10:10 p.m. ET – Indians (-115) at Mariners O/U: 7.5
The 21-14 Indians take on the 18-20 Mariners for the second game of a four-game series on Friday night at T-Mobile Park. These two teams are headed in different directions, as Cleveland has won four games in a row and Seattle has lost five in a row. The Indians secured a 4-2 win in the series opener on Thursday night, but the story was Cleveland starter Zach Plesac.
About the Indians
Cleveland sits one game behind the White Sox for first place in the American League Central, despite having the lowest payroll in Major League Baseball. The team shipped franchise cornerstone Francisco Lindor to the Mets in the offseason and it outraged Indians’ fans everywhere, but the team somehow just keeps winning.
The lineup has been nothing special this season, averaging the 17th-most runs in MLB at 4.1. Jose Ramirez hit his American League-leading 11th home run on Thursday night and has now homered in three of his last seven games. Right fielder Franmil Reyes leads the team with a .265 batting average and also joined the fun last night, hitting his ninth home run of the season.
The story of the team is surely the pitching staff,. How can a team that has lost Trevor Bauer, Carlos Carrasco and Mike Clevinger walk out the door over the last two seasons still have a top-five MLB rotation. Well, it is happening. Cleveland allows the fifth-fewest runs per game in the big leagues, allowing only 3.6 runs to cross the plate per game. The bullpen is the stingiest in Major League Baseball with a 2.59 ERA. The Indians are living proof that it is still possible to pitch yourselves into the playoffs, even in this home run happy era.
About the Mariners
The Mariners were one of the most fun storylines to talk about in late April as they sat atop the American League West. Well, now Seattle has come down to earth and currently sits in third place with a run differential of negative-25. The Mariners average 3.9 runs scored per game, which is the seventh-fewest in the majors.
Seattle struggles to string hits together and with only 6.3 hits per game, they rank last in all of baseball. A breath of fresh air came over the franchise on Thursday when top prospect Jarred Kelenic made his major league debut. The left fielder went 0-for-4, but he provides a sense of optimism for Mariner fans as he stands in the outfield with 2020 Rookie of the Year Kyle Lewis. While the future is bright, the best player for Seattle right now is 2018 All-Star right fielder Mitch Haniger.
Haniger is batting .252 with 10 home runs and 27 RBI so far this season, leading the team in all categories among qualified hitters. The Mariners pitching staff has helped keep them in games this season, with an average if not spectacular team ERA of 4.34. The starting rotation is a mixture of veteran arms and young prospects, which has led to inconsistent outings to this point on the season.
|Teams||Spread||Money Line||Total Points|
|Cleveland Indians||-1½ (+140)||-115||O 7½ (-110)|
|Seattle Mariners||+1½ (-170)||-105||U 7½ (-110)|
The Pitching Matchup
Cleveland is handing the ball to right-hander Adam Civale, who is 5-0 with a 2.91 ERA in 46.1 innings of work this season spread across seven starts. Civale went seven innings in his last outing against the Reds, allowing only one run on five hits.
Seattle is going with right-hander Chris Flexen to slow down the red-hot Indians. Flexen is 3-1 in 33.1 innings of work spread across six starts. Flexen was roughed up in his last outing, allowing 10 hits and four runs against the Rangers.
The Mariners ran into a great starting pitching performance from Zach Plesac on Thursday night, but rallied to make the game interesting late and should be able to take some of that momentum into Game Two of the series. Seattle has a ton of value as a short home underdog after the Indians played an emotionally draining game last night trying to keep the no-hitter intact.
*Odds Courtesy of MyBookie Sportsbook