Thursday MLB NRFI Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Approach First Inning of This NL Central Rivalry (Aug. 4)

Thursday MLB NRFI Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Approach First Inning of This NL Central Rivalry (Aug. 4) article feature image

Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images. Pictured: Marcus Stroman (Cubs)

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 vs. Cardinals — No Runs First Inning (-130)

MatchupCubs (Stroman) vs. Cardinals (Mikolas)
First Pitch1:15 p.m. ET
Best LineFanDuel

On Thursday, we head to St. Louis to find value in a NRFI between two National League teams.

The Cubs will send out their newly-acquired pitcher Marcus Stroman. Coming into today, Stroman is 11-2 to the NRFI, with seven of his 11 wins coming on the road.

Stroman has been an outstanding NRFI pitcher since 2020, as he's 39-6 to the NRFI across two different teams.

When playing a NRFI first inning, walks are crucial. Stroman has faced 55 total first-inning batters and has only issued a total of three walks, showing great command early on.

Here's how he has done in the past against these Cardinals hitters:

  • Dylan Carlson: 1-for-5
  • Nolan Gorman: 1-for-3
  • Nolan Arenado: 4-for-15

The Cardinals' projected leadoff hitter, Dylan Carlson, is just 2-for-18 in his last seven days. Right behind him — and possibly entering a slump — is Nolan Arenado, who is just 3-for-14.

The Cardinals will counter with 2022 NRFI standout Miles Mikolas. Coming into today, he's 17-4 to the NRFI, placing him firmly among the best NRFI pitchers in the league.

When facing hitters the first time through the order, he has held them in check, only allowing a .164 average.

Here's how these Cubs hitters have done in the past against Mikolas:

  • Patrick Wisdom: 2-for-6
  • Christopher Morel: 1-for-6
  • Rafael Ortega: 2-for-6
  • Nico Hoerner: 2-for-7

The projected No. 2 and No. 4 hitters today for the Cubs — Seiya Suzuki and Hoerner — are hitting a combined 3-for-37.

Despite both of these teams being one of the better first-inning offenses, they both are on a hot NRFI streak. The Cubs have achieved the NRFI in nine of their last 10 games, and the Cardinals have a NRFI in their last eight games.

Bet on these two pitchers to have a collective three up/three down first inning.

Take the NRFI between the Cubs and the Cardinals.

As always, six outs to glory.

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