Brewers vs. Cardinals Total & Moneyline Picks
Milwaukee Brewers (73-47) vs. St. Louis Cardinals (61-57)
When: 7:45 p.m., Wednesday, August 18
Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis
Moneyline: MIL -120/STL +100 (BAS)
Runline: Brewers -1.5/Cardinals +1.5
Starting Pitchers: Freddy Peralta (9-3, 2.26 ERA, 0.91 WHIP) vs. Jack Flaherty (9-1, 2.65 ERA, 0.97 WHIP)
When the Cardinals chose not to fold their tents at the trade deadline, they had one good reason for doing so: they still had plenty of opportunities to strike against the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers’ win over the Redbirds on Tuesday marked just the seventh time all season that the sides have actually faced each other, leaving 12 more meetings to come over the final 40+ games of the season.
However, it appears that the Cardinals have miscalculated because the Brewers don’t look like they’re in any position to be caught by anybody. Milwaukee is currently 8.5 games up on second-place Cincinnati and is doing exactly what it needs to do: locking down the NL Central without accidentally catching up to the Giants and Dodgers. The Brewers are in an awkward position right now of trying to keep the wins coming but not win so many games that they end up in first place and have to face the wild card winner because they’d likely end up in a first-round matchup with either the Dodgers or Giants instead of the much more-beatable Braves or Phillies. So far, it’s working well for Milwaukee, as the Brewers are still five games back of the Giants for the best record in the National League.
Getting the Job Done
When Freddy Peralta takes the ball, you can safely count on one thing: he’s going to handle his responsibilities on the mound. What happens on the other side of the field is out of his control, which is why the over has cashed in three of his past ten starts. But in all three instances where the over has hit, it hasn’t been because Peralta did anything wrong. Instead, it’s because the Brewers’ bats got going. In Peralta’s last ten starts, the four that didn’t go under the total stayed above or at the number because the Brewers put up at least seven runs, as opposed to anything that Peralta didn’t get done. In those four starts, Milwaukee’s opponent put up a combined seven runs, with just three of those coming against the Brewers’ starter. When Peralta takes the mound, it’s pretty easy to feel confident in backing him to shut down the other team to some extent, which is one reason why the total is so low on this one.
Regaining His Form
The conventional wisdom surrounding Jack Flaherty was that his 2020 season was more of an anomaly caused by baseball’s 60-game sprint rather than a regression after a superb second half of the 2019 campaign. With six weeks to go in the season, it looks like that wisdom was correct, as Flaherty has been even better in 2021 than he was in 2019. Flaherty’s ERA is down to 2.65 this season from 2.75 in 2019, and his win-loss record has been outstanding, as he’s posted a 9-1 mark. When he’s pitching at Busch Stadium, he’s really been something worth watching. In 25 innings at Busch Stadium this year, he’s gone 4-0 with a 1.44 ERA and an 0.72 WHIP, leaving many a hitter frustrated on their trip to St. Louis. The last time he faced Milwaukee, the total was a mere 6.5 runs — and the teams still came in under it because Flaherty tossed six scoreless innings as the Cardinals claimed a 2-0 victory.
- The Brewers are 5-0 in their past five road games against a team with a winning record.
- The Brewers are 38-13 in their past 51 games following a win.
- The Cardinals have won six of their past seven games.
- The Cardinals are 8-3 in their past 11 following a loss.
- The under is 6-2-2 in the Brewers’ past 10 Wednesday games.
- The over is 8-3-3 in the Brewers’ past 14 games as a road favorite.
- The under is 5-2 in the Cardinals’ past seven games overall.
- The under is 15-5 in the Cardinals’ past 20 games as a home underdog.
- The Brewers are 5-2 in the past seven meetings in St. Louis.
- The under is 6-2 in the past eight meetings in St. Louis.
It’s going to be relatively warm by the Mississippi River, with temperatures pushing 91 degrees and winds blowing toward the third-base side of the field at eight miles per hour.
The Cardinals have the pitching to keep this close, but I can’t see Milwaukee giving up ground in this one. The Brewers are playing too well and are getting too good of a performance from their pitching staff to waste it in this matchup.
I prefer the under as my main bet, but for the game result, I’ll back the Brewers.