The Milwaukee Brewers took three of four at the Pittsburgh Pirates last weekend at PNC Park, and on Friday night the NL Central rivals open their first series of the year at Miller Park. The Brewers are favored on the MLB lines.
Pirates vs Brewers MLB Spread, Game Info & Predictions
- When: Friday, 8:10 PM ET
- Where: Miller Park
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Rookie Davis/Brandon Woodruff
- TV: MLB Extra Innings
- Stream: MLB.tv
- Radio: Pittsburgh / Milwaukee
- Opening MLB Lines: Brewers -230, Pirates +210 (total 9)
Why Bet on Pittsburgh?
Beginning Friday the Bucs are scheduled to play 16 of their next 21 games on the road, where they have won five of their last seven games and have gone 17-13 overall.
The Bucs remain without injured catcher Francisco Cervelli, shortstop Erik Gonzalez and left fielder Corey Dickerson. Outfielder Gregory Polanco may have broken out of his slump Wednesday by going went 3-for-4 with an RBI, a run scored and two stolen bases in a 7-4 win over the Braves. He singled in the second inning and then rode home on Elias Diaz’s dinger later in the frame. Polanco drove in a run with a double in the third. The two stolen bases were the first of the season for Polanco. He has a .260 batting average with five homers and 16 RBI after missing the first month of the season due to a shoulder injury.
Starling Marte has reached double digits in stolen bases for the eighth straight year. He is the first Pirates player to record at least 10 stolen bases in eight consecutive seasons since Max Carey did it 16 straight years from 1911-1926. Beginning with the action on April 30, the Pirates have produced the fourth-highest batting average (.278) in the Major Leagues and the second-best in the National League behind the Rockies (.290).
Rookie Davis (yep, that’s his name) will enter the rotation to start Friday against the Brewers. Davis has been a reliever in all four of his major-league appearances this season, though he’s been predominantly a starter throughout his professional career. He hasn’t pitched longer than three innings since joining the Pirates on May 25, but he should still be stretched out after being a starter in the minor leagues for most of the season. Davis has allowed five runs on eight hits and three walks while striking out eight in 7 2/3 innings over four relief appearances.
Davis is 0-1 with a 13.50 ERA in two career appearances (one start) vs. the Brewers. He pitched 2.0 scoreless innings of relief last Saturday at PNC Park. He also gave up 11 hits and eight runs (seven earned) while losing a 9-4 decision to Wily Peralta while starting for the Reds on 4/26/17 at Miller Park.
- Runs: 4.31
- Hits: 9.07
- Walks: 2.66
- Strike Outs: 8.23
- Runs: 5.41
- Hits: 8.95
- Walks: 3.61
- Strike Outs: 8.84
Why Bet on Milwaukee?
Earlier this week, the Brewers surprisingly sent down top prospect Keston Hiura to make room for Travis Shaw off the injured list. Hiura looked every bit the part of a top prospect during his first taste of big-league action. In 17 games, he slashed .281/.333/.531 with an .865 OPS. And while he did strike out 23 times in 69 plate appearances, he also hit five home runs and drove in nine. He’ll surely be back up soon as the everyday second baseman.
Catcher Yasmani Grandal is batting .323 (20-for62) with 7 HR and 16 RBI over his last 18 games. Reliever Adrian Houser has not surrendered an earned run in 9 of his last 10 appearances, posting a 0.98 ERA (18.1ip, 2er). He has held opponents to a .200 BA during this stretch (12-for-60).
Brandon Woodruff gets the call for the Brew Crew. Woodruff allowed six runs on 10 hits with five strikeouts and two walks across four innings in a no-decision against the Pirates on Saturday. While Woodruff managed to avoid the loss, the Brewers spotted him a five-run lead, so he should have held it. The 26-year-old started slowly at the beginning of the season, but he hadn’t yielded more than two runs in any of his previous six starts before Saturday. The 10 hits Woodruff allowed was a season high too. Overall, he remains 7-1 and now owns a 3.82 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 80 strikeouts in 68.1 innings this season.
Woodruff is 0-1 with an 8.31 ERA in 4 career games (2 starts) against the Pirates (13ip, 12er), including last Saturday’s no-decision at PNC Park. In his previous two starts last week, Woodruff had a pair of eight-inning gems against the Phillies and Braves in which he allowed three earned runs in 16 innings.
- Runs: 4.95
- Hits: 8.63
- Walks: 3.76
- Strike Outs: 9.65
- Runs: 4.94
- Hits: 8.81
- Walks: 3.54
- Strike Outs: 9.30
Brewers vs Pirates MLB Betting Trends
- Brewers are 8-0 in Woodruff’s last 8 starts with 5 days of rest.
- Brewers are 4-0 in Woodruff’s last 4 Friday starts.
- Brewers are 8-1 in Woodruff’s last 9 home starts.
- Brewers are 14-3 in Woodruff’s last 17 starts.
- Over is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings.
- Pirates are 1-4 in the last 5 meetings.
Expert MLB Prediction for Brewers vs Pirates
Brewers 7, Pirates 3