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August 7, 2017

There is one pick today.

Take St. Louis Cardinals (-125) on the ML against Kansas City Royals risking 3.75% to win 3%.
(Martinez and Kennedy must start for wager to have action)

Two teams vying for a potential playoff spot open a series tonight as the St. Louis Cardinals travel to Kauffman Stadium to take on the Kansas City Royals. While this is an important interleague series for both teams, we believe the home team could be at somewhat of a disadvantage in Game 1 tonight.

Both teams have been playing well as of late, but the Kansas City Royals could come into this Game 1 matchup a bit fatigued tonight. Yesterday the Royals took on the Mariners in a double-header which can be taxing on a team, especially when it comes to the bullpen. The day after a DH, teams typically hope to get a long, sustained outing from their starting pitcher, however, we are not sure Kennedy will can provide that tonight. This is a horrible matchup for Ian Kennedy, who is 0-4 with a 4.98 ERA at home this year and just 5-5 with a 5.18 ERA in interleague play in his career. He has also struggled mightily against St. Louis in his career going just 3-5 with an inflated 7.20 ERA in eight career starts against the Cards. St. Louis has shown an ability to get to Kennedy on multiple occasions in the past and without the benefit of a fresh bullpen to support him, Ned Yost may have no choice to leave him in there well past the time he should be pulled.

While Kennedy has struggled, Cardinals pitcher Carlos Martinez has put up respectable numbers this season, despite his less than impressive overall record indicates. On the season Martinez owns a respectable 3.56 ERA through 22 starts and a 3.95 ERA in 11 starts on the highway. Lack of run support has been a big issue when Martinez has taken the mound this season, but we expect that to change tonight taking on Kennedy. Martinez has made two career appearances against the Royals and has been spectacular, having to yet concede a single earned run in either of those outings.

The Cardinals are just 3 games behind the division leading Chicago Cubs, but 8 games behind in the Wildcard. In all likelihood, St Louis' only chance to make the playoffs is to win the division and to do that, they must start stringing wins together and playing better on the road. They should have the advantage tonight on the mound and the fact that KC may still be a bit fatigued from yesterday's DH should be the advantage that St. Louis needs to steal a victory in the series opener.

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