Yesterday, the Kansas City Royals shocked the baseball world when relievers Josh Staumont and Mike Mayers combined to take a perfect game into the eighth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals. Now K.C. will get a chance to make it two in a row over their rivals tonight when they send Zack Greinke (1-5, 4.55 ERA) to the mound against St. Louis righty Miles Mikolas (3-1, 4.23 ERA). First pitch from Busch Stadium is set for 7:45 p.m. ET.
The Cardinals are -190 moneyline favorites on DraftKings Sportsbook, while the Royals are +160 underdogs. The total is set at 9.
Royals-Cardinals picks: Tuesday, May 30
Out: RP Josh Taylor (left shoulder impingement syndrome), SP Brad Keller (right shoulder impingement syndrome), OF Kyle Isbel (left hamstring strain), SP Ryan Yarbrough (head fracture)
Day to day: Lars Nootbaar (back spasms)
Out: OF Dylan Carlson (ankle sprain), OF Tyler O’Neill (lower back strain), SP/RP Jake Woodford (right shoulder inflammation)
Zack Greinke vs. Miles Mikolas
A day after two Royals relievers nearly made history, one of baseball’s elder statesmen will look to keep the momentum rolling for the Royals pitching staff. Greinke’s command is as strong as ever (96th percentile in walk rate and 73rd percentile in chase rate), but he’s still struggling to limit hard contact (32nd percentile in average exit velocity and 10th percentile in expected batting average). In his each of five starts in May, Greinke has gone either five or 5.2 innings, and has given up anywhere between zero and three earned runs. At this point in his career, numbers like that are the average for Greinke, who won’t rack up many strikeouts but should keep his team in the game.
Mikolas takes the mound on normal rest as the Cardinals finish up a streak of playing 19 games in 19 days. Like Greinke, Mikolas’ command is top notch (85 percentile in walk rate) but he also struggles in limiting hard contact (28th percentile in exit velocity, 5th percentile in expected batting average). That said, he shoved his last time out against the Cincinnati Reds firing seven scoreless innings with five strikeouts — his second straight start of seven innings.
While both of these pitchers can give up runs in bunches, I’m banking on the under here. The Cardinals are exhausted (as mentioned above, this will be their 19th game in 19 days), and they haven’t played in a game that’s had 9+ runs in nearly a week. This over has hit only once in the Royals’ last four games as well, so I’m banking on it being a low-scoring game tonight.
Pick: Under 9
The Cardinals close out this marathon stretch with a win. The offense should be able to tally a couple runs off Greinke early, and Mikolas and the bullpen should be able to hold it down from there.