Cincinnati enters this series on a two-game winning streak and an away series victory over the St. Louis Cardinals. Kansas City has dropped six straight and were swept on the road by the Baltimore Orioles this weekend.
Righty Luke Weaver (1-2, 6.27) is set to make the start for the visiting Reds. Kansas City is expected to start veteran right-hander Zack Greinke (1-6, 4.59). FanDuel has Kansas City as a -116 favorite with a nine-run total with the first pitch scheduled for 8:10 pm.
Cincinnati Sparked By Elly De La Cruz
Elly De La Cruz may have a 33% strikeout rate but has sparked the Reds’ offense with some heavy but unsustainable numbers. Fellow rookies Matt McLain and Spencer Steer are right behind him in most offensive categories.
If 1B Joey Votto ever returns to the lineup, look out because the Cincinnati Reds youngins are coming.
*insert stat about how unbelievably fast Elly De La Cruz is* pic.twitter.com/E43h8W3UHR
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 10, 2023
Weaver has struggled a bit this season. He allowed seven earned runs in his last start to the Los Angeles Dodgers, but his prior four starts were encouraging. Weaver has an xFIP nearly two runs lower than his ERA, suggesting some positive regression is in store.
The Reds righty is serving up two bombs per nine innings, but his walks are down, and he’s whiffing nearly a hitter per inning pitched.
Rebuilding Royals Riding the Struggle Bus
Kansas City is rebuilding. They are 14.5 behind the Minnesota Twins in the American League Central, with no chance of reaching the playoffs. Bobby Witt Jr and rookie Maikel Garcia have strong campaigns, and veteran catcher Salvadore Perez is still a .216 ISO.
Outside of that, the Royals are a few seasons away from competing for anything other than last place.
Bobby pokes one the other way and the #Royals get an early lead!
— Bally Sports Kansas City (@BallySportsKC) June 11, 2023
Despite the 1-6 record, Greinke has been serviceable for the Royals. He gave up five earned runs in his last outing against the Miami Marlins but allowed five earned runs over 22.5 frames. His xFIP is 0.50 runs lower than his ERA.
Cincinnati Reds vs. Kansas City Royals Best Bet: Cincinnati Reds -102 (DraftKings)
Weaver is starting to find his mark, De La Cruz and the other Reds’ rookies are providing the spark and my best bet is for the Reds to win this game at -102 odds (FanDuel)
The Reds are a team on the rise. They are scoring runs, and the Reds should be able to score enough to beat the Royals.
Weaver is coming off a horrible outing but has a much better matchup with a Royals offense ranking 29th in baseball. Kansas City ranks 24th in BABIP and provides just under four runs of support for Greinke, which will not get it done.
Greinke will keep his team in the game, pitching to contact and facing a Cincinnati offense with a 4th-best .314 BABIP.
Cincy should be able to scratch out a run or two early, and if the Reds score their usual 4.44 runs of support for Weaver, they will comfortably win this game. Cincinnati Reds -102 (FanDuel)