Season Results: After going 3-0 on Wednesday, I hit all three of my selections again on Thursday night. My over pick in Game 1 of the Mets-Phillies game hit by the fifth inning as New York covered the total on its own with 10 runs in the top of the frame. The Nationals-Cardinals over also won if you got the number at 8.5 (some books bumped the total up to 9 before first pitch) and the Diamondbacks won easily against the Padres as a -149 favorite. That runs my MLB record to 14-5 since starting this column.
Onto Friday’s plays…
911 Milwaukee Brewers at 912 St. Louis Cardinals, 7:15 p.m. CT
I liked the over in last night’s Nationals-Cards matchup but I’m going the other way tonight. The Cards tend to struggle against pitchers that they haven’t seen before and they’ve never faced Freddy Peralta. The Cards’ lineup is also mostly right-handed and Peralta owns a 35% strikeout rate versus righties this season. On the other side, Jack Flaherty faces a projected Milwaukee lineup that has an average strikeout rate of 26% against right-handed pitching. I’m not expecting a lot of traffic on the basepaths tonight with the profiles of these pitchers and thus, I see the game being low-scoring.
Prediction: Brewers/Cardinals under 8
905 Chicago Cubs at 906 Pittsburgh Pirates, 6:05 p.m. CT
Cole Hamels has pitched well since joining the Cubs. He owns an above-average strikeout rate and an average groundball rate but he draws a start in pitcher-friendly PNC Park against a Pirates team that could do nothing against Jon Lester last night. (Lester has been a disaster for a month.) On the other side, Trevor Williams is a flyball pitcher and draws a difficult matchup against Chicago’s offense but these two teams combined for just a single run last night so I don’t expect an offensive explosion tonight. The under is 12-3-1 in Williams’ last 16 starts against the rest of the National League Central and si 7-2 in the Cubs’ last nine games.
Prediction: Cubs/Pirates under 8
903 Miami Marlins at 904 Washington Nationals, 6:05 p.m. CT
While they lost the series, the Nationals showed some life offensively on Thursday night against the Cards and draw an exploitable matchup against Dan Straily tonight. He’s allowed a ton of hard contact to both left and right-handed hitters and is a fly-ball pitcher that tends to give up the long ball. The majority of the Nationals’ lineup has crushed right-handed pitching this season. I realize Max Scherzer is pitching tonight for the Nationals but the over is 4-0 in his last four outings against Miami and is 5-1-1 in his last seven outings at home versus the Fish.
Prediction: Marlins/Nationals over 8
MLB: 14-5 (+850.00)
*Based on projected $100.00 wagers