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The Sharp Money Market for July 23, 2021

A pitchers’ duel in the Midwest

Milwaukee Brewers v Chicago Cubs Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Tonight, the AL Central-leading Chicago White Sox (58-38) will take on the NL Central frontrunners, the Milwaukee Brewers (56-41), with the first pitch scheduled for 7:10 p.m. CST. This will be the beginning of a three-game series between the Sox and the Brew Crew, but perhaps even more importantly it is the start of a seven-game journey away from the confines of the South Side’s Guaranteed Rate Field.

The listed pitchers

Freddy Peralta (7-3, 2.39 ERA) will take the mound for Milwaukee, and he has quietly been one of the better pitchers in the National League. While he did not do so well in his most recent start against the pesky Cincinnati Reds, a game where he gave up three earned runs over five innings pitched, he has been electric at Milwaukee’s American Family Field, where his record stands at 4-1. His home ERA of 2.04 is pretty fantastic, as well as his home 0.72 WHIP.

The White Sox will turn to Lucas Giolito (8-6, 3.90 ERA). He was absolutely stellar in his most recent game against the Houston Astros, pitching a complete game and only giving up one earned run, in addition to eight strikeouts. Of the Brewers players he has faced in his career, he’s held them to a .194 batting average.

The pick

This interleague clash has “pitchers’ duel” written all over it. Because the White Sox and Brewers have done so well to this point in the season, it feels very risky to take any moneyline or run line action. The White Sox have been merely so-so on the road this year, but this is a team that is liable to get hot during any given inning, even with the rash of injuries it has dealt with this summer. Chicago has absolutely destroyed opposing teams, to the tune of a +124 run differential this season, but Peralta should be up to the task of limiting baserunners as much as anyone else.

For my money, I am leaning towards a total runs bet of U-8. This game should prove to be hard-fought and may come down to a single at-bat. I believe the Brewers will want to set the tone for this series by limiting runs, and this is probably the best matchup this weekend to give us that sort of result.

Prediction: Under 8 runs (-110)