Orioles vs Cardinals Prediction, Picks, and Odds for Tonight’s MLB Game

Kyle Bradish is a great pitcher when at 100%. The problem is he isn't there yet as he works his way back from an elbow strain that cost him the first month of the 2024 season. The Cardinals are bad, but they work counts and can chase Bradish early.

Jason Wilson - Publishing Editor at Covers.com
Jason Wilson • Publishing Editor
May 21, 2024 • 12:25 ET • 4 min read
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This article contains predictions for an old game!

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Kyle Bradish Baltimore Orioles MLB
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The St. Louis Cardinals rode a terrific Sonny Gray start and perfect bullpen outing to victory over the Baltimore Orioles in Game 1 of this set at Busch Stadium on Monday night.

My Orioles vs. Cardinals predictions expect another short outing for a Baltimore starter, but it may not be due to an offensive explosion from the Redbirds.

Read on for my favorite MLB picks on Tuesday, May 21.

Orioles vs Cardinals prediction

My best bet
Kyle Bradish Under 16.5 outs (-104 at Caesars)

My analysis
Baltimore Orioles right-hander Kyle Bradish has looked pretty solid on the mound across three starts since returning from an elbow injury that landed him on the IL to open the season. He's allowed four earned runs over 13 2/3 innings of work (2.63 ERA) with 17 strikeouts and six walks. It's a small sample size but the walk rate is up more than 3% from 2023, leading to less efficiency and shorter outings.

It makes sense. Elbow injuries are serious business. Just look at how many pitchers have lost their season to Tommy John surgery this year. Fortunately for Bradish, his sprain wasn't deemed severe enough to warrant such a procedure, but he hasn't worked his way back to last season's form just yet.

In many ways, the St. Louis Cardinals may appear to be a perfect "get right" spot for the right-hander. The club has floundered for much of the season and its offense — particularly the likes of Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Gorman — has underwhelmed.

However, for all their failings, the Cardinals draw walks and work counts with the best of them. St. Louis owns a 9.2% walk rate and 3.94 pitches per plate appearance, with both marks ranking seventh in MLB.

Gorman and Lars Nootbaar are hitting .196 and .213, respectively, but have walk rates of 11.7% and 15.2%. 

The weather may also play a factor. While St. Louis is projected to be sunny at opening pitch, thunderstorms are looming in the forecast partway through. If the game starts on time and goes into a lengthy delay before the sixth inning, chances are Bradish won't go out to continue even if he's having a great start.

A possible rain delay can't be counted on as the primary factor for this handicap, but it's a nice added wrinkle. Bradish hasn't thrown more than 90 pitches in a start yet, and his lack of efficiency has topped him out at five innings with two of three outings wrapping up even before that. Additionally, our Covers Prop Projections powered by The BAT expect 15.4 outs for Bradish.

To clear his outs recorded prop today, he'll need to record an out in the sixth inning, and this isn't the matchup for that to happen.

Orioles vs Cardinals same-game parlay (SGP)

Kyle Bradish Under 16.5 outs

Adley Rutschman Over 1.5 total bases

Alt. total Under 10.5

Initially, I wanted to add Lance Lynn Over 4.5 strikeouts to this SGP. But while the weather gives a little extra intrigue to Bradish's Under on his outs, it brings Lynn's ability to hit five strikeouts into question. He's fanning just under a batter per inning, which would likely require six frames. And while The BAT projects 5.5 strikeouts, the rain could abbreviate his outing. Plus, the Orioles aren't a major strikeout team and Lynn hasn't pitched beyond five innings in any of his last five starts.

So, we pivot to Orioles catcher Adley Rutschman, who is hitting .304 with nine home runs on the season. He is a contact machine and registered three consecutive multi-hit games before back-to-back 0-fer's. Rutschman strikes out less than 18% of the time and he's less likely to get the rest of the night off if the game is halted by rain partway through.

Finally, I'm adding Under 10.5 total runs to the final score. Bradish has been inefficient but has limited the overall damage during his starts. And while the Cardinals work counts, they have struggled to score with much regularity. Both teams have solid bullpens, so this total gives us a bit of a cushion in case things go sideways at some point.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

Orioles vs Cardinals odds

Orioles vs Cardinals live odds

Orioles vs Cardinals opening odds

  • Run line: Baltimore -1.5 (+115) | St. Louis +1.5 (-135)
  • Moneyline: Baltimore -140 | St. Louis +120
  • Over/Under: Over 8.5 (-110) | Under 8.5 (-110)

Orioles vs Cardinals spread and Over/Under analysis

  • After opening at Orioles -140, there has been slight movement in Baltimore's direction.
  • The total opened at 8.5 and has been bet up to an even 9 juiced slightly to the Under at many books.
  • The Orioles are fetching 75% of moneyline wagers while the Under makes up 55% of bets, per Covers Consensus.

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Orioles vs Cardinals trend

The Cardinals have hit the Team Total Under in 24 of their last 39 games. Find more MLB betting trends for Orioles vs Cardinals.

Orioles vs Cardinals game info

Location: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, MO
Date: Tuesday, 5-21-2024
First pitch: 7:45 p.m. ET
Orioles starting pitcher: Kyle Bradish
(0-0, 2.63 ERA)
Cardinals starting pitcher: Lance Lynn
(1-2, 4.17 ERA)

Orioles vs Cardinals latest injuries

Orioles vs Cardinals weather

Not intended for use in MA.
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