St. Louis Cardinals (2-3) vs. Milwaukee Brewers (4-1) Preview – Betting Pick
Date: Wednesday, April 4th, 2018
Pitchers: Carlos Martinez (0-1 8.31 ERA, 2.30 WHIP) vs. Jhoulys Chacin (0-0 10.81 ERA, 2.70 WHIP)
Where: Miller Mark, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
When: 7:40PM EST
by Kevin, Expert MLB Handicapper, Predictem.com
Betting Odds: St. Louis -110/Milwaukee +100
The Cards opened as a small -120 favorite. At time of print, the line had dropped to Stl -100/Mil +100 at most sportsbooks (you can get +102 at 5Dimes) despite only 42% of the action coming in on the Brewers.
The Cards and Brew Crew meet up for the rubber game of a 3 game set Wednesday after a spectacular ending yesterday in which Milwaukee was down 4-5 going into the bottom of the 9th when Christian Yelich lined one over the right center field wall to tie it then and the next hitter, Ryan Braun, came up to bat and promptly belted one over the left center field wall for an incredible walk-off win. Ironically, the game started the same way with back to back dingers by Cards hitters Dexter Fowler and Tommy Pham.
The visiting St. Louis Cardinals send their ace pitcher Carlos Martinez to the mound. Martinez looked bad vs. the Mets in his first start of the season as he lasted only 4.1 innings, allowing 4 hits and 6 free passes. One thing I like to look at early in the season is the historical performance of a pitcher during the month of April. Some guys come in shape, prepared and mentally sharp, while others don’t. In Martinez’s case, this is a guy who “brought it” at the start of 2015 (1.93 ERA) and 2016 (1.73). Not so much last year though, as he sported a yuck 4.73 ERA and an ugly WHIP of 1.47. That trend seems to have continued this season as he had a lackluster preseason with a 4.82 ERA and uncharacteristic 1.82 WHIP. It’s not so much that he’s getting hit hard, it’s his lack of command. In the preseason, he gave up 7 walks in only 9.1 innings. In his first regular season start at Citi Field vs the Mets, he gave up a whopping 6 bases on balls in only 4.1 innings. This is a red flag that we will be looking to capitalize on today. Before we move on, another thing we like is that last season on the road, Martinez gave up 18 longballs in only 107 innings. The roof will be closed at Miller Park today as the temperature is only 31 degrees. As you may or may not know, the ball carries extremely well in Milwaukee when the roof is closed.
The Milwaukee Brewers send the jeckyl and hyde Jhoulys Chacin to the hill. This guy is a trip. He almost always gets shelled on the road and seemingly always pitches well at home. There are many reasons that could cause this. Some players simply experience physiological changes when taken out of their normal environment. I’d bet that he has some sort of ten thousand dollar tempur-pedic bed at home and/or eats a certain way and then goes on the road and struggles with crappy hotel beds and eats differently. His home/road splits are simply stifling and too consistent not to take serious note of. Chacin is 0-5 in 6 career starts vs. Stl, and my take on him last week was wrong, however, I’m going to look past all that as this guy has proven that his home/road splits take precedence with regards to statistics.
Pitcher vs. Hitter Notables
The current Brewers lineup has had good success vs. Martinez:
Travis Shaw 3-8 HR
Eric Thames 3-10 HR
Christian Yelich 4-8
Lorenzo Cain 2-4
Domingo Santana 6-17 HR
Jonathan Villar 8/23 HR.
The Cards haven’t seen much of Chacin as only Yadier Molina has many at bats against him (5-15). Matt Carpenter is the only player with a dinger against him, has he’s gone 2-6 with 1 HR.
Other Things I Like
The wrong team is favored here… This is a typical case of oddsmakers relying on a big name pitcher mixed with public perception to create a false favorite. Furthermore, the Cards are on the road and not playing well as they’re 2-3. On the flip side, the Brewers have started off like gangbusters at 4-1 and are sleeping in their own beds and playing in the friendly confines of Miller Park.
Now on to what I really like… I know an old ex-Major Leaguer that I bounce questions off of every chance I get… Once I asked him what one of the toughest things to deal with was when playing on the road. Besides sleeping in hotel beds and jet lag, he said that his team always came out flat and had an emotional let down after getting beat the day before by a walkoff OR an extra innings loss. With that being said, I believe the stars are aligned for another Brewer win tonight.
Kevin’s pick to win the game: Milwaukee Brewers +100. With Martinez
lacking command early on, the Brewers having hit him well (historically),
the emotional letdown working against Stl and the positive vibe in the Brewers
clubhouse, I love me some Brewers tonight! Good day and good luck! Bet
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