The Cleveland Indians are back on the diamond after an 8-4 win over the New York Yankees. That prevented getting swept for their third straight loss. It also would have made for the fifth loss in their last six games, so it was a nice confidence booster for the team. They were in danger of entering this week with little confidence in the tank.
The Tribe got help from the Chicago White Sox in Minnesota last night, as they upset the Twins by a score of 6-4. With the Twins having an opportunity to go up 2.5 games in the AL Central, they faltered and their lead remains at 2 games.
The Twins and Indians will both be going to the postseason if the standings hold, though. The Indians would just have a more difficult route, having to play in the Wild Card Game against the Rays. Cleveland would be hosting that one at Progressive Field, so the odds would lean in favor of the Indians.
Play well down the stretch and they won’t have to worry about a do-or-die scenario, though. There is more than enough time to make up two games, and two of their next three series are against losing ball clubs. Following this three-game series against the Mets at Citi Field, the Indians will host the Royals and then head off to Detroit for three games against the Tigers.
The Indians have been able to get away with suffering two key losses to their rotation. Corey Kluber recently had a setback in a rehab start, as he had to exit with abdominal tightness. Kluber broke his arm on a line drive earlier in the season, so they are not related.
It just hasn’t been his season. However, the Indians responded by giving Shane Bieber more of a role in the starting rotation. It’s worked out extremely well, with Bieber going to the All-Star Game and winning MVP honors. Bieber gets the nod against Steven Matz of the Mets at Citi Field tonight. Head below for our free Indians vs. Mets pick.
Cleveland Indians vs. N.Y. Mets Pick:
Betting odds provided by bovada.lv
The Mets were winners in two of three games in their last series against the Royals. That’s a series that the Mets cannot afford to lose at this point. They weren’t able to get a sweep, but responded nicely after losing the opener. The Mets are 3-1 in their previous four games and 18-5 in their last 23 games.
That run has brought them within two games of a wildcard in the National League. They looked completely out of it with a six-game deficit at the time of the Marcus Stroman trade. Everyone has helped out in the rotation, and while Matz hasn’t been the Mets’ best option, he’s been a steady arm. His numbers have been superb at home, with a 2.14 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in 54.2 innings of work. Matz hasn’t allowed more than 2 runs at home in any start, which goes across eleven outings.
His counterpart tonight, Shane Bieber, has been playing terrific baseball over the last month. Bieber hasn’t allowed more than 2 runs in an outing since July 19th against the Royals of all teams. Bieber is only in his second season, so the future looks pretty bright for him. This could be a tricky spot for Bieber against a Mets team who have been on fire at home.
The Mets are 10-1 in their previous eleven outings at home. They’ve also gone 7-3 over the Indians in their last ten meetings, and are 7-1 in their last eight interleague games. The Indians seem to be a little too overvalued here. It should be a tight game regardless, with a final score of 5-4 or 4-3. I will take the Mets on the runline to win or at least keep it within a run.