Finding Johnny Cueto as a short favorite is hard to come by. Finding him as a short favorite against a rookie, on the Mets no less, is more difficult to find than the Chicago Cubs winning a World Series. Okay, I shouldn’t go that far, but this is usually an instance when you find him at a much higher price. It looks like there is value to be had on Cueto, but the line has be scratching my head a bit. The Mets’ offense is absolutely lifeless and on paper it looks like the Reds should win this game. However, in baseball, it isn’t so easy picking games just based on that. Teams that shouldn’t win end up winning games all the time of course, and this is looking like one of those games where the Reds probably should win it, but if the Mets steal one it wouldn’t come as a big shocker either. The Mets have a pitcher making an appearance today who figures to be in their long-term plan. You may have never heard of him if you don’t follow baseball, but Noah Syndergaard should be on your list of pitchers to pay attention to in the coming years.
Yesterday’s pick in the White Sox/Tigers game was no fun at all, let’s just put it that way. For the second straight day a loss in extras doomed us, as yet again there were opportunities to end the game late, but all we could be afforded was a tie which brought it to extra innings once again. Joba Chamberlain could have ended the inning with the bases loaded and 2 outs, but he got hit for a triple, clearing the bases and bringing the score to 8-5 White Sox. To add insult to injury, the Tigers tacked on a couple in the bottom of the 11th and had a chance to tie it up. Unlike the White Sox, the Tigers were unable to find a way to come up in a clutch situation and ultimately lost by a run. I said it yesterday and I’ll say it again, I have been unable to find a way to win the close games like that this season, generally speaking. Hopefully the beginning of the weekend bodes well for us on Friday.
Cincinnati Reds vs. N.Y. Mets
Johnny Cueto (4-4, 2.98 ERA) vs. Noah Syndergaard (2-4, 4.03 ERA)
The numbers don’t exactly speak to Syndergaard too much. Like I said, he has a few learning experiences, shall we say, in a couple of his starts. But a couple of those bad starts have skewed his ERA considerably. You’re going to find more good outings from him than not. Further, a 2-4 record is certainly a reflection of how anemic the Mets’ offense truly is. Notably, the offensive unit has been non-existent lately. They had a great run at the start of the season, but have come back to where we predicted they would be. Variance essentially caught up to the Mets. They beat the Brewers yesterday, 2-0, which ended a seven game losing skid for the Mets. But even in that win, there was no offense to be had there. In their last ten games the Mets have averaged 1.8 runs per game, yikes. Only twice were they able to score more than 3 runs.
Cueto is looking for a nice payday soon from a suitor. Perhaps he gets sent packing to a new team at the trade deadline? That scenario definitely wouldn’t surprise me. The Reds need to find out what they are going to do with him, because waiting for his contract to expire is going to equal the Reds getting nothing in return. I think the Reds know it that he isn’t going to be with them much longer either. If he really wants a big fat new contract somewhere, Cueto is going to have to show he can dominate this misfit of an offense, the Mets. The line is trying to say here that Syndergaard is going to have a good start against the Reds, because the price doesn’t make much sense otherwise. I believe we see a low scoring affair, with runs coming at a premium for both teams. I like the UNDER 6.5, in a game that will probably come down to a 3-2 or 4-2 final.
PICK: UNDER 6.5 RUNS (-105)