The Cincinnati Reds will host the Arizona Diamondbacks as the NL foes open a three game series Friday night from the Great American Ball Park. The Diamondbacks will give the starting nod to 33-year old right-hander Clay Buchholz, and the Reds will counter with 28-year old right-hander Anthony DeSclafani. The Diamondbacks won two of three against the Reds in the lone series this season.
Buchholz Aims for Fifth Consecutive Victory
Clay Buchholz will make his 11th start of the year, hunting for his fifth consecutive victory. Buchholz came through with another solid outing last time out, allowing two runs in six innings against the Giants, leading to his fifth straight win to boost his record to 5-1. The veteran right-hander has been sharp in all but one start this season, and he features a stifling 2.68 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP in 57 innings pitched. Buchholz allowed four runs in five innings in his only career meeting against the Reds. He has racked up 20 strikeouts in his last 18.1 innings.
Ketel Marte is quietly having a career-year at the plate, posting a .257 average with 10 home runs and 45 RBI’s. The 24-year old shortstop has only committed four errors this season. Marte is 3 for 10 with two RBI’s against the Reds this season, and he owns a sizzling .391 average this month. The Diamondbacks are currently averaging 4.49 runs per game, ranking them 16th in the Major Leagues. The Arizona pitching continues to excel, sporting a 3.60 team ERA, good for fourth in the Majors.
DeSclafani Returns to Win Columns in Gem vs. Nats
Anthony DeSclafani will get the nod for the 12th time of the season, aiming for his second straight victory. DeSclafani posted one of his best efforts of the season in his latest start, holding the Nationals to only one run in seven innings, leading to a 7-1 win. The fourth-year right-hander had a rough month of July, and he stands at 5-3 with a weak 4.98 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP in 59.2 innings logged on the season. He has conceded nine runs to go with a 1-1 record in 20 career head-to-head innings against the Diamondbacks.
Joey Votto had an effective series against the Diamondbacks earlier this season, recording 6 hits in 14 at bats. The 34-year old first baseman is having an inconsistent season, currently hitting .289 with nine home runs and 53 RBI’s. Votto is in a slump right now, driving in only one run in his last nine games. The Reds are scoring an average of 4.57 runs per game, ranking them 12th in the Majors. The Cincinnati pitching staff owns weak 4.72 team ERA, positioning them 24th in the Major Leagues.
The Cincinnati Reds are:
- 1-4 in their last 5 games overall.
- 0-6 in their last 6 games against a right-handed starter.
- 0-5 in DeSclafani’s last 5 starts following a Quality Start in his previous outing.
The Arizona Diamondbacks are:
- 4-0 in Buchholz’ last 4 starts.
- 10-1 in their last 11 road games against a team with a losing record.
- 8-3 in their last 11 games in Cincinnati.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I am siding with the Diamondbacks in this matchup. Clay Buchholz continues to succeed, allowing only a combined six runs over his last 18.1 innings spread across three starts. Furthermore, DeSclafani has not been pitching deep into the game. He has only pitched more than 4.1 innings in a start in one out of his last four starts, and the Reds own a mediocre bullpen. The Reds have also cooled off at the plate, scoring four or fewer runs in eight out of their last ten games.
Prediction: Arizona Diamondbacks -129
Full-Game Total Pick
Clay Buccholz has been outstanding on the road this season, and both teams have not been scoring many runs. Buchholz features a dazzling 2.10 ERA in his six road starts on the season, and the under is 4-0 in Arizona’s last four games overall. Arizona has only scored a combined 13 runs in their last four games, and the Reds have also slowed down offensively, plus the under is 4-1 in the D-Backs’ last five games against a right-handed starter.
Prediction: Under 9.5
Full-Game Prop Bet
I expect the D-Backs pitching staff to silence the Reds. Clay Buchholz owns a 2.68 ERA on the season, and Arizona’s bullpen ranks fourth in the Majors with a 3.62 ERA. The Reds have also scored four or fewer runs in eight out of their last ten games, plus they have a weak .680 OPS in August.
Prediction: Reds Team Total Under 4.5
First Five Innings Side Pick
Anthony DeSclafani owns a terrible 5.65 ERA at home this season. He also has a 4.91 ERA in the 2nd inning, followed by a 5.73 ERA in the third inning this season, so I anticipate early runs from Arizona. Also, Clay Buchholz features a stellar 2.10 ERA the first time through the opponents batting order.
Prediction: Arizona Diamondbacks -125
First Five Innings Total Bet
The over on the five inning total is a solid option. DeSclafani owns a 6.97 ERA in the fourth inning this season, and the Diamondbacks are swinging the bats well, hitting a stellar .288 as a team in August. In addition, Clay Buchholz possesses a poor 5.40 ERA with a .282 opponent batting average in the fourth inning this season.
Prediction: Over 5
First Five Innings Prop Prediction
I am taking the Diamondbacks to score first in this contest. Arizona’s best inning this season has come in the opening frame. They have belted 22 home runs along with 87 RBI’s in the first inning, which is by far their most productive inning.
Prediction: Arizona to Score First -180