Mets vs. Nationals MLB Pick – September 21st

An uninspiring performance by the Washington Nationals last night, as they had to make a comeback to have a chance against the Mets. All it did was delay the inevitable. The Mets scored in extras to earn a 5-4 win over the Nats. They helped the Nationals do one thing, dig their hole even deeper. That hole looks pretty impossible to get out of at this point, as we get closer to the final week of the regular season.

They wasted a Max Scherzer start last night, and frankly wasted an entire season. They will look for some motivation tonight to play the Mets on Friday. The Mets might not be playing in October, at least they’re out there playing with some pride, not like the underachieving Nationals.

There is a big game coming up at Citi Field, as David Wright will get to say goodbye in one last game. It has nothing to do with the postseason, but it’s a night for fans to look back at better days. In a sense, it’s been a waste of a year for the Mets as well. If you take a look at their rotation, it’s hard to fathom how they aren’t at least competing to get into the postseason as a wildcard.

All you need to do for an answer is look at the record of Jacob deGrom. Therein lies the problem for the Mets’ season in 2018. Most of the time baseball comes down to pitching, and if that’s all it was, the Mets would be a postseason team. However, that doesn’t happen without solid run support and deGrom and other pitchers in the rotation have struggled at times to get help from the offense. It’s certainly picked up to an average rate in the second-half, though. But by the end of the first-half, they were already way too behind the 8-ball. The Nationals will get a look at deGrom this evening, while Joe Ross gets his second start back since coming off the DL. Head below for our free Mets vs. Nationals pick.

N.Y. Mets vs. Washington Nationals Pick

Jacob deGrom (8-9, 1.78 ERA) vs. Joe Ross (0-0, 3.60 ERA)

Joe Ross has made one unofficial start and an official start in 2018. He was pitching well against the Cubs before that game was cancelled due to weather. Ross didn’t allow a run, but those numbers get wiped clean as it wasn’t an official contest. It ended up being a warmup I suppose for Ross, who went out the next time and looked sharp against the Cubs. He allowed 4 hits and 2 runs across 5 innings of work. Before getting called up, Ross posted an ERA of 3.09 in Syracuse with their Triple-A club.

That was vs a pretty good Cubs’ offense, so kudos to him for coming fresh off the DL without making an outing this season and looking sharp against the Cubs. In his first couple of seasons, he pitched well for the Nationals, posting an ERA of 3.64 and 3.43 in 2015 and 2016.

His numbers tailed off last season, but he finished the year out strong before needing Tommy John surgery. He didn’t allow more than 2 runs in four of his last five starts. Two of those starts came against the Mets, as he gave up 2 runs in each. With the best pitcher in baseball on the other side tonight, Ross may have to be better than good.

deGrom enters with an ERA of 1.78 and 0.95 WHIP. He is on pace to win the Cy Young, but we’ll see how important his lack of wins are to voters. Despite an ERA of 1.78, the guy has a record below .500 at 8-9. Even on a team with a bad offense, his record should look better than that. The Mets have averaged just 2.4 runs in his last five outings, so that just goes to show you what he’s working with on his team. The Nationals are hitting .188 against deGrom in 199 at-bats. This contest should ultimately fall UNDER the total.

The Bet: UNDER 8 (-110)

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Kyle E / Author

Kyle is a veteran of The Sports Geek and has spent nearly a decade providing accurate sports picks and writeups here. He has been a sports handicapper for 10+ years and started sharing his picks and thoughts in 2011 at The Sports Geek. His expertise spans across multiple sports, including the NFL, NCAAF, MLB, and the NHL. Prior to writing for The Sports Geek, Kyle was a fantasy football expert, who ultimately parlayed it into a successful sports betting career. You can find his picks daily at The Sports Geek.