to this point in the season. Mikolas won’t be able to take advantage of their propensity to strike out, which may be enough to lift the offense.

I like backing Skenes and the Pirates in this matchup.

Pick: Pirates F5 -0.5 (-106) | Play To F5 -0.5 (-115)

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