A couple of playoff contenders collide on Tuesday’s baseball betting card when the Milwaukee Brewers travel to the Sunshine State for an interleague battle with the Tampa Bay Rays.
Milwaukee Brewers vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Tuesday, June 28, 2022 – 07:10 PM EDT at Tropicana Field
Mere percentage points separate the Milwaukee Brewers and Tampa Bay Rays, and yet the two clubs could hardly be any different in terms of their current positions in respective division standings as they get set for a short series down in St. Petersburg.
Milwaukee is sending Brandon Woodruff (5-3, 4.74) to the bump for the series opener. Tampa Bay has yet to officially name a starter, though it appears Shane Baz (0-1, 4.15) will pitch the bulk of the early innings. BMR’s live MLB odds board shows the Rays very slight favorites with 7 for the total.
Brewers vs. Bay Rays Trends
As far as interleague rivalries go, the one between the Brewers and Rays is probably down near the bottom of the barrel as far as attracting national interest, and it’s definitely one of the least-played NL-AL matchups with the clubs meeting for just the 13th time in series history.
- The Rays own a 7-5 advantage in the series.
- This is the first clash between the two sides since they met at Tropicana Field in August 2017 when the Brewers won two of three contests.
- All three of the 2017 matches stopped short of the totals, as did the entire series at Tropicana Field in 2014.
- Only three matchups have taken place in Milwaukee (2011), and the teams will meet at American Family Field for another short 2-game set in August.
Brewers' Starter: Brandon Woodruff
This will be Woodruff’s first appearance on a major league mound since late May. The beefy right-hander was originally sidelined by an ankle he injured in a May 27th start at St. Louis. While recovering from that injury, Woodruff was diagnosed with Raynaud's syndrome which is a circulation issue in the fingers.
Woodruff made a couple of rehab starts, the first at Triple-A Nashville and then another last week at Milwaukee’s High-A club in Grand Chute, Wisconsin where he allowed one run and struck out seven during a 5-inning, 74-pitch effort.
The former Mississippi State star faced the Rays once before, that outing serving as his major league debut in 2017. Woodruff made a great first impression by hurling shutout baseball into the seventh for the win as a +140 underdog on the MLB odds. He is 1-3 with an 8.14 ERA in five road starts.
Rays' Starter: Shane Baz
There is every reason to believe that if Baz is used on Tuesday, it will be in a starting role. That is, at least, the only role the young Texan has been used at the major league level as well as the role he was filling in the minors before being called up.
Baz actually started the season on the injured list with elbow trouble. He was brilliant in four minor league starts at Triple-A Durham as he worked his way back. A fastball consistently in the upper-90s on the radar gun, Baz also has a quality slider to keep hitters off-balance.
None of that has translated into wins, however, at least so far this season. All three of his starts have gone into Tampa Bay’s loss column, the latest last Wednesday at home against the Yankees. Baz worked into the fifth allowing just one run in the Rays’ 5-4 setback as +140 underdogs with BMR's top-rated books and betting sites.
The return of Woodruff is obviously a plus for the Brewers. They are still playing without outfielder Hunter Renfroe (calf) and pitcher Aaron Ashby (forearm). Both are being penciled in for returns in mid-July.
Tampa Bay Rays
Tampa Bay is playing a short in the outfield with Manuel Margot (knee) and Kevin Kiermaier (hip) out. Kiermaier could return soon while Margot could be out the next two months. The Rays also recently lost reliever Andrew Kittredge to season-ending Tommy John surgery.
Tuesday’s MLB Best Bet
It has to be frustrating for the Rays to know they would be a half-game out of the lead in both of the Central divisions, but they’re only good enough for fourth place in the AL East. Milwaukee, meanwhile, has the Cardinals nipping at their heels in the NL Central race.
Tampa Bay is in a good groove after sweeping the Pirates over the weekend, and has the most home wins in the majors. I’m liking the young hurler with my baseball pick as Baz helps his team to a 4-3 triumph.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.