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Picks, predictions for Reds vs. Nationals on Tuesday, July 4

Chris Landers shares their top picks on DraftKings Sportsbook for Reds-Nationals on Tuesday, July 4.

Elly De La Cruz and Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds hug after winning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on July 03, 2023 in Washington, DC. Photo by Jess Rapfogel/Getty Images

A full July 4 slate of baseball gets started bright and early, as the Cincinnati Reds and Washington Nationals play the second game of their three-game set on Tuesday morning. First pitch from Nationals Park is scheduled for 11:05 a.m. ET. Brett Kennedy (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will make his first start since 2018 for the Reds, while the Nationals give the ball to veteran lefty Patrick Corbin (5-9, 4.84).

The Reds enter as -125 favorites on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook, with Washington checking in at +105. The run total is set at 10.

Reds-Nationals picks: Tuesday, July 4

Injury report


Out: RP Ben Lively (pectoral), SP Hunter Greene (hip), RP Casey Legumina (shoulder), SP Nick Lodolo (leg), RP Tejay Antone (elbow), RP Tony Santillan (back), RP Vladimir Gutierrez (elbow)


Out: RP Thaddeus Ward (shoulder), RP Carl Edwards Jr. (shoulder), OF Victor Robles (back), C Israel Pineda (oblique)

Starting pitchers

Brett Kennedy vs. Patrick Corbin

With Greene, Lodolo and now Ben Lively all on the IL, the Reds have had to get creative with their rotation in recent days, and now they’ll turn to Kennedy, a former 11th-round pick of the San Diego Padres in 2015 who hasn’t appeared in a Major League game since 2018. The righty signed with Cincy back in May and has been pitching pretty well for Triple-A Louisville, with a 3.71 ERA over eight starts. He spent last season bouncing between the Boston Red Sox organization and independent ball after being released by the Padres.

It’s a sign of how far Corbin has fallen that his 4.84 ERA counts as improvement, but the lefty has been at least slightly less flammable this season after a disastrous 2021 and 2022. He’s also coming off arguably his best start of the year, spinning seven innings of shutout ball while allowing five hits and striking out nine against the Seattle Mariners last week. The lefty continues to work largely off of his fastball and slider, with the latter starting to look more like it did during Corbin’s peak in the late 2010s. If he’s spotting his sinker on the corners and getting his slider down, he can still be effective, but the margin for error is very slim.

Over/Under pick

Corbin was great last time out, but I’m simply not buying it as a durable change; he’s been among the worst starters in baseball for three years now, and the Reds have handled lefties all year, with a .758 team OPS that ranks ninth in baseball. Monday’s game ended in a 3-2 final, but that’s just the third time in their last 10 that a Reds game has failed to clear this number, and I think that trend continues on Tuesday — especially with a total unknown in Kennedy getting the ball for Cincy.

Pick: Over 10

Moneyline pick

I don’t expect either of these pitchers to go very deep into this game, which means this boils down to which bullpen and lineup is more trustworthy. The Reds come out ahead in both categories, and I’m backing them to pick up a series win on July 4, especially with such relatively short odds.

Pick: Reds