Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#969 Detroit Tigers vs.
#970 Tampa Bay Rays
Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 6:40pm EDT
Written by Blake V.

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Detroit and Tampa Bay will both be looking for continued good form when they face off in the second game of their three-game series on Tuesday night. The Tigers had won three straight games coming into this series, while Tampa Bay had won three of its last four. This story was published prior to Monday night’s series-opener.

Tigers finally rack up several wins

Detroit went through a terrible stretch from the end of April to the middle of May, losing 16 out of 19 games. The Tigers responded with their first series win since the middle of April—and just their second series win overall this season—with a sweep against Baltimore over the weekend. They held the Orioles to just three total runs, allowing themselves to win with an average of just three runs per game of their own. Detroit is now heading on the road for a nine-game homestand that begins with Monday night’s game in Tampa Bay. The Tigers have been struggling at the plate all year, ranked No. 25 in the MLB in team batting average (.225).

Veteran first baseman Miguel Cabrera leads the way with 33 hits and a .297 average. Left fielder Austin Meadows has 27 hits, but the rest of the team is having trouble recording hits consistently. They will be facing a Tampa Bay pitching staff that is No. 12 in team ERA (3.63). Right-handed pitcher Beau Brieske is set to start for Detroit on Tuesday night. He allowed two earned runs across six innings in a quality start against Oakland his last time out. Brieske has two losses and two no-decisions through his first four starts in the big leagues, but he has thrown at least five innings in each appearance and has a respectable 3.86 ERA.

Rays pitching continues to dominate

Tampa Bay has put together a strong start to the month of May, winning nine of its last 13 games. The Rays took two out of three against Toronto over the weekend, including a 3-0 win on Sunday to close out the series. They are amid a six-game homestand that concludes on Wednesday. Tampa Bay is trying to keep pace with the red-hot Yankees at the top of the American League East, as New York is off to a 25-9 start. The Rays are still just 4.5 games back though, so they will be looking to take advantage of upcoming games against Detroit and Baltimore.

They have not been as good at the plate, ranked No. 18 in team batting average (.234). Shortstop Wander Franco leads the team with a .285 average, recording 39 hits. Right fielder Manuel Margot has 32 hits, while right fielder Randy Arozarena has 30 base knocks. They are facing a Detroit pitching staff that is seventh in the MLB with a team ERA of 3.42. Left-handed pitcher Shane McClanahan is going to start for Tampa Bay on Tuesday. He was outstanding in his last start, throwing seven scoreless innings against the Angels, striking out 11 batters. McClanahan brings a 2.52 ERA through 39.1 innings into this start.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

Insiders Status:

Rating:

This is an extremely large price to offer Detroit in a game that should not have many runs scored. There are a pair of strong starting arms going for both teams, which means one or two runs could be the difference in this game. I have no interest in backing a heavy favorite in a game that will not feature much offensive production. The Rays have not been a good offensive team as it is, ranked in the bottom half of the MLB. They rely on strong pitching, but Brieske’s strong start to his career should counteract Tampa Bay’s primary advantage. I do not mind taking a stab at the Detroit moneyline, but I really like the Tigers at +1.5 on the run-line.

Prediction: Detroit +1.5

Full-Game Total Pick

Insiders Status:

Rating:

This is going to be the lowest MLB total of the day, but I still like the under. Detroit has been atrocious at the plate this season, so it will be difficult for them to solve their issues against one of the top pitching staffs in baseball. McClanahan is off to an excellent start this season, throwing seven scoreless innings against a strong Angels lineup his last time out. Meanwhile, Brieske has not been intimidated through his first four starts in the big leagues. He has an advantage against a Tampa Bay lineup that has never faced him. I am keen on the under in a game between these two below-average offenses.

Prediction: Under 7
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Written By Blake Von Hagen , "Blake V."

Blake is a lifelong sports fan and hoops junkie. Prior to joining our team at Winners & Whiners and StatSalt, Blake worked for several newspapers and websites. He enjoys combining his beat writing expertise with the knack for finding the winning edge in a matchup. Blake is also an avid sports being expert and you would not be disappointed in following him on a daily basis. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. 
Follow on Twitter @Blake_Vonhagen