Two of the teams expected to compete for the division crown in the NL Central will begin their season series on Thursday, with the Milwaukee Brewers visiting the St. Louis Cardinals for a three-game series.
Who will get the edge in the early season battle between Milwaukee and St. Louis? Find out in our best free MLB betting picks and predictions for Brewers vs. Cardinals on April 8, with first pitch set for 4:15 p.m. ET.
Brewers vs Cardinals odds
Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.
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MLB sharp money and line movement reportBy Patrick Everson
DraftKings opened with Milwaukee a -136 favorite Wednesday night, jumped to -155 by midmorning today and is at -150 as of 1:30 p.m. ET. However, St. Louis is drawing 67 percent of moneyline tickets and 72 percent of moneyline dollars. The total bounced between 8 and 7.5 a couple of times and is now at 7.5 (Under -113), although ticket count is 2/1 and money 3/1 on the Over.Check out the full line movement for this game
Brewers vs Cardinals betting preview
Corbin Burnes (0-1, 1.42 ERA): Milwaukee was unable to reward an absolute gem from Burnes in his first start of the season. In a 2-0 win for the Twins over the Brewers, Burnes was handed the loss despite allowing just a single hit and no walks across 6 1-3 innings while striking out 11. Going back to last season and including spring training, Burnes has been dealing and gets Ks with the best of them.
Adam Wainwright (0-1, 20.25 ERA): While the Brewers wasted Burnes' first start, there was no coming back from Wainwright's first start for the Cards. The long-time St. Louis pitcher got cooked to begin the year, allowing seven hits and a walk across 2 2-3 innings for an ERA of 20.25.
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Brewers: Kolten Wong 2B (Out), Lorenzo Cain CF (Probable), Jacob Nottingham C (Out), Derek Fisher LF (Out), Bobby Wahl RP (Out).
Cardinals: Harrison Bader CF (Out).
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Betting trend to know
The Under is 5-1-1 in the last seven meetings between the Cardinals and Brewers. Find more MLB betting trends for Brewers vs. Cardinals.
After an opening day win against the Reds, the Cardinals came back down to earth to wrap up the series, with Cincinnati winning 9-6 in game two before hammering St. Louis 12-1 in the finale. A sweep against the Marlins has gotten the Cards back on track, but their struggles against the Reds certainly suggest a reason for concern behind ace Jack Flaherty in the rotation.
A thrilling 6-5 opening day win against the Twins was followed by Milwaukee's bats going quiet, with just five runs scored across the next three games. Though the Brewers may be off to a slow start at the plate, they were able to take two of three from the Cubs. It would be nice to see Christian Yelich get going in what should be a return to form in 2021, but all-in-all Milwaukee has to be pleased with the way it has begun the year relative to the talent on its roster.
These two teams should remain close in the NL Central race all season, but the gap in quality between the starters taking the mound on Thursday gives us the confidence to take Milwaukee.
PREDICTION: Brewers (-126)
While it hasn't been a flawless start for St. Louis, the Cards have to be pleased with the early returns from their offseason addition of five-time All-Star and eight-time Gold Glove winner Nolan Arenado. The stud third baseman has started well at the plate, going 9 for 25 with one home run through six games.
However, the Cards have been swing-happy to begin the year — Arenado included. St. Louis's lineup has the sixth-most strikeouts in the MLB this season (through Tuesday's games), with Arenado going down swinging six times in 25 plate appearances, after just 20 strikeouts in 182 appearances a year ago. That sets this game up as a poor matchup for St. Louis, with Burnes no doubt ready to mow through the Cards' lineup several times over.
Can the Brewers inspire enough confidence to lean toward the Over here? It's unlikely. As of Wednesday, Milwaukee is 27th in runs per game, 28th in batting average and dead-last in on base percentage. Add in Busch Stadium's unfriendly confines for batters and we are going Under on this total.
PREDICTION: Under 7.5 (+102)
Brewers vs Cardinals betting card
- Brewers (-126)
- Under 7.5 (+102)
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