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The Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds will meet for the second time this season in a four-game series in PNC Park. Ben Rajavuori breaks down the game.

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Cincinnati Reds Best Bet: Can JT Brubaker Get Off to a Good Start at Home?

The Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds will meet for the second time this season in a four-game series in PNC Park. The Reds took two of three in the last series in their home park to help snap their losing streak. The Pirates, meanwhile, took care of business at home against the Dodgers by taking two of three in the series earlier this week. Are the Reds back on track, or are the Pirates too much for them at home? Here are our picks, predictions, and odds for Thursday’s game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds.

Pirates vs. Reds Start Time, Where to Watch. and Odds

  • Date: May 12, 2022
  • Game Time: 6:35 pm ET
  • Where to Watch: ATTP, BSOH

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Pirates vs. Reds Line Movement

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Cincinnati Reds Prediction

The Pirates look much better this season than last. The Pirates are 13-11 this season against teams that aren't the Brewers. They are also off a fresh series win against the Dodgers in which they scored five runs in two of those games. The Pirate's common theme has been hitting and pitching better at home. They are batting .249 at home with a .321 OBP compared to a .226 batting average and .293 OBP on the road. This was evident in the Dodgers series, and the lineup appears to be clicking at the moment.

Taking the mound for the Pirates will be JT Brubaker. Brubaker has struggled to start the year, but he did just go five innings with only two earned runs last week against the Reds. That start was also on the road, and he has historically pitched much better at home than on the road. Last season, he had a 3.79 ERA at home over 11 starts compared to a 6.78 road ERA over 13 starts. He was 1-8 on the road compared to 4-5 at home. Brubaker has had to face some tough teams, most of them on the road, too, so a home start against a struggling Reds team is a perfect spot for Brubaker to dial in.

The Reds are flat-out terrible. Some of that can be excused by their injuries, but this team is 2-15 on the road, by far the worst in the MLB. Last week, the Reds did take two of three against the Pirates, but that was at home, and the Reds have proven to be a different team on the road this year. They are batting .250 with a .760 OPS at home compared to batting .190 with a .542 OPS on the road.

Starting for the Reds today will be Connor Overton. Overton has a 2.53 ERA on the season but has had just two starts, one of them being against the Pirates. He went 5.1 innings in that start with two runs allowed but now has to pitch on the road, which has been a problem for him in the past. Overton pitched out of the bullpen most of last year, but his home/away split was staggering. He had a 9.0 ERA on the road compared to a 0 ERA at home. Overton also showed struggles against lefties. Lefties hit 3.08 off Overton with a 1.033 OPS compared to a .200 average and .435 OPS versus righties. The Pirates lineup has multiple talented lefty bats, including Ben Gamel, Daniel Vogelbach, Yoshi Tsutsugo, and Bryan Reynolds (switch-hitter).

Today seems like a perfect time for Brubaker to get a quality start. He's much more comfortable pitching at home and hasn't had many starts against "bad" teams this year. The Reds are also the worst team in the league covering the F5 line. The Reds are 3-13-1 this year on the F5 line. Overton is also a much less comfortable pitcher on the road and has to face a team he just pitched against that is a coming-off-a-series win against the Dodgers. That series win should give the Pirates confidence, and their lefty-heavy lineup should dominate a pitcher that has struggled against lefties. Take the Pirates to be leading after five innings tonight.

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Cincinnati Reds Best Bet

Pick: Pirates F5 ML @ -130 (Bet $130 to win $100)

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Article Author


Ben Rajavuori is a handicapper out of Minneapolis, MN. He has been creating sports content for almost four years now and is an expert in all things NFL, MLB, NBA, UFC, and NCAAB. Ben thrives on diving deep into statistics to find the best angle on every bet. You can follow him on Twitter @WeBeatTheSpread.


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