We notched an easy win last night with Stephen Strasburg pitching a solid ball game and letting the Nationals offense do their thing against the New York Mets. We will talk a little more about those two teams later in the column as today’s free pick is going right back to the well again tonight.
In the meantime, things are getting really fun in Houston. The Astros are now riding a seven game winning streak and have a three and a half game lead in the stacked AL West. It will be worth watching to see if this team is a legit contender ahead of schedule or if this is just a nice infusion of optimism into a city and team that desperately need it. Defensively, they are spectacular – think Kansas City Royals-like, and their young pitching is excellent, especially Dallas Kuechel… but are they really ready to take down the Angels (and A’s and Mariners)? It’ll be worth keeping an eye on, because winning streaks like these can really reset the general lines on a team – if there is a backslide coming it could be a nice potential profit opportunity (like the Mets have been this week).
Ok, let’s start the weekend off with a MLB winner and start a little winning streak.
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Today’s Free Pick:
Washington Nationals at New York Mets (Total: 6)
Max Scherzer vs. Matt Harvey
This pitching matchup leaps of the page and will be the glamour matchup of the night in MLB. I mean Cy Young winning Max Scherzer versus the Dark Knight?!? How can you pass that up.
But let me caution quickly on Matt Harvey. Yes, he is very good. But I think we might be a getting a bit of a “Big Game James” Shield-like situation, where the nickname is so good we slightly overlook the actual numbers. Harvey is 4-0, but his ERA is over three, and is 3.92 in his last three starts. He has been good. Very good. But not even close to Cy Young good. He has just gotten awesome run support. I don’t think he will tonight.
Also, the Nats are mashing right now. They’ve scored 32 runs in their last four games and I expect them to score some runs tonight. Meanwhile, the Mets have hit a little regression, but they still have scored at least three runs in eight of ten games and haven’t been shutout once. I like them to scratch a run or two at least.
It all makes the super-low total of just 6 runs an easy mark. I think we are looking at a 5-3 type game, despite all the hoopla over the pitching matchup. It’ll be an entertaining game to watch, but don’t expect either guy to string up seven or eight zeroes tonight.