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Braves vs. Nationals Pick MLB – August 5th

I’m not going to necessarily say that we suffered a bad beat yesterday, because it wasn’t bad enough to put in that category, but it was still painful nevertheless. Wild pitches, passed balls, errant outfield play summed up our UNDER pick yesterday in the Royals vs. Mets game. And even after all of those shenanigans, the bet only lost by half a point. The Royals went for theatrics in the bottom of the 8th yesterday in the outfield, which resulted in the left fielder diving for the ball instead of letting the centerfielder make the easy running catch in shallow centerfield. Of course the Mets got a cheap run off of this to make a 6-2 game, thus, sinking the 7.5 wager.

With another week in Major League Baseball in the books, I am still playing with house money, and it should stay that long for a very long time. Let’s start the week off with a winner and take some more cash from the book.

Free MLB Pick:

Atlanta Braves +110 at Washington Nationals -130 (Total: 7)

Mike Minor (11-5, 2.75 ERA) vs. Stephen Strasburg (5-9, 3.04 ERA)

While most everyone knows who Stephen Strasburg is, I don’t think too many people are aware of Mike Minor. They should, though. In fact, Minor has the more impressive numbers. Minor’s W/L record has benefited from playing behind a much more rounded lineup, but his ERA knocks Strasburg off as well. The Braves have been on fire lately, and Minor has played a large role in making that happen. They have now won ten straight games after knocking the Philadelphia Phillies off last night, and are on pace to win as many home games as the 1999 Yankees.

They’ll have an excellent chance to earn their eleventh straight considering how hot Minor has been. In his last three starts he possessed an excellent ERA of 1.23 and staggering 0.59 WHIP and .167 OBP. Out of all the writeups I have done this season, I think this is the hottest pitcher I have found in a three game stretch. Road starts haven’t been a problem for Minor, as his numbers sit at an ERA of 2.47 with a 1.16 WHIP.

Strasburg hasn’t hit a slump this season by any means, but he has unfortunately been a part of an uninspired, disappointing ball club. All you need to do is look at his 5-9 record and 3.04 ERA to realize it hasn’t been his fault. Other than a couple uncharacteristic starts against the Marlins and Tigers, Strasburg has been as solid as they come. Both of those starts came on the road, where he is typically much worse. Home is a completely different story as his ERA dips to 1.68. Strasburg, like Minor, doesn’t put many runners on the base pads, as his home OBP of .248 shows.

This matchup has all the makings of many 1-2-3 innings. Both pitchers are stubborn with regards to allowing base runners, so this should be a low final score. I think it’ll take a collapse from Strasburg to push this one over the total. He has never gotten hit at home this season, and I don’t see it happening Monday night. The side is a difficult pick for me here, as I think either team could win it by 1 or 2, but I do like the under.

Free Pick: UNDER 7