The Pirates start an early week series against the Giants, one of the hottest teams in baseball that are fresh off a series win in Milwaukee against the Pirates' rivals, the Brewers.
Pittsburgh will try to keep down the Giants emerging lineup with veteran Rich Hill, but this could be an issue with the Giants ability to crush the ball over the fence, just outside the top 10 in slugging percentage this season.
Hill has been lucky per his underlying metrics, but the Pirates lineup should be able to tag San Francisco starter Anthony DeSclafani and the Giants bullpen.
Here's how I'm betting Monday's matchup:
Pirates vs. Giants odds, run line and total
Pirates vs. Giants prediction and pick
Hill has been getting touched up with his inability to strike batters out anymore. He has a 4.27 ERA and is allowing a home run on more than 12% of fly balls in play, but it should be worse with an xERA of 5.50. The wind should be blowing at Oracle Park at north of 10 miles per hour, which should help the Giants ability to send balls over the fence.
However, the Pirates offense should be able to keep up with DeScalfani, who has been able to limit his walks to a NL low per nine innings (1.3), but has an xERA that is more than one run higher than his current ERA (4.48 vs. 3.43). The Giants right hander has been able to work out of jams at a high rate, posting a left on base rate of 67.1%, but with hitter friendly conditions this can be a spot where DeScalfani comes back to Earth.
Further, San Francisco is bottom 10 in bullpen ERA, which makes me confident the Pirates can do some damage and help out Hill to stay competitive in a high scoring game. I'll stay off the side and go for the over.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.