The Pittsburgh Pirates won the first game of today's double-header against the Cincinnati Reds 6-1 and hope for a third straight victory in Game 2 tonight.
23-year-old righty Luis Ortiz makes his MLB debut for the Pirates, hoping to build off an impressive stretch in the minors in which he allowed two earned runs or fewer in five of his last six starts.
Cincy turns to Fernando Cruz trying to snap a four-game losing streak, though it'll be a bullpen day for the Reds.
Let's take a look at the consensus odds before picking a winner in this Pirates vs Reds Game 2 matchup:
Pirates vs Reds Game 2 Odds, Run Line and Total
- Pirates +1.5 (-176)
- Reds -1.5 (+160)
- Pirates: +116
- Reds: -136
- 9.5 (Over -103, Under -117)
Pirates vs Reds Game 2 Prediction and Pick
I'm a bit surprised the Pirates are underdogs here, but I'm happy to take the value on Pittsburgh to sweep the double-header.
The Reds have one of MLB's worst bullpens, ranking third-to-last in ERA. That alone gives the Pirates an edge, but there's other factors giving Pittsburgh value as well.
Luis Ortiz looked stellar over the last several weeks in the minors, striking out at least eight batters in three of his last four starts with a 2.61 ERA over his previous six. I expect him to find success against a Reds team that's just 2-5 in its last seven games as a home favorite.
Pittsburgh is 4-2 in its last six contests as a road underdog, including two straight wins over Cincinnati.
Back the Pirates to notch a third straight win over the Reds as Ortiz performs well and Cincy's bullpen falters once again.
Pick: Pirates ML (+116)
Follow all of Joe Summers' betting picks here.