The National League Central division wasn’t supposed to be in play this year. But with the Chicago Cubs experiencing a World Series hangover, it’s the Milwaukee Brewers who sit atop the Central standings at 33-31, 8.53 betting units in the black. According to the sports book at Bovada the Brew Crew visit the St. Louis Cardinals (29-32, –8.17 units) this Thursday in the finale of a four-game series, beginning at 7:15 PM ET.
Tuesday’s double-header could mess up the pitching rotations, but in theory, it will be Junior Guerra (5.36 FIP) taking the mound for Milwaukee, and Michael Wacha (3.98 FIP) responding for St. Louis. Guerra has been very fortunate this year, posting a .219 BABIP with 91.6% of base runners left stranded, but the Brewers are still just 1-4 in his five starts for a loss of 2.31 units. The Cards are 4-7 in Wacha’s 11 starts, down 4.52 units after some shaky bullpen support early in the year and some uncharacteristically poor pitching from Wacha of late.
St. Louis also has to be concerned about catcher Yadier Molina (.694 OPS). He’s missed the past three games with a stiff lower back, although Monday’s off-day might be enough to get Molina ready for this series.