The MLB All-Star break will come to an end on friday as teams begin play again. Below we will continue our MLB odds series as we hand out a Cincinnati Reds win total over/under prediction and pick.
The Reds are currently the surprise team in the MLB. They went on a long win streak earlier this season and have not looked back. They are 50-41 and have a one game lead in the National League Central. Surprisingly, it is three rookies that lead the Reds. Spencer Steer, Matt McLain and Elly De La Cruz lead the way for Cincinnati. As a team, the Reds are batting .257 and have the eighth best OPS in the MLB. Cincinnati has also scored the fifth most total runs in baseball. They are an exciting young team and very fun to watch.
On the mound, the Reds are struggling, though. They have the fourth worst ERA, fifth highest WHIP and sixth highest oBA. Andrew Abbott has been a welcome addition to the rotation, but Luke Weaver and Graham Ashcraft have not been the starting pitchers they have hoped for this year. Their ace, Hunter Greene, is dealing with an injury, as well. He will be out until at least August. Without him, the Reds rotation needs a lot of help.
Here are the MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
MLB Odds: Cincinnati Reds Win Total Odds
Over 84.5 games: -104
Under 84.5 games: -118
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Why The Reds Will Win 84.5 Games
Cincinnati is loaded with talent at the plate and they have been carried by them. De La Cruz, Steer and McLain are all solid at the plate. Jonathan India, Jake Fraley and TJ Friedl are all great pieces in the lineup, as well. Joey Votto is finally back from injury and he has seven home runs in 17 games. If Votto can keep that up, he will be the bat the Reds needed in their lineup to get over the hump.
With all this said, the Reds do need pitching. The good news is they are in first place in the NL Central and will almost definitely be buyers at the deadline. Pitchers like Lucas Giolito, Dylan Cease and Paul Blackburn are just a couple of pitching pieces that would make a huge difference in the rotation. They could also use a reliever or two. Cincinnati will be looking for players to strengthen their rotation and bullpen at the deadline and this will only help their team. The Reds have to go 35-36 in their final 71 games, and this should be easily attainable with a few trades for pitching.
Why The Reds Won’t Win 84.5 Games
The worry here is that the Reds’ rookies can not keep up their hot pace. De La Cruz, McLain and Steer could all fall off and finish the season on a cold hitting streak. Cincinnati is a team that relies on their offense to win games, so if the bats go cold, the Reds will not win. The Reds have to play the Brewers (twice), Giants, Diamondbacks and Dodgers to open up after the All-Star break. Those five series are going to be very tough to win and it will test just how good the Reds really are. Cincinnati can bear down and continue winning, but in those 16 games, if they win only seven or eight, it could be a sign that they are not as good as we thought.
Cincinnati does not have the easiest second half schedule, so the hope is that they trade for some pitching to help out. However, if the Reds fail to get some immediate pitching help, they are going to lose more than they win. When it gets late into the season and the dog days of August, pitching becomes extremely important. If Cincinnati does not get the arms they need to win, they will not have a good rest of the season.
Final Cincinnati Reds Win Total Prediction
The Reds are a good team, but there are definitely some concerns. Will the rookies continue their hot play? Can Votto keep hitting for power? How will Hunter Greene be in his return? Will the Reds make the blockbuster pitching trade to bolster their pitching staff? All these questions will be answered in due time, but I think all the answers will be positive. The Reds want to win and they want to do it now. I expect the Reds to go over .500 the rest of the season and finish around 90 wins.
Final Cincinnati Reds Win Total Prediction: Reds Over 84.5 (-104)
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