Cardinals vs Giants Picks and Predictions: San Francisco Gets Back On Track

St. Louis and San Francisco come into this one with identical 14-10 starts, with what looks to be a promising season for both clubs. Which side will get the upper hand today? Read our MLB betting picks for Cardinals vs. Giants to find out.

Last Updated: May 5, 2022 2:36 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Logan Webb San Francisco Giants MLB
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The St. Louis Cardinals will head west to begin a four-game series in Oracle Park tonight when they take on the San Francisco Giants. These teams have gotten out to 14-10 starts on the year, and I view both of these teams as very teams dangerous as we progress throughout the season.

St. Louis rolls into this one as winners in three of its last four, including a 10-0 drumming of the Kansas City Royals. San Francisco arrives amid a bit of a slide. It's lost three straight, including being swept in a two-game series by the Dodgers. San Fran will be looking to turn things around tonight. 

Who will take the first game of the series? Find out in our free MLB betting picks and predictions for Cardinals vs. Giants Thursday, May 5th.

Cardinals vs Giants odds

This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.

Opening odds for today's matchup were released this morning. The Giants opened up as -130 favorites, with the Braves coming back at +110. Since then, St. Louis has taken some money, and San Francisco is down to -125 in some spots. 

The total opened up at a flat 7 and stayed the same.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until first pitch and be sure to check out the full MLB odds before placing your bets.

Cardinals vs Giants predictions

Picks made on 5/5/2022 at 1:20 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Cardinals vs Giants game info

Location: Oracle Park, San Francisco, CA
Date: Thursday, May 5, 2022
First pitch: 9:45 p.m. ET
TV: Bally Sports Midwest, NBC Sports Bay Area

Cardinals vs Giants betting preview

Starting pitchers

Miles Mikolas (1-1, 1.52 ERA): Mikolas has gotten off to one of the best starts of his career. For this writer, he was a favorite fade last season, but not so much this year. He's dramatically dropped his hard-hit percentage from the previous year to one of the best in the league, and his expected ERA is by far the best it's been in his career. Mikolas' most impressive outing came against the New York Mets when he blanked them for seven innings. Outside of that, he's yet to see many potent lineups, perhaps factoring into his hot start. 

Logan Webb (3-1, 3.26 ERA): Webb is back at it again with steady performances. He doesn't do a bunch of overly impressive things, but he doesn't give up hard hits, doesn't walk a lot of hitters, and gets outs. That goes a long way and has been a significant contributor to why his expected ERA is the best in his career. Webb started the season giving up just one earned run in back-to-back performances. Since then, he's regressed a little bit, and his ERA has gone up due to that. In his last outing against the Nationals, he was battered but limited the damage to only three earned runs.


Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our MLB weather info.

Key injuries

Cardinals: Jack Flaherty (SP), Steven Matz (SP).
Giants: Logan Wade Jr. (LF), Tommy La Stella (2B), Evan Longoria (3B), Steven Duggar (CF), Anthony DeSclafani (SP), Zack Littell (RP).
Find our latest MLB injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Under is 5-1 in the Cardinals' last 6 when their opponent allows five runs or more in their previous game. Find more MLB betting trends for Cardinals vs. Giants

Cardinals vs Giants picks and predictions

Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.

Moneyline analysis

I'll be backing the Giants here, and this is simply a regression to the mean play as much as anything. 

San Francisco hasn't had an issue with offensive performances during the losing streak; It's simply been a bit unlucky and has not gotten any help from its bullpen. The Cardinals have been significant benefactors of a weak schedule thus far, having faced just two teams with a record above .500.

I think Mikolas is due for some regression here, and the Giants seem well equipped to provide it. The key to his success has always been relying on the ground ball, but San Francisco does an excellent job of not hitting too many into the dirt — ranking Top 10 in both exit velocity and hard-hit rate. While Mikolas has had a phenomenal hard-hit rate so far this season, I doubt it's very sustainable. 

My projections have the fair price in San Francisco at around -180. A big part of that is that my forecasts are unsure just how good the Cardinals really are. They, too, see just how much of their success this season has been schedule-induced rather than actual substance, and that rings even louder with Mikolas at the bill. Perhaps the Cardinals prove me wrong, but I'll have to see it before I can back them.

Prediction: Giants moneyline (-125 at FanDuel)

Over/Under analysis

The risk of a blowup on the mound from the Cardinals is relatively high, but we have some things working in our favor from that perspective. First, the Giants get clutch hits when they need them, but they aren't a team that's going to pile on a bunch of runs.

They've ranked high in MLB in runs per game to start the year, but the 2.3 runs per game in the last three are more in-line with who I believe they are. The other positive is that the Cardinals bullpen is well-rested and robust. I would put them among the Top 10 bullpens in baseball when they are healthy like today.

As we've talked about, Logan Webb just gets outs on the other side. He's someone who produces many ground balls, and the Cardinals hit into those a lot. Unfortunately, with Nolan Arenado in a bit of a slump, the Cardinals don't have a ton of pop in their bats outside of Goldschmidt and DeJong. It'll come around eventually with guys like Tyler O'Neill, but I'll ride the wave for now. 

Conditions in Oracle Park today will be cold, especially for May. Low humidity and temperatures in the low 50s are music to my ears when betting the Under. I'll roll with it here as I think this number is just a tad off. 

Prediction: Under 7 (+100 at bet365)

Best bet

In what we're expecting to be a low-scoring game, let's pick on a hitter, shall we? Let's meet Thairo Estrada (if you don't already know him). I'm going to tell you why he won't get a hit today. 

Estrada is having one of the worst seasons of his career. His xWOBA is at the bottom of baseball. In addition, his groundball rate and hard-hit rate are among the worst on the Giants. 

Estrada has struggled against breaking ball pitchers in 2022, having just five hits on 37 breaking balls this season. Do you know who throws a lot of breaking balls? You guessed it, Mike Mikolas.

Lastly, Estrada is just 1 of 11 at the plate in his last three games. You may say he's due, but luckily for us he just registered a hit in his previous game. This is one of my favorite bets on the slate today at plus money. I'll take the attractive price at DraftKings. 

Pick: Thairo Estrada Under 0.5 hits (+150 at DraftKings)

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