Looks to be a sizable pitching mismatch on Monday from Cincinnati in favor of the Reds against the NL Central rival Pittsburgh Pirates. The home team is a sizable favorite on the MLB Odds behind All-Star Sonny Gray, while the Bucs go with struggling Jordan Lyles.
Pirates vs Reds MLB Spread & Expert Pick
- When: Monday, 7:10 PM ET
- Where: Great American Ball Park
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Jordan Lyles/Sonny Gray
- TV: MLB Extra Innings
- Live Stream: MLB.tv
- Radio: SiriusXM
- MLB Spread: Cincinnati Reds -1.5 (Total 9.5)
Why Bet on Pittsburgh?
Pittsburgh All-Star first baseman Josh Bell was not in the lineup Sunday. Bell injured his hand on a play at first base Saturday, although he remained in the game. Bell gone 9-for-56 (.161) in his last 17 games since going 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI on 7/5. His 27 home runs are a single-season career-high; the last Bucco to hit 30 HR was Pedro Alvarez (36 in 2013). Bell leads all Major League players in RBI (86) and extra-base hits (63); has 3 extra-base hits in his last 17 games.
The Bucs’ Jordan Lyles (5-7) allowed eight runs (five earned) on seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts across 1.2 innings while a lopsided defeat against the Cardinals on Wednesday. After a 1-2-3 first inning, things just absolutely apart during the second. The frame started with an error, but then the Cardinals posted four extra-base hits, including two homers, before Lyles recorded the first out. Ultimately, Lyles only registered a second out in the frame before getting the hook because the Pirates threw a runner out at the plate. The error did him no favors to start the inning, but that doesn’t offset the right-hander having allowed six extra-base hits overall in one frame.
Lyles has been a mess recently, giving up at least seven runs in three of his last four starts. He has also lost six straight decisions, as he’s fallen to 5-7 with a 5.36 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, and 90 strikeouts in 82.1 innings.
He is 4-2 with a 4.30 ERA (58.2ip/28er) in 16 career games (nine starts) vs. the Reds and 0-1 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts this season; Lyles pitched 5.0 scoreless innings and received a no-decision in his Pirates debut on 4/4 at PNC Park and suffered a loss on 5/28 at GABP (4.0ip/3er); he left the game with left hamstring discomfort. Lyles has posted a 2.22 ERA (24.1ip/6er) in his last nine games against the Reds.
- Runs: 4.61
- Hits: 9.36
- Walks: 2.63
- Strike Outs: 7.80
- Runs: 5.31
- Hits: 9.04
- Walks: 3.61
- Strike Outs: 8.80
Why Bet on Cincinnati?
In Sunday’s win over Colorado, Josh VanMeter extended his career-high hitting streak to 4 games with his 2nd inning single. This season when facing starting pitchers for the 1st time in a game, VanMeter is 11-for-22 (.500) this season, including being 4-for-4 during his current hitting streak. José Iglesias retook the team lead in batting average with RISP from Yasiel Puig. With his 2nd inning RBI single with runners on the corners, he is now 26-for-78 (.333) with RISP. Puig is hitting .330.
In the first inning, the Reds lead the Major Leagues in runs scored (85), HR (30), RBI (82), batting average (.307), slugging percentage (.590) and on-base percentage (.372). They have outscored opponents in the first frame, 85-50, and are 25-8 when leading after the first inning.
All-Star Sonny Gray (5-6, 3.29) was originally scheduled to pitch over the weekend, but the right-hander will be afforded an extra day of rest before his next start with Alex Wood (back) rejoining the rotation Sunday.
Gray allowed just a run over six quality innings but didn’t factor into the decision against the Brewers last Monday. Gray allowed just four hits with two walks, and he whiffed seven. The only blemish in terms of run prevention was an RBI double off to the bat of Yasmani Grandal in the third inning. Outside of that, the 29-year-old wasn’t challenged, and he kept the Milwaukee lineup off-balance all evening. His ERA drops to 3.29, and his K/BB is an outstanding 127/38 over 109 1/3 innings.
Gray has been fantastic and consistent of late. Over his last five starts since June 28, he is 2-1 with a 1.62 ERA, seven walks and 42 strikeouts over 33 1/3 innings. His curveball has been his most effective pitch, helping him rack up Ks.
- Runs: 4.46
- Hits: 8.24
- Walks: 2.89
- Strike Outs: 8.76
- Runs: 4.20
- Hits: 7.96
- Walks: 3.32
- Strike Outs: 9.63
Pirates vs Reds MLB Betting Trends
- Pirates are 0-7 in Lyles’ last 7 starts vs. National League Central
- Reds are 5-1 in Gray’s last 6 starts when their opponent allows 5 runs or more in their previous game
- Pirates are 1-10 SU in their last 11 games on the road
- The total has gone OVER in 8 of Pittsburgh’s last 10 games played on a Monday
- Reds are 4-8 SU in their last 12 games when playing at home against Pittsburgh
- The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Cincinnati’s last 13 games against an opponent in the National League Central division
Expert Final Score Prediction for Pirates vs Reds
Pittsburgh Pirates 3 – Cincinnati Reds 6