MLB handicapper Dalton Brown is back with two more plays on a packed Wednesday night slate across the baseball landscape.
4:05 p.m. ET: Cincinnati Reds at Baltimore Orioles: OVER 9 (-118) at FanDuel
The Cincinnati Reds and Baltimore Orioles will finish out their three-game series Wednesday night from Oriole Park at Camden Yards, and I expect we see plenty of scoring.
Luke Weaver pitches for Cincinnati, a righty who has been hit unbelievably hard all season - but especially in June. Weaver has surrendered a 10.80 ERA this month, averaging five earned runs each time he heads to the mound. Over his last 16.2 innings of work, a whopping 37 opposing runners have reached base against him.
Baltimore turns to a righty of its own in Kyle Gibson, who has pitched to a 5.75 ERA of his own in June and lasted just three innings in his last appearance. His results this season have been high-variance in general, but he's been much more hittable of late.
Each team is comfortable facing righties right now, too - since May 15, both lineups rank top-10 in baseball in wRC+ vs. right-handed pitching. Both bullpens offer opportunities for additional scoring as well, ranking 20th (Baltimore) and 28th (Cincinnati) in xFIP since June 1.
7:05 p.m. ET: San Diego Padres at Pittsburgh Pirates: Pirates First 5 Innings moneyline (+133) at BetRivers
The San Diego Padres and Pittsburgh Pirates will continue their three-game set from PNC Park on Wednesday, and I am backing the Bucs at home over the game's early innings.
Righty ace Mitch Keller starts for the Pirates, a pitcher who has seen his share of ups and downs of late but has overall been excellent, evidenced by his 3.26 xERA. Two of his last three starts have been lights out, 7-inning performances in which he's only allowed one earned run - and his 2.78 ERA at home sets him up nicely for a solid start against the inconsistent Padres.
San Diego will send Yu Darvish to the mound, a righty who doesn't inspire much confidence at the moment. Darvish has surrendered four or more earned runs in five of his last seven starts, and fewer than three earned runs just once in his last seven. He posted a 5.74 ERA in May, and he's followed it with a 5.40 mark in June - at some point, this is just who he is now, and his 6.16 road ERA for the season isn't very convincing either heading into Wednesday.
I give a clear starting pitching edge here to the Pirates, and what evidence do we really have that San Diego is the better of these two teams right now? Plus-133 is a bargain with Keller on the mound, but let's avoid the Pirates' struggling bullpen.