MLB Picks: St. Louis Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates

The St. Louis Cardinals (18-18) and Pittsburgh Pirates (15-20) will continue a National League Central series Saturday night at PNC Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m. ET

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates 

The St. Louis Cardinals are 4-7 on the road with a money line of -100 to -125
The St. Louis Cardinals are 4-7 on the road with a money line of -100 to -125

St. Louis has alternated wins and losses over its last four games, as it looks to bounce back from a 6-4 defeat to Pittsburgh as -119 road favorites Friday, while going OVER the betting total for a second consecutive affair.  Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta is leading the offense recently—hitting .393 over the course of a seven-game hitting streak to boost his average to a season-best .240.  St. Louis is 4-7 on the road with a money line of -100 to -125, with the UNDER going 7-4 in that situation.

Cardinals starting pitcher Lance Lynn (4-1, 3.51 ERA) hasn’t earned a decision in his last two efforts, including a 5-4 road win over the Chicago Cubs last time out, as he allowed two runs and three hits over six innings of work.  The right-hander is 3-1 with a 2.40 ERA in five road outings, with opposing hitters batting .204 against him.  In 11 career appearances (nine starts) versus the Pirates, Lynn has compiled a 4-2 record and 5.03 ERA.

Pittsburgh as won three games in a row, but has outscored opponents by just four runs over that span.  The Pirates have scored 60 of their 140 runs in the seventh inning or later, while outfielder Jose Tabata is the main player to watch at the plate in this matchup—hitting .350 in his career against the Cardinals and .261 versus all other teams.  Pittsburgh is 26-21 as home underdogs of +100 to +125 the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER going 29-17 in that situation.

Pirates starting pitcher Edinson Volquez (1-3, 4.19 ERA) has suffered three consecutive setbacks, including a 7-2 home defeat to the Toronto Blue Jays last time out, as he gave up six runs and seven hits over five innings of work.  The right-hander is 1-2 with a 3.71 ERA in five home games (four starts)—issuing six walks and striking out 15 batters in 26.2 combined frames.  In 12 lifetime outings versus the Cardinals, Volquez has gone 3-6 with a 5.56 ERA.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as the OVER is 6-2-1 in the Pirates nine games this month.

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