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Houston Astros vs. Cincinnati Reds Free Pick - 9/16/13

Cincinnati Reds (83-66) at Houston Astros (51-97)

MLB Baseball: Monday, September 16, 2013 at 8:10 pm (Minute Maid Park)

Johnny Cueto (R) (4-2) (3.330) vs. Erik Bedard (L) (3-9) (4.653)

The Line: Houston Astros- TBD / Cincinnati Reds- TBD --- Over/Under: TBD See the Latest Odds

TV: FS-Ohio, CSN-Houston

The Cincinnati Reds take their playoff drive to the road where they take on the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park.

Cincinnati is trying to keep their National League Central title hopes alive but if they fall short by one game they wil look back on Sunday's 6-5 defeat at Miller Park. The Reds blew a 5-1 lead with five runs given up over the final three frames. Starter Bronson Arroyo gave up two runs on three hits through six innings before the bull pen suffered a melt down with four straight relievers allowing a single run each. The offense did their damage on an eight hit, five walk attack that rceived a solo homer and run scoring single off the bat of Todd Frazier. Johnny Cueto is scheduled to return from the disabled list for the third time in 2013. Cueto has been a work horse in the Cincinnati rotation but has made only nine starts on the season thus far.

Houston Astros vs. Cincinnati Reds Free Pick - 9/16/13

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Even though Houston has played around .500 baseball over the past few weeks I would say this is about as well as this team can play. The Astros had been enjoying some much welcomed offense in winning four straight before a 2-1 defeat to visiting saddled the team with consecutive losses. The offense was stymied Sunday which spoiled a strong performance on the mound from Paul Clemens who allowed both runs on six hits and issued a free pass over seven innings pitched. The Houston attack consisted of seven hits and and a single base on balls that saw Mark Krauss slug his 4th long ball in the second inning. The Astros give Erik Bedard another shot in the rotation when he faces the Reds on Monday. Bedard has been relagated to the bull pen where he has appeared four times with five runs allowed.

I would generally be all over Cueto but he hasn't been healthy and we don't know how deep he will go in to the game or if he is on a pitch count. The line hasn't been released yet so please check back.

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