MLB Thursday preview: Indians at White Sox, Mets at Dodgers
Cleveland Indians (28-27) at Chicago White Sox (26-29), 8:10 p.m. ET
MLB Free Play: Indians runlineCarlos Carrasco (4-5, 4.60 ERA) (CLE) -190 / -1.5 runs (-115) / Over 8.5 runs (-120) Manny Banuelos (2-4, 7.71 ERA) (CHW) +170 / +1.5 runs (-105) / Under 8.5 runs (EVEN)
The road team appears to have the upper hand, as the AL Central rivals square off for the first of a four-game series at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Carlos Carrasco has had an uneven first two months overall for Cleveland but has dominated the South Siders. He has shut out the White Sox in two starts, both wins (12 innings total). Chicago first baseman Jose Abreu and catcher James McCann are a combined 14-for-77 (.182) all-time against Carrasco, while third baseman Yoan Moncada is hitless in 12 encounters (10 strikeouts). Carrasco will also have baseball's second-best bullpen by ERA (3.08) backing him in this one.
Manny Banuelos has had two disastrous starts against Cleveland this month. He's allowed 10 runs on 12 hits and eight walks in 8 1/3 innings. His relief corps has allowed nearly a full earned run more than Carrasco's this year (4.01).
New York Mets (27-28) at Los Angeles Dodgers (37-19), 10:10 p.m. ET
MLB Free Play: UnderJason Vargas (1-2, 5.22 ERA) (NYM) +230 / +1.5 runs (+115) / Over 8.5 runs (-125) Hyun-Jin Ryu (7-1, 1.65 ERA) (LAD) -260 / -1.5 runs (-135) / Under 8.5 runs (+105)
The Mets look like easy pickings for the Dodgers on Thursday night, but runs could be hard to come by for both clubs.
Hyun-Jin Ryu boasts a 5-0 record at home this year and a 1.22 ERA. Opponents are batting just .177 against him at Dodger Stadium this season. Third baseman Todd Frazier and right fielder Michael Conforto, two of the Mets' hottest hitters in May, have just two hits between them in 17 prior chances against Ryu.
The oft-ridiculed Jason Vargas has pitched to a 2.74 ERA in his last five starts and the Dodgers' offensive numbers sag somewhat when facing southpaws. They're 11th in batting average compared to their third overall mark.