Point Spread: 1.50 | -170.00 St. Louis (Away)
Two teams jockeying for positioning go head-to-head here on Thursday night in this NL matchup, but after losing three straight, I like the Cardinals to dig deep here and bounce back finally. That includes two straight losses to open this series, falling 5-0 and 1-0. Note that St. Louis is 7-3 in its last ten in trying to avenge back-to-back losses against an opponent. After winning five straight, I think the Padres finally have a letdown here. Joe Musgrove gets the call for the Padres and he's 10-7 with a 3.16 ERA. He'll be going up against the Cards' Jack Flaherty, who is just 0-1 with a 5.09 ERA. Note that St. Louis slugger Albert Pujols, who is stuck on 698 home runs, is 3 for 9 with a homer off Musgrove (Joe's just 2-7 with a 5.53 ERA in ten lifetime starts vs. the Cards.) Flaherty is 1-0 with a 1.10 ERA in 16 1/3 career frames vs. the Friars. This is his fourth start of the season and I expect him to be sharp. While an outright win isn't out of the question, I'm going to lay the price for the extra 1.5 runs of insurance; the play is St. Louis on the runline option!