The reigning NL Central champion St. Louis Cardinals are beginning the 2020 regular season with a series at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates. While St. Louis is expected to be a playoff contender again this season, and the Pittsburgh Pirates is expected to be one of the worst teams in baseball.
The Cardinals were able to get off on the right foot Friday night, topping the Pirates in the season opener, 5-4. The 2020 regular season will feature several uncertainties, which could throw a huge wrinkle in betting. St. Louis is the better team in this matchup, but, as the opener showed, that doesn’t always mean they will win easily.
St. Louis Cardinals is a -165-betting favorite over the Pittsburgh Pirates and here is a quick breakdown of what to expect in Game No. 2 of 2020.
The Pittsburgh Pirates saw their best player, Starling Marte, leave this offseason, and that leaves a huge hole in their everyday lineup. Pittsburgh will struggle on offense in 2020, and that could be a huge issue against Saturday’s Cardinals pitcher, Adam Wainwright.
Trevor Williams will be making the start for Pittsburgh in this game, and the promising youngster will look to improve on what has been a quality start to his career. Williams can dominate opponents when he is on his game, but he will be facing a tough challenge against the Cardinals in this game.
Wainwright is entering his 15th season with the Cardinals, and he is still effective enough to be given the ball on the second day of the season. Wainwright won’t overpower opponents, but he has a nice mix of pitches to keep opponents off-balance.
St. Louis has a lot of young talent in its everyday lineup, including Paul DeJong, who had a two-run homer in the opener, and it will be interesting to see how that plays out this season. The Cardinals won’t overpower many opponents, but this offense should be good enough on most nights.
Even though Wainwright is one of the oldest pitchers in baseball, he continues to be effective for the St. Louis Cardinals. St. Louis was the NL Central champion a season ago, and they have a team that is capable of winning the division again this season.
Both teams will struggle to score this season, but that type of game plays into the strengths of the Cardinals and they will find just enough offense to win game two of the series.