Baseball fans in Ohio will be excited to see their Reds and Indians go head to head in a three game Interleague series beginning with the opener Friday at Cleveland's Progressive Field;first pitch set for 7:05 pm ET. Sportsbooks list this series as a MLB Odds pick with a -115 betting price.
For Friday's opener, the Indians look to get a leg up on the series but will be doing it with a rookie, right-hander Alex White, The Reds, looking for a win, give the ball to south-paw Travis Wood. With White and Wood the starters, oddsmakers list the Indians as moneyline favorites but very close at -106 while Reds backers are giving -104. This line is so close it's virtually a PICK. Over/Under totals bettors are getting a posted line of 8 1/2-runs with an price of -110 either way.
At 26-15, the Indians have the best record in MLB and lead the AL Central Division by 5-games over the second place Detroit Tigers. The Reds (25-19) are in a battle with Saint Louis in the NL Central, now trailing the Cardinals by half a game and in second place.
The Reds are playing good ball recently going 11-4 of their last 15 games, including a home sweep of the rival Cardinals last weekend. The Indians are torrid right now going 15-2 in their last 17 games.
The Reds have enjoyed a distinct advantage in cross-state interleague play against the Indians by winning four of their last five games as visitors and going 6-2 against the Indians overall. There is no doubt, Cleveland will be highly motivated to reverse this trend.
If there is any advantage in starting a rookie tonight, it's that nobody's seen him. That is unless the Reds had their scouts looking at him up in Triple-A at Columbus but that's doubtful. White was called up from Columbus to replace starter Carlos Carrasco who went on the disabled list April 28. In that time White is 1-0 in two starts with a 3.75 ERA.
Wood had a good outing on Sunday beating the Cardinals, holding them to two runs over six innings on seven hits while walking one and striking out three. With the win, Wood moved to 3-3 on the year with a 5.01 ERA.
Today's game is an interesting matchup between hot clubs who will be looking for in-state bragging rights. Making MLB Predictions is challenging because neither club is starting their best pitcher. Unless one of these guys, White and Wood, have stellar day's, runs will be scored. I look for an exciting offensive game producing OVER 8 1/2-runs.