Saturday afternoon baseball and we will see the St Louis Cardinals take on the Cincinnati Reds in game 2 of their 3 game series from Great American Ballpark. The game is scheduled for a 4:05 (ET) pm start time and it will be televised live on Fox . Currently the ODDS have St Louis favored at -105, while Cincinnati is dogs of -101. The total for the game sits at 8.5 runs. 70% of the Public is currently on the Reds, while 75% is on the OVER. Get all the Public's action by clicking HERE.
Free Analysis: The St. Louis Cardinals likely need a sweep of their three-game series this weekend in Cincinnati to maintain any realistic hope of catching the Reds and claiming the National League Central crown. That goal is still intact after last night's 8-5 win. Allen Craig and Yadier Molina each had three hits including a home run and Skip Schumaker added three hits as the Cardinals scored eight runs on 14 hits. On the mound Lance Lynn allowed six hits and four runs while lasting just two innings as Joe Kelly got the win and Jason Motte earned his 30th save. For today’s game St. Louis starts Jamie Garcia who has lost his last two decisions. Garcia (3-4, 4.00) was impressive in his return from the disabled list Sunday, piling up a career-high 10 strikeouts and allowing just two unearned runs in eight innings against the Pirates. He didn't factor in the decision, though, and doesn't have a win since May 16. Garcia faced the Reds twice in April, getting a no-decision in a loss at Cincinnati and tossing seven innings of one-run ball for a win in St. Louis. He is 7-1 with a 3.12 ERA in 11 games (nine starts) against the Reds. The Reds have been tough to beat at Great American Ball Park - they lead the majors with a 41-23 home mark and haven't lost a series there since dropping two of three to Minnesota from June 22-24. On Friday Todd Frazier had three hits and Brandon Phillips and Scott Rolen had two hits each as the Reds scored five runs on 12 hits in all. On the mound starter Mat Latos allowed nine hits and seven earned runs while striking out five over five innings to go to 10-4 on the year. For today’s game Cincinnati starts Mike Leake who has pitched well but was hit hard in his last outing. Leake followed his best outing of the year - a complete-game win against the Mets - with one of his worst, allowing a season-high seven runs in 4 1/3 innings in a loss at Philadelphia on Monday. He'll try to get back on track by beating the Cardinals for the first time in three starts this season. He is 1-2 with a 5.24 ERA in five career games (four starts) against St. Louis. The heart of the Reds' batting order - 2B Brandon Phillips (5-for-26), OF Jay Bruce (4-for-21) and OF Ryan Ludwick (0-for-7) - has struggled against Garcia, as has 3B Scott Rolen (3-for-16).
Free Pick: Im going to go with the Cards in this one. Jaime Garcia may have come back to the Cards at the right time. He did struggle in his two starts before being placed on the DL, but in his lone start since his return he pitched 8 shutout innings vs the Pirates. Jaime has done well vs the Reds in his Career, posting a 2.78 ERA in his last 10 starts vs them, with the Cards going 8-2 in those starts. Mike Leake has struggled of late, going just 2-2 with a 6.24 ERA in his last 6 starts. Mike is 2-4 with a 5.40 ERA at home and 0-1 with a 5.80 ERA in 6 day starts this year. Not good numbers when your about to face the hottest offense in baseball as the Cards come in having scored 40+ runs in their last 6 games. ST Louis is desperate to keep winning and they have the offense and the advantage on the mound to get it done here.
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