Free Picks: Cincinnati Reds vs Milwaukee Brewers

Brewers vs Reds Week 8
Cincinnati Reds vs Milwaukee Brewers, MLB, American Family Field

The Cincinnati Reds (33-31) will face the Milwaukee Brewers (38-28) to close out a three-game series on Wednesday, and both teams are at their best right now. They both entered Tuesday night as winners in eight of their past 10 games, as well as four of their past five. The Reds can thump anybody in baseball with an offensive overload, led by MVP candidates Jesse Winker and Nicholas Castellanos. Milwaukee has won four of seven meetings with Cincinnati this year, but all of those came on the road.

Two hot teams pit hitting against pitching

Not that anyone predicted this entering the season, but the Cincinnati Reds are an absolute juggernaut offensively. The aforementioned Winker and Castellanos combo have the Reds rocking to a .771 team OPS the past 30 days, which is fifth in the majors.

The Milwaukee Brewers don’t do quite as much damage at the plate, but on the mound they’re among the best. The Brewers have a 3.64 ERA over the past 30 days, good for 10th in the league. And their rotation’s season-long ERA (3.26) is fifth in MLB.

So what wins out, hitting or pitching? It’s a classic, not-totally-answerable question in baseball, and it’s at the forefront of this matchup between the Reds and Brewers on Wednesday. Right now, bettors are giving the edge rather definitively to the Brewers, who serve as -135 money line favorites (10Bet) among the day’s MLB picks. On the flip side, the Reds lag as +115 money line underdogs (10Bet).

Somebody had to be the underdog, because that’s just how betting on the money line works. But neither team has acted much like an underdog lately, as they’ve both swept two of their past three series (the other series was against each other, and Milwaukee took two of three). Entering Tuesday night, the Reds had scored 37 runs in their previous four games, while the Brewers had allowed just 22 runs over their previous five — that should give you an idea of what these teams’ strengths are.

Both starters on Wednesday are strong: Cincinnati’s Tyler Mahle (6-2, 3.56 ERA) and Milwaukee’s Freddy Peralta (6-1, 2.25 ERA). Mahle hasn’t faced the Brewers yet this season, but Peralta has seen the Reds twice. Both of those starts resulted in no-decisions, but he has a respectable 2.57 ERA against Cincinnati in five starts dating back to 2018.

Peralta has definitely earned better results, with a 2.25 ERA in his past seven starts (versus Mahle’s 3.82 ERA in the same span), but can Cincinnati’s offense make up the difference? As a team, the Reds have a .751 OPS against Peralta in their respective careers (89 combined plate appearances), which would rank fourth among MLB teams currently.

In fairness, current Brewers have crushed Mahle, just in fewer plate appearances (1.089 OPS in 42 plate appearances). So that still suggests an advantage for Milwaukee.

Then again, this will be Cincinnati’s third look at Peralta this season. The more opportunities hitters have to face pitchers, the better they fare, typically. Given that fact, and Cincinnati’s excellent value as the underdog, we’ll side with the Reds on the money line in this BetPicks prediction.

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  • Cincinnati is 8-2 on the money line in its past 10
  • The OVER has cashed in four of the Reds’ past five games
  • Milwaukee is 8-2 on the money line in its past 10
  • The OVER has cashed in four of the Brewers’ past five games

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Jordan Horrobin is a freelance sports journalist based in Toronto, Ontario, who enjoys sports-related research and telling engaging stories. His work can also be found at Sportsnet, Forbes and elsewhere. Though he abandoned most of his team-specific fandoms in the interest of unbiased analysis, Jordan roots hard for his fantasy football/hockey teams (and he's a complete homer for all things Ohio University).