The Cleveland Indians are in Chicago looking for the sweep in game four of a four game series with the White Sox. With a win tonight, the Indians will break their franchise record for most consecutive wins, with fifteen. The Indians took game one 5-3, behind homers from Jose Ramirez and Carlos Santana and a solid start from Trevor Bauer who went 6.1 innings, giving up just two earned runs in the win. Game two featured more Jose Ramirez, who hit two more homer runs in a 9-4 blow out win. In game three, Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco came up just short of a complete game shutout. Carrasco gave up a run in the ninth but finished out the complete game, giving up just three hits, and one earned run, in yet another Indians win. It has been a dominant stretch of games for the Indians.
Today’s MLB Pick:
Cleveland Indians (83-56) at Chicago White Sox (54-84)
Tonight, the Indians will send their ace to the mound, Corey Kluber, (14-4 2.56 ERA) looking to make history. The White Sox will counter with Carlos Rodon (2-5 4.15 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 5:10 PM PST form Guaranteed Rate Park in Chicago, Illinois.
The Cleveland Indians came into this season as one of the favorites in the American League. They came oh so close to winning the World Series last year, after losing in a dramatic game seven to the Chicago Cubs. In the offseason, they went out and picked up slugger Edwin Encarnacion and looked poised to run away with the Central Division title. At the All-Star break that just wasn’t the case. They were in a surprising three-way battle with the upstart Minnesota Twins and the Kansas City Royals.
Baseball “experts” were scratching their heads and wondering why the Indians weren’t running away with the division. Well, I guess at some point they woke up and realized that they were a much better team than their results were showing and decided to get their act together. Entering play today they have the division all but locked up with an eleven game lead over the Minnesota Twins and are now about to catch the Astros for the best record in the American League. Especially with the Dodgers recent struggles, you can make a case that the Indians are baseballs best team so far in the second half of the season. Their starter tonight, Corey Kluber is zeroing in on another Cy Young award this year.
Kluber has been lights out this season. He just won the American League pitcher of the month for August with a 5-1 record and 1.96 ERA. Couple that with Chris Sale’s recent struggles and Corey Kluber is poised to win his second American League Cy Young award as he leads his team to the post season. In this matchup, tonight against a young and very depleted White Sox team it almost doesn’t seem fair. This series hasn’t been overly competitive anyway, and now the Sox have to face Kluber? Tough day for White Sox fans and if you are a little squeamish you may want to look away because today this is going to be a beating.
The White Sox Carlos Rodon hasn’t been terrible after coming off the 60-day DL in June. His 4.15 ERA is more than respectable, and he has been even better over the last month or so as has gone 1-1 with an ERA in the low threes. But in this matchup tonight against a very motivated Cleveland team looking to make history, I can’t imagine Rodon is up to the challenge.
I usually talk a little bit about both teams when I am breaking down a game. But tonight’s game is all about the Cleveland Indians and their quest for history. They have Kluber on the mound at the top of his game and are playing a bad team in the Chicago White Sox. All signs point to the Indians coming through and winning their 15th straight. I expect Kluber to be dominant, possibly even go eight innings or more and completely shut down this White Sox team. I see Rodon doing his best to stay competitive, but he is just outmatched in this one and eventually that Cleveland offense is going to get to him.
I like the Indians today, a lot. They are an elite team with their best starter on the mound and are looking to make history. And the run line is offering a decent price at just -150. You are getting a dollar and five cent discount on the run line tonight as the money line is -255. That is just too attractive to pass up in this one. Look for Kluber to shut them down and the Indians to coast to their 15th straight win tonight in Chicago. Give me the Indians o the run line at -150.
PICK: Indians -1.5 runs at -150