The National League Central is an insanely tight race, easily the closest in baseball. Pittsburgh is home for this weekend series after dropping a two of three at Milwaukee last weekend.
Both these NL Central rivals have the same thing in mind, go into the All-Star on a high note by taking this series. Milwaukee lost series in four games at Cincinnati, leaving them 19-24 on the road this season (-5.5 units). The Brewers have won seven of eight against Pittsburgh which includes four of five at PNC Park.
The Pirates are feeling quite perky, having won their four-game set at home against the laboring Cubs. Pitt moved up to 20-20 at home and are on a 10-4 move.
The MLB odds have the Brew Crew as favorites at -116 on the money line. But are they the right choice for MLB picks? Let’s break it down.
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Milwaukee Has Pitching Edge
The scheduled starting pitchers are Zach Davies (7-2, 3.24 ERA) for the Crew and Steven Brault (3-1, 4.29) taking the ball for the Bucs.
Davies got off to a fabulous start of the season, sporting a 1.54 ERA on May 16th, but since his earned run average has steadily risen to its current level. The right-hander’s problems have been two-fold in allowing too many base-runners. Davies is conceding too many hits, 34 in 24 innings of work. This is further compounded with nine walks allowed. The 26-year has not made the sixth inning in any of his last five starts. However, he’s pitched well enough to get out of a lot of trouble.
Brault has made eight starts in his 14 appearances in 2019. Brault is not an overwhelming hurler and his weakness is keeping the ball over the plate, walking an opposing batter after about every four or five outs generated. The lefty’s struggled versus the opposing team’s best hitter’s, permitting the first four batters to have a .292 batting average and .402 on-base percentage.
Milwaukee also has an edge in the bullpen, ranked 6th in the NL in ERA, with Pittsburgh 12th.