St. Louis Cardinals (86-67) at Chicago Cubs (82-71), 2:20 p.m. ET, MLBN
|St. Louis Cardinals||+1.5 (-200)||+105||Over 10 (-105)|
|Chicago Cubs||-1.5 (+165)||-120||Under 10 (-115)|
Bettors should expect plenty of runs to come across during a pivotal National League Central showdown between the Cardinals and Cubs at Wrigley Field on Friday afternoon.
Michael Wacha (6-7, 4.76 ERA) will start for the Cardinals, and he owns a 5.35 ERA and .292 opponent batting average in 65 2/3 innings on the road this season. Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo and third baseman Kris Bryant are 31-for-80 (.388) against Wacha all-time, with six homers and 17 RBIs.
Alec Mills (1-0, 3.42 ERA) will counter for the Cubs, and he has spent most of the year at Triple-A Iowa. Mills has made two major-league starts in 2019 and allowed five runs in 10 1/3 innings.
Boston Red Sox (80-72) at Tampa Bay Rays (90-63), 7:10 p.m. ET
|Boston Red Sox||+1.5 (-130)||+155||Over 8.5 (-110)|
|Tampa Bay Rays||-1.5 (+110)||-180||Under 8.5 (-110)|
The Rays should be all over Red Sox starter Rick Porcello (13-12, 5.77 ERA), while Boston will tack on a few runs of their own against the regressing Charlie Morton (15-6, 3.16 ERA) at Tropicana Field on Friday night.
Porcello’s season to forget has only gotten worse of late, as he is 1-2 with a 9.69 ERA and .345 opponent batting average in three starts this month. The former Cy Young winner is 0-2 in three starts against the Rays this year, with a 6.23 ERA and .315 opponent batting average. Outfielder Avisail Garcia, who owns a 1.038 OPS over his last seven games, has been particularly lethal against Porcello, with 12 hits in 30 prior at-bats (.400).
Morton is a mediocre 5-4 with a 4.52 ERA and 1.220 WHIP since the All-Star break (12 starts). Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who owns a .984 OPS in 23 at-bats against Morton, should help keep the Red Sox offense afloat.