The Cincinnati Reds are clearly a team on the rise in the National League and in fact are Mybookie betting favorites to win the NL Central for the first time since 2012. The Reds welcome the awful Detroit Tigers in interleague action Friday to open the MLB season.
How to Bet Tigers at Reds MLB Odds & TV Info
- When: Friday, 6:10 PM ET
- Where: Great American Ball Park
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Matthew Boyd/Sonny Gray
- TV: MLB Network
- Radio: http://mlb.mlb.com/media/player/mpa/?c_id=mlb
- Opening MLB Lines: Reds -178, Tigers +164 (total 8)
Why Bet on Detroit?
Detroit won a league-low 47 games last year and probably won’t be any better this season. One bright spot was Victor Reyes, who finished the year hitting .304/.336/.431 with 16 doubles, five triples, three home runs and 25 RBI in 69 games. Among American League batters with at least 275 at-bats, Reyes ranked tied for 12th in batting average. Over the final two months of the season, Reyes batted .325/.347/.467 with 13 doubles, four triples, three home runs and 21 RBI.
The Tigers were going to stink anyway, but they look awful overall especially with three starting pitchers ailing. Recently, the team put right-hander Jordan Zimmermann on the 45-day injured with a right forearm strain. The veteran missed around two months last season with a similar issue. He’s opting for rehab over surgery for now, but there’s a real chance he’s thrown his final pitch for Detroit. Zimmermann is in the final year of his five-year, $110 million deal with the Tigers.
Daniel Norris (COVID-19) is iffy for the start of the season and Michael Fulmer is working his way back from Tommy John surgery.
It’s lefty Matthew Boyd on the bump here. Boyd makes his first career Opening Day start coming off a season in which he emerged as the top starter in the Tigers’ rotation. He posted a 9-12 record and a 4.56 ERA (185.1IP/94ER) on 178 hits, 50 walks and 238 strikeouts. His marks in innings pitched, strikeouts, games played (32) and FIP (4.36) each established single-season career highs, while he notched nine wins for the second time (other, 2018).
Boyd was one of baseball’s top strikeout pitchers in 2019, finishing the year with those 238 punchouts, which ranked sixth in the American League and tied for 10th in the Majors. Boyd also established a franchise record with 11.56 strikeouts per nine innings, topping the previous record of 11.08 set in 2012 by Max Scherzer. Boyd’s 238 strikeouts were the fifth-highest total by a lefthanded pitcher in Tigers history and were the most since Mickey Lolich struck out 250 batters in 1972.
Why Bet on Cincinnati?
David Bell went 75-87 (.463) in his first season as a Major League manager last year for the Reds. He and his father, Buddy, is the fourth father-son duo to serve as modern Major League managers, joining George & Dick Sisler, Bob & Joel Skinner and Bob & Aaron Boone.
Third baseman Eugenio Suárez ranked second in the Major Leagues with a career-high 49 HR, a record for a player from Venezuela and the National League record for HR in a season by a player at that position. Suárez fell short in his bid to become the sixth Reds batter to lead the National League in HR and first since George Foster hit 40 HR in 1978.
This offseason, the Reds spent like crazy in adding second baseman Mike Moustakas (4 years, $64 million), starting pitcher LHP Wade Miley (2 years, $15 million), outfielder Shogo Akimaya (3 years, $21 million), outfielder Nick Castellanos (4 years, $64 million) and reliever Strop (1 year, $1.825 million).
It’s Sonny Gray on the mound. Last year, he ranked among the National League leaders in ERA (2.87, 5th), opponents’ BA (.196, 2nd), fewest hits per 9 IP (6.26, 2nd), most strikeouts per 9 IP (10.52, 10th), fewest walks/hits per inning (1.08, 8th), road ERA (2.71, 3rd) and night ERA (2.78, 3rd). Gray enters the 2020 season with an active streak of 33 consecutive starts, beginning 8/25/18 and including all 31 starts in 2019, without allowing more than 6 hits. That is the longest such streak in Major League history (excluding “openers”)
The Reds are 13-13 all-time vs the Tigers, including a 2-game series sweep win in June 2018 at Great American Ball Park and a 2-game series sweep loss in July/August 2018 at Comerica Park. The Reds beat the Tigers, 4 games to 3, in the 1940 World Series. Beginning in 1997, the Reds are 157-218 all-time vs the AL, at .419 the lowest interleague winning percentage of any Major League team.
- Tigers are 7-19 in their last 26 interleague road games vs. a right-handed starter.
- Tigers are 13-40 in their last 53 games as a road underdog.
- Reds are 6-2 in their last 8 interleague home games.
- Reds are 5-2 in their last 7 interleague games as a favorite.
- Reds are 9-19 in their last 28 interleague games.
- Tigers are 2-5 in the last 7 meetings.
Expert PredictionReds 7, Tigers 2