MLB Baseball Betting: St. Louis Cardinals at Miami Marlins

MLB Baseball Betting:  St. Louis Cardinals at Miami Marlins

Full card of baseball action on Friday and at the top of the board is a matchup of two second place teams trying to run down their divisional leader. The St. Louis cardinals are 6.5 games back of the NL Central leading Chicago Cubs and have won 7 of their last 10 (pending the outcome of Thursday’s action). They’re 1 1/2 games up on the third place Pittsburgh Pirates. The Miami Marlins have won 6 of 10 and have a two game advantage over the third place New York Mets. They’ve narrowed the Washington Nationals’ lead atop the NL East to 4 games.

St. Louis will start right hander Mike Leake who is the epitome of ‘mediocre’ this season’. St. Louis has a 9-11 record in his 20 starts though they have won 6 of his 10 road assignments. Leake has a 4.24 ERA overall with a 1.228 WHIP and a 3.90 ERA with a 1.317 WHIP on the road. They’ve also won two of his last three games with Leake putting up a 3.79 ERA and a 1.263 WHIP. He has an impressive walk to strike out ratio in that stretch–19 innings pitched he’s got 25 strikeouts with no walks. Leake has dominated the Marlins throughout his career though he hasn’t faced the team this season. His career ERA–1.33 is definitely solid.

Miami will counter with right hander Jose Urena who has looked very impressive in two starts since returning to the Marlins’ rotation. It’s somewhat surprising since he was ineffective as a starter last year and as a long relief pitcher earlier this season. He’s worked on a two seam fastball which is giving hitters fits though it’s important to keep his ‘body of work’ in perspective–he’s put up good numbers against two of the worst offensive teams in the league (NY Mets and Philadelphia Phillies). Still, considering that Miami was expecting nothing out of Urena the team has to be pleased. In his two starts in 2016 he’s gone 11 2/3 winnings allowing 8 hits, 2 earned runs and 9 strikeouts to just one walk. That’s a 1.54 ERA and a 0.771 WHIP with the Marlins going 1-1 in his two assignments.

Urena is still a question mark and it’ll be interesting to see how he fares against a team that can actually hit the ball. Cardinals are 29-17 +14 units on the road and 41-30 +8 units against RHP this year.