Justin Verlander’s home debut with the New York Mets didn’t go well. He was knocked around for six runs in five innings against Tampa Bay on Tuesday. The future Hall of Famer will try to rebound and give the Mets some innings at the end of a long day when he starts against the Cleveland Guardians on Sunday night.
It’ll be the second game of a doubleheader between the teams after a rainout on Saturday. That could make for some tricky online gambling but we’ll give you what you need before analyzing the MLB lines.
Guardians Still Stinging from Series Opener
Saturday’s rainout took away Cleveland’s chance to try to get over the series opener, which turned into a disaster. Cleveland blew an early 5-0 lead and then gave up three runs in the bottom of the 10th in a painful 10-9 defeat that headlined the MLB news pages that night. The collapse spoiled a rare solid offensive night for the Guardians, who produced their most runs since April 3.
Mets Showing Signs of Surge
New York has been among the more disappointing teams early in the season, but manager Buck Showalter saw something in Friday’s rally. “Starting to feel the guys are expecting something good to happen instead of something the other way,” he said. It was the Mets’ third straight win – their longest in nearly a month. Something to keep in mind when making your MLB picks.
Probable Starting Pitchers
Shane Bieber (3-2, 3.20 ERA) vs. Justin Verlander (1-2, 4.76)
The other former Cy Young Award winner in this matchup, Bieber is also coming off a clunker. He gave up five earned runs on a career-high 12 hits in 4⅔ innings at the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday. The 27-year-old allowed two home runs for the second time in his last three starts, something he did just three times all last year. Eduardo Escobar and Starling Marte are a combined 7-for-8 with two homers and four doubles vs Bieber.
Verlander will be making his fourth start since returning from a muscle strain in his back. He’s allowed four home runs and four doubles in those three starts, so there’s been plenty of good contact against him. The 40-year-old will be careful with Jose Ramirez (11-for-34 vs Verlander), but the rest of the Cleveland roster is just 2-for-32 against him. Factor that in when analyzing the MLB spreads at the sportsbook.
Guardians vs Mets Head-to Head
New York has a 14-5 lead in the all-time series with wins in each of the last five meetings entering the first game on Sunday.
Guardians vs Mets Game Information
- Game: Guardians (20-24) vs Mets (23-23)
- Location: Citi Field, Queens, NY
- Day/Time: Sunday, May 21, 7:10 p.m. ET
- Guardians vs Mets Live Stream: MLB.tv
Guardians vs Mets Betting Lines
It’s a marquee matchup on the mound but both pitchers had issues their last time out and we just don’t know yet if Verlander has found a groove. This is a tiny over/under that just a few big swings can crush.
Pick: Over 7½ (-115)
It’s hard to know where the bullpens will be entering this one with the teams playing a matinee hours before. The Mets have some good vibes going on entering the day, so that might be enough to go on. Take the hosts to ride Verlander to a win, but take part in some live betting if the matinee changes the landscape.
Pick: Mets -145