The Cleveland Guardians face off against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Game 2 of this three game interleague series. The Guardians won game 1 of this series last night in extra innings after blowing a 4-1 lead early. The Diamondbacks pitched Zach Davies just two innings so they ended up needing nine innings from their bullpen which should work in the favor of the Guardians. Neither team was very successful with runners on base or with RISP. The Guardians went 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position last night and left 11 runners on base. The Diamondbacks went 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position and left 7 runners on base.
Zac Gallen is starting for the Diamondbacks, and he has been their ace this season. He has been a little more hittable lately though with a 3.03 ERA in July and a 5.26 ERA in June. Triston McKenzie has been dominant for the Guardians though, he allowed 4 ER in 7 innings in his last start, and he was still 3-1 with a 1.34 ERA in July. McKenzie is also a lot better at home this season going 3-1 with a 2.89 ERA. I think the Diamondbacks will struggle against a starter who has been dominant lately who they haven’t seen before. The Guardians are 26-19 at home this season while they are just 27-30 on the road this season so they significantly benefit from playing at home. I thought there would be a bit of a letdown for the Guardians coming home after a long road trip and I was somewhat right as it probably wasn’t worth the -165 price, but they still did end up winning.
There is another wrinkle with the games today and that is the trade deadline that is at 6pm EST today. With every game after that time except one, we will see plenty of players traded before that time. The Guardians are in a position to fight for their division as well as a Wild Card spot, so they won’t trade any big names. Well, I should say they won’t trade any big names without getting good value for them. We know the Guardians are more than willing to trade top players when they are in the playoff race after the Trevor Bauer deadline trade a couple seasons ago. The Diamondbacks are definitely sellers this season though so I wouldn’t be surprised to see another player or two traded before the game. There could be a reliever or two traded as well, and that wouldn’t be good for a Dbacks bullpen that pitched 9 innings last night. Take the Guardians at home.
John's BOTD: Guardians ML (-135) vs Diamondbacks