White Sox vs. Pirates MLB Pick – September 9, 2020

Major League Baseball Logo on Grey Concrete Background

We have a 12-game MLB schedule going down Wednesday, but I have my eye on one particular game that should net us some profits, but of course, stay tuned for more!

Also, make sure to follow me on Twitter @BKemp17 to ensure you get all my daily MLB picks as it’s been a profitable season to this point!

Season Record: 16-9

Units: +5.84

Now let’s check out this free MLB pick featuring the White Sox vs. Pirates from PNC Park in Pittsburgh!

White Sox vs. Pirates Betting Odds

  • White Sox (-155)
  • Pirates (+143)
  • White Sox -1.5 (-105)
  • Pirates +1.5 (-115)
  • Over 9 (-104)
  • Under 9 (-116)

White Sox vs. Pirates MLB Pick Breakdown

Starting Pitching

White Sox

The White Sox will send young right-hander Dane Dunning to the hill tonight for the fourth start of his young career while the right-hander has been everything the team has wanted since making his debut on August 19 against the Tigers.

Dunning will enter this one sporting a tidy 3.86 ERA, but also some strong peripherals in the form of a 2.80 FIP, 3.14 xFIP, a monster 11.57 K/9 and a 3.75 SIERA that more or less supports the quality work most of the numbers show to this point.

The strikeouts are nothing new after Dunning posted some big-time strikeouts numbers throughout his minor-league career, though he’ll look to reel in the walks some with a 3.86 BB/9 on the season as well.

Nonetheless, he’s kept the ball in the yard at a 0.64 HR/9 clip so far on the heels of a 2018 season in which he did not allow a single home run across 62 innings at the Double-A level. Tommy John surgery cost Dunning the entirety of the 2019 season.

One area the White Sox will look for improvement is his ability to get deeper into games as he’s maxed out at five innings in his three starts, pitching 4.2 and 4.1 innings in his other two.

Nonetheless, the results have been stellar to this point for the 25-year-old righty.

Pirates

The Pirates are also sending a young, inexperienced right-hander to the mound for this one as JT Brubaker makes his sixth start of the season and eighth appearance overall.

Like Dunning, the results have been of quality value. Brubaker carries a 3.96 ERA/3.48 FIP into action while he too has been able to find his strikeout stuff with a 9.72 K/9 on the season. He’s also endured some command issues with a 3.96 BB/9 on the season and he’s kept the ball in the park at a reasonable 0.72 HR/9 clip to this point.

Brubaker notched his first career win his last time out when he hurled five innings of one-run ball with five strikeouts over a more-than-capable Chicago Cubs offense. It was his third consecutive outing of allowing two earned runs or fewer while he’s punched out opposing hitters at a 10.29 K/9 clip over that span.

The 26-year-old also remains on the prowl for his first career quality start as he too has maxed out at five innings across his five starts this season, reach that mark in each of his last two.

Offense

White Sox

There’s little doubt as to who the offensive advantage lies with here as the White Sox have been one of baseball’s better offenses this season after an offseason riddled with offensive additions along with the promotion and development of top prospects such as Luis Robert and Eloy Jimenez.

On the whole, the White Sox rank fifth with a .344 wOBA on the season while they’ve flexed their muscle all the way to a team .203 ISO, good for fourth league wide.

That said, this is a team that’s been far better against left-handed pitching, perhaps allowing Brubaker an avenue to prevent some runs in this one.

While they’re not terrible against righties, the White Sox are baseball’s best offense against lefties. They slip to 13th with a .328 wOBA on the season against righties and their .181 ISO off of righties is in a share of 13th alongside the Baltimore Orioles.

After averaging 7.75 runs per game in a four-game sweep of the Royals, the White Sox offense was somewhat quieted in a 5-4 loss last night in Pittsburgh.

Pirates

It’s a truncated season, but it likely already feels long for Pirates fans as this offense has surely put many to sleep to this point in the season.

Entering this one tonight, the Pirates are dead last in several offensive categories versus right-handed pitching including wOBA (.265), ISO (.122), OPS (.607) and OBP (.272). If they aren’t at the bottom in other areas, they’re close as their walk rates and strikeout rates leave plenty to be desired, as well.

It’s not much of a surprise. The team dealt away perhaps its top offensive player in Starling Marte this past offseason and the likes of Josh Bell and Gregory Polanco – two of the team’s most proven bats – both sport wOBA south of .270 against right-handed pitching this season.

One recent bright spot has been the early returns of top prospect Ke’Bryan Hayes who is hitting .381 with a home run and a .479 wOBA through his first six career MLB games.

Bullpen

White Sox

One of the more well-rounded teams in baseball, the White Sox have received yeoman’s work from their bullpen as well.

The White Sox bullpen ranks 10th with a 4.11 ERA, but their 3.84 FIP ranks seventh and their 3.88 xFIP checks in at second, behind only the Brewers and their 3.82 mark.

Alex Colome has been on lockdown mode as the team’s closer with a 1.15 ERA and nine saves on the season while Evan Marshall, Matt Foster, Ross Detwiler, and Codi Heuer all sport ERA figures south of 2.85 while all throwing at least 14.2 innings this season.

Top to bottom, the White sox sport one of baseball’s best bullpens, having locked down many wins the offense and starting pitching have provided to this point.

Pirates

The best department of the 2020 Pittsburgh Pirates has been their bullpen – a group that’s put forth solid work to this point.

The Pirates sit 17th with a 4.54 bullpen ERA and 13th with a 4.30 FIP from that group. The main issue for the group has been walks with a 4.59 BB/9 on the season, but they have mitigated that to a point with a nice 9.81 K/9 while one would believe their low 66.6% strand rate would stand to improve moving forward.

The team has been without closer Keone Kela for all but two innings this season while names such as Chris Stratton, Richard Rodriguez, Geoff Hartlieb and Sam Howard have been doing much of the productive, heavy-lifting this season.

White Sox vs. Pirates MLB Pick

While we have a couple of young, inexperienced right-handers going in this one, I like the chances of both doing nice work in this one.

Dunning couldn’t ask for a better matchup in this one while Brubaker is coming off an excellent start and faces a White Sox offense that hasn’t been at its best against right-handing pitching this season.

Even if Dunning can’t get over the five-inning mark in this one, he’s backed by a deep bullpen that, as noted, has done excellent work this season.

On the other wide, the Pirates’ bullpen has been solid this season and actually rank fifth with a 2.45 ERA to go along with a 3.26 FIP/3.60 xFIP over the last week. Their 0.6 fWAR over that span is tied for third.

To me, this is a recipe for an under. I don’t see the Pirates generating much, if anything offensively in this one and while the White Sox are also a threat, they’re running into a hot bullpen and a starter that’s been nothing but solid this season.

Add it up and you can sign me up for the under nine tonight from Pittsburgh.

The Bet
UNDER 9
-116
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Brenton Kemp / Author

Brenton is a lifelong sports fan who resides in Ontario, Canada. Brenton is a fan of most all sports but specializes in hockey, baseball, football, basketball, and golf. He’s a fierce researcher with a strong appetite to deliver accurate and relevant facts that in turn have led to past success with picks and DFS advice across the board. Brenton’s biggest goal is to deliver readers with the picks and advice that can build their bankroll. He takes great pride in his success and loves nothing more than to share that success for the benefit of everyone involved.