Pittsburgh Pirates (9-6) at Detroit Tigers (8-8)
MLB: Wednesday, April 17th, 2019 at 6:40 pm (Comerica Park)
Line and Odds: Pittsburgh Pirates -110/Detroit Tigers +100 Over/Under: 8
Free ESPN MLB Picks Detroit Tigers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
The Pittsburgh Pirates continued their run of playing close, competitive, baseball games. Pittsburgh opened this series with the Detroit Tigers by winning 5-3 in extra innings. From the top of the 2nd inning until the bottom of the 9th inning, Pittsburgh held the lead. Pablo Reyes singled in the 2nd inning to take a 1-0 lead. Jung Ho Kang hit a 2-run home run in the top of the 4th inning for a 3 run lead. After allowing the game to go to 3-3 in extra innings, Sterling Marte was able to hit a 2-run home run that pretty much sealed the win for the Pirates. Their last 4 outings have been either 1-run games or extra inning games. Pittsburgh is 3-1 in this recent 4 game stretch. They currently have a 9-6 record and rank 2nd-place in the NL Central. The Pirates rank 14th with a total run differential of +4.0.
Pittsburgh’s batting lineup has revealed itself to be average to below-average in the early part of this baseball season. The Pirates rank 22nd in scoring, averaging 3.73 runs per game. They rank 19th in batting average, hitting .239 on the year. The Pirates are 18th in hits per game at 8.20 per outing. Their slugging percentage of .381 is 21st in baseball, while their .312 on-base percentage is 19th. Pittsburgh has an OPS of .692, which ranks 20th in on base + slugging. OF Melky Cabrera leads the Pirates in batting average (.378) and on base percentage (.391). 1B Josh Bell leads the team in slugging percentage (.600) and OPS (.918).
Trevor Williams will be on the mound as the Pirates’ starting pitcher in this matchup with the Tigers. Williams has made 3 starts this season and he has pitched 18.1 innings. He has an ERA of 2.45 and a WHIP of 0.982. He currently has a strikeout to walk ratio of 3.00 (12 K’s to 4 BB’s). The Pirates’ pitching has ben it’s strength through 15 games. They are 5th in runs per game allowed (3.47) and #1 in opponents’ batting average (0.200). Pittsburgh is 1st in opponents’ BABIP, 4th in opponents’ strikeout percentage, and 6th in opponents’ walk percentage. They are 3rd in opponents’ slugging percentage, opponents’ on-base percentage, and opponents’ OPS.
The Detroit Tigers were unable to rebound from their slow start in game 1 of this series with Pittsburgh. By the time the bottom of the 4th inning rolled around, Detroit was already down 3-0. They were able to get a couple of runs in the 4th to bring the score back down to 3-2. A Francisco Cervelli passed ball allowed one Tiger run and a Christin Stewart double batted in another run. Detroit was held scoreless for the rest of the game, until the 9th inning. Down 3-2, 3B Jeimer Candelario singled to right center which allowed LF Dustin Peterson to score the tying run. Unfortunately for Detroit, relief pitcher Shane Greene gave up the deciding homer to Sterling Marte in the 10th inning. Detroit was unable to make a dent in the 10th inning, so they lost 5-3. They have an 8-8 record which puts them in the middle of MLB, but their run differential of -11.0 ranks 23rd in the league.
Detroit’s offensive numbers have been abysmal this season. They rank 29th out of 30 Major League Baseball teams in scoring, averaging 2.69 runs per game. Detroit is 30th in home runs per game and slugging percentage, as well. The Tigers are 26th in on base percentage, and 29th in OPS. Their batters have a strikeout percentage of 26.8% which ranks 28th in all of baseball. They are 30th in isolated power which measures the number of extra bases a team achieves per hit. Detroit often fails to turn a single into a double when they have the opportunity. LF Christin Stewart leads the Tigers in home runs, slugging percentage, and RBI, despite hitting for just a .216 average. Utilityman Niko Goodrum leads the team in on-base percentage and OPS.
Detroit’s defense and pitching have been among the best in baseball. They allow 3.27 runs per game, ranking 4th in runs allowed. They also rank 4th with batting average of .215 and hits per game allowed at 6.87. Detroit is 5th in opponents’ slugging percentage, opponents’ on-base percentage, and opponents’ OPS. The Tigers are 4th in opponents’ BABIP and 6th opponents’ isolated power. When balls are in play, they rarely give up hits. When they do give up hits, they do not give up extra bases. Detroit will send Spencer Turnbull to the mound as their starting pitcher today. He has started 3 games this season and pitched 15.0 innings. Turnbull has a 4.80 ERA and a 1.533 WHIP. He has a strikeout to walk ratio of 3.80 (19 K’s to 5 BB’s).
Cover The Spread 365 Betting Trends
Pittsburgh is 8-3 SU in its last 11 games
The total has gone OVER in 15 of Pittsburgh’s last 18 games when playing Detroit
Pittsburgh is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games when playing Detroit
Detroit is 1-5 SU in its last 6 games
Detroit is 6-12 SU in its last 18 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 10 of Detroit’s last 11 games when playing at home against Pittsburgh
ESPN MLB Scores Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Detroit Tigers
I’m taking the Pittsburgh Pirates at -110 to beat the Tigers today. I still do not have faith that the Tigers can score runs against the Pirates. Detroit has one of the worst offenses in baseball, while Pittsburgh has a great pitching staff. Pittsburgh’s hitters aren’t particularly strong, but they have been able to scratch out timely hits and RBI. I expect a low-scoring game where Pittsburgh is able to get a 2 or 3-run lead and hold it for the rest of the game. Take Pittsburgh -110.
Pittsburgh Pirates -110