MLB Predictions Today | Odds, Best Bets for Cardinals vs Reds, Mets vs Cubs, More (May 25)

MLB’s Thursday slate gets started early with some afternoon baseball, and continues throughout the evening. There are 10 games on the Thursday, May 25, schedule and our experts have found plenty of betting value on the board.

The have picks in multiple games — including Cardinals vs. Reds, Marlins vs. Rockies, Blue Jays vs. Rays and Mets vs. Cubs — so continue reading for picks and expert analysis.

Here’s a look at our MLB best bets for Thursday, May 25.

Thursday’s MLB Best Bets

The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that our MLB betting staff is targeting from today’s slate of games. Click the team logos for one the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.

Cardinals vs. Reds

By Doug Ziefel

The Cardinals come into this matchup as one of the hottest teams in baseball. They got off to a ridiculously slow start, but this lineup is loaded so we all expected St. Louis to make a run at some point.

Despite their recent hot streak, the Cardinals are still due for more improvement. They are fourth in xWOBACON and are tied for the highest xBA in the Majors. In addition, they have five hitters in their lineup with above-average hard-hit rates. Shockingly, that doesn’t even include Nolan Arenado.

This scorching hot lineup has a tremendous matchup as they face Luke Weaver. Weaver has been battered in his return to a big league rotation and ranks in the bottom 20% of all qualified pitchers average exit velocity, hard-hit rate and barrel rate.

Don’t let Weaver’s xERA fool you. He may be due for positive regression, but this afternoon, his numbers will get worse before they get better.

While I just spent time tearing apart Weaver, Miles Mikolas hasn’t proven to be much better. He comes into his 11th start of the season with a 4.77 ERA and ranks in the bottom 10% of the league in xBA and whiff rate.

However, Mikolas has found a way to right the ship. He hasn’t allowed more than three runs over his past seven starts and has a 1.17 WHIP in May.

Mikolas should succeed against this over-achieving Reds lineup.

Cincinnati’s park aides the offense, which has helped the Reds otherwise subpar lineup. However, the Reds have the second-lowest xBA in the Majors and are last in hard-hit rate and average exit velocity.

The Cardinals are in line to end this series on a high note. Their lineup has been crushing the ball, and they’ll be facing a pitcher who hasn’t shown he can succeed against big league hitters.

Back the Cardinals on the run line.

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Blue Jays vs. Rays

Rays 1st 5 Innings Moneyline (-138)

By Tanner McGrath

I’ll keep fading Alek Manoah until I can’t anymore. The guy is seriously broken, from a command standpoint (13.9% walk rate) to a Stuff standpoint (92 Stuff+).

Manoah has lost a tick of velocity across his arsenal and a bunch of spin and movement on his slider and changeup. He’s also moved to a sinker-heavy approach, which is surprising after he posted a -18 Run Value on the four-seam last year.

Either way, Manoah is cooked. He’s got a 5.15 ERA, which is only bested by his 6.55 xERA.

Conversely, I’m happy to back Zach Eflin. He’s had three rougher starts than usual, but had to face the hard-hitting Orioles and Yankees on the road during the stretch. Meanwhile, his underlying metrics show he’s been unlucky (2.94 xERA, 3.02 xFIP).

Eflin is due for a positive-regression, bounce-back start. Why not against these Blue Jays?

These are two of the best lineups in baseball, but their offensive numbers are essentially a wash.

Meanwhile, the Rays’ bullpen has been extremely shaky recently, and they used Pete Fairbanks in Tuesday’s win.

Therefore, this is ultimately a direct bet on Eflin, and against Manoah. So, I’ll grab the Rays in the first half, as long as it stays below (-150).

What is QuickSlip?

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Marlins vs. Rockies

By Nick Shlain

One of my favorite bets on Thursday’s slate is the Miami Marlins moneyline at -118. Miami is taking on the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field once again.

The Marlins are coming off a decisive victory on Wednesday night and will e sending Braxton Garrett to the mound. Garrett has a 3.52 xFIP, a 23% strikeout rate, a 4% walk rate and a 45% ground-ball percentage this season. Though Garrett’s recent form mat be even ore important.

He’s allowed just four earned runs over 16 2/3 innings in his past three starts. Garrett has also struck out 16 and allowed just one earned run over his past two starts. He gives the Marlins the clear advantage when it comes to the starting pitching matchup.

Kyle Freeland gets the start for the Rockies and he boasts a 4.90 xFIP and a 17% strikeout rate this season. While the Rockies are averaging 5.13 runs per game at home, the Marlins have shown over the course of this series that they also have little trouble scoring at Coors Field. With these bullpens having nearly identical ERAs, the starting pitching advantage is enough for me to give a clear edge to the Marlins here.

What is QuickSlip?

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Mets vs. Cubs

By D.J. James

The New York Mets and Chicago Cubs don’t necessarily crush right-handed pitching, but they aren’t bad, either. In May, Chicago has a 97 wRC+ with an 11.2% walk rate off of righties, while New York boasts a 100 wRC+ and a 8.1% walk rate. Over the past two weeks, the Mets raised their wRC+ to 104, and the Cubs raised theirs to 103, both above average.

The Mets will throw Carlos Carrasco on Thursday and he holds an 8.68 ERA, a 7.09 xERA and a sub-13% strikeout rate this season. Those numbers are abysmal and paired with a Barrel Percentage around 13% and an xSLG of .538, the Cubs should have a field day. Over the past week, the Cubs have a 127 wRC+ off of righties, so they are red-hot.

Jameson Taillon, who has been equally bad, will start for the Cubs. He has an 8.10 ERA and a 6.06 xERA with a Barrel Percentage over 12% and an xSLG of .523 this season. Meanwhile, the Mets have a 130 wRC+ off of righties in the past week.

In relief, both teams have an xFIP over 4.10, which won’t bode well against these hot lineups.

This line is far too low in this game. Neither team is throwing an ace, or even a reasonably solid starter. Take this over from 7 (-102), and play it to 9 (-125). There should be plenty of runs at Wrigley Field on Thursday night.

What is QuickSlip?

QuickSlip is an Action Network feature that allows users to automatically pre-load their bet slip at FanDuel Sportsbook.