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The Pittsburgh Pirates are looking to get back on track at home against the lowly Detroit Tigers on Tuesday night.
Tigers heading south in a hurry
It has been a disastrous start to the 2019 season for the Tigers that has seen them fall to one of the worst marks in not only the American League but the entire majors. They have had plenty of difficulties finding any level of consistency on the field that has pushed them completely out of the playoff picture entirely. Detroit is currently 21 games behind the Minnesota Twins for the AL Central lead. They haven’t been able to depend on either their pitching or hitting this season with them being on the lower end of the spectrum in both regards. The bulk of their issues has come from an utter lack of offensive production that has them ranked as arguably the least productive in the league being last in runs scored, 28th in hits, 29th in home runs hits, 28th in batting average, and 28th in slugging percentage. Their offense has been a weak point throughout the year that has led to them faltering this early in the campaign.
— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) June 15, 2019
The Tigers’ most dependable bat has been the play of former All-Star first baseman Miguel Cabrera that is currently batting .294 with four home runs, and 29 RBI on the year. Cabrera has picked it up as of late as he’s hitting .351 with two home runs, and seven RBI in 37 at-bats this month. However, it will need to be more than just his hitting to help turn things around as their starting pitching that has been among the least effective in the league. Detroit will be turning to right-hander Daniel Norris, who has had his issues this year as he holds a 2-5 record with a 4.52 ERA this season through his first 14 games played with 11 starts. Norris hasn’t been able to find his rhythm as he has dropped four out of his last six starts while giving up multiple runs in each of those outings in the process. Ultimately, if the Tigers hope to get back on track, it will need Norris to put forth a strong outing to give them a chance to grab a road win.
Pirates hoping to continue to build off momentum
It has been a rough last couple of weeks for the Pirates that has seen them fall out of the mix for the playoffs both in the NL Central and wildcard picture. This saw them go on an eight-game skid, but they have won their last two straight games that have helped push them back in the right direction. They are currently eight games back in the division trailing the Milwaukee Brewers and seven games behind both the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs for both of the wildcard spots. It has been an uneven first half of the season that has been more of a struggle for them to push forward. They have had some bright spots along the roster that has been led by the stellar play of first baseman Josh Bell, who has pushed his way squarely into the NL MVP conversation by this start as he’s batting .321 with 19 home runs, 65 RBI, and 52 runs scored through 70 games played.
— Pirates (@Pirates) June 17, 2019
Bell may have cooled off a bit to begin the month of June batting just .236 with a home run and 13 RBI, he is still a huge source of offensive production for them this season. His play has been key in providing the Pirates with a much-needed spark as they have been toward the middle of the pack in that regard this year. Meanwhile, outfielder Starlin Marte has been a bright spot in the month of June as he has been swinging a hot bat hitting .373 with four home runs, 12 RBI, and 11 runs scored in 59 at-bats. Although the Pirates have gotten off to a slow start in June, his play at the plate has been huge in helping make up for the drop off in production from Bell and the other bats in the lineup. This will certainly need to be the case with Mitchell Keller taking the bump on Tuesday as he’s struggled in his first two outings of the year as he holds a 15.43 ERA over that span. His inexperience could play a factor even against a struggling offense that the Tigers have. It will be crucial for their bats to step it up to back up Keller in his third career start.
- Pirates are 5-1 in their last six interleague games against a left-handed starter.
- Pirates are 24-7 in their last 31 interleague games.
- Pirates are 42-13 in their last 55 interleague games against a team with a losing record.
- Tigers are 2-8 in their last 10 after scoring two runs or less in their previous game.
- Tigers are 1-5 in their last six interleague games against a team with a losing record.
- Tigers are 1-6 in their last seven interleague road games against a team with a losing record.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Although the Pirates have been going through a recent tough stretch, they are set to face one of the worst teams in the league. This should be a prime opportunity for them to put forth a strong outing on their home field. Keep in mind, the Tigers are 0-4 in the last four meetings.
Prediction: Pittsburgh -152
Full-Game Total Pick
The Tigers may have one of the league’s least productive offenses, the Pirates will have ample opportunity to get their bats back on track. Norris has had his fair share of struggles this season on the mound. The over is also 15-4 in the last 19 meetings.
Prediction: Over 8.5