We have 12 games on the MLB slate for Monday, 10 of which will start at 7:05 ET or later. One of the later games on the schedule will take place in Southern California, where two of the National League’s top teams will tanle. The San Diego Padres will host the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night.
The Brewers, meanwhile, are atop the NL Central at 26-15 thus far. The Brew Crew won two of three from the Nationals in Milwaukee over the weekend, though Washington did take the series finale on Sunday afternoon.
Bovada oddsmakers have the Padres listed as slight home favorites in tonight’s clash. Nick Martinez will toe the rubber for the Pads, while Adrian Houser gets the call for the visitors.
The Brewers have made postseason appearances in each of the last four years, so first place is nothing new to them. That said, Milwaukee has won only one playoff series in that span, which came back in 2018. Milwaukee cruised to an NL Central division title last season, only to fall in upset fashion to the eventual World Series champion Atlanta Braves in the Division Series.
Milwaukee has four legitimate All-Star-caliber starting pitchers. Corbin Burnes is the defending NL Cy Young winner, while Brandon Woodruff, Eric Lauer, and Freddy Peralta would all be top-of-the-rotation starters for most other teams. However, the fifth starting spot is in flux. Adrian Houser is holding it down for now, but he hasn’t gotten off to the best of starts.
Houser does have a solid 3.22 ERA through his first seven starts of the year, but his overall numbers are underwhelming. Houser is 3-4 overall, and his walk rate is north of 10 percent for the second consecutive season. Houser is more of a groundball pitcher than a strikeout pitcher, but his 48.1 percent groundball rate so far this year is the lowest of his major-league career.
Houser owns a career 61.7 percent groundball rate against right-handed hitters, which should help him contain the likes of Manny Machado, Luke Voit, and Wil Myers in this one.
San Diego Padres
The Padres keep winning games despite a middling run differential. San Diego has only outscored their opponents by 29 runs on the year, yet they’re an impressive 13 games over the .500 mark. The Dodgers, by comparison, are only a half-game ahead of the Padres despite a vastly superior plus-88 run differential so far in 2022.
The Pads will also hit a soft spot in their rotation tonight with Nick Martinez set to draw the start.
Martinez is 2-2 with a 3.89 ERA this season through seven games, including six starts. His 25 percent strikeout rate is well north of his career MLB average of just 13.9 percent. Martinez is undoubtedly better than he was earlier in his career, but it’s worth wondering whether he can continue to miss bats at such a healthy clip.
Control has also been a problem. Martinez has walked 10.4 percent of the hitters he’s faced, which means he’s been dealing with a steady stream of traffic on the basepaths.
In spite of that, Martinez has done a fine job of stranding runners. Nearly 83 percent of those that have reached against Martinez failed to come around to score. This means Martinez has been a bit lucky in that regard, which signals regression could be on the way.
Milwaukee Brewers at San Diego Padres MLB Game Pick
The Brewers are an impressive 14-6 so far this season at home, but they haven’t enjoyed quite as much success on the road. Milwaukee is 12-9 away from home, while San Diego is off to a fair 10-7 start at Petco Park.
These two teams are generally evenly-matched, which is why I like the value on Milwaukee to take this one on the road. I have a lot more faith in Houser to turn things around, while I’ll have to see more of Martinez in order to buy what he’s selling. The Brewers’ -102 moneyline odds really stand out in this one, so take Milwaukee to claim the series opener.
Milwaukee Brewers vs. San Diego Padres Betting Recap
- Moneyline: Brewers -102, Padres -108
- Runline: Brewers +1.5 (-205), Padres -1.5 (+175)
- Over/Under: Over 8 runs (-110), Under 8 runs (-110)
- Pick: Brewers (-102)