The MLB is set up with a quieter night of baseball as eight games are set to go on Monday night. One of the games up on the board will be between the Washington Nationals and the St. Louis Cardinals. These two teams are in the thick of the playoff hunt, which should lead to a great game. This game will start at around 7:45 PM Eastern time.
The Nationals have earned the second-place spot in the NL East with a record of 82-66 throughout this season. Washington has struggled a bit throughout their last slate of games, losing seven of their last eleven games. The Nationals were able to win an impressive one against the Braves on Sunday and will look to win their second in a row.
St. Louis has gone 83-66 so far this season, which has them in the top spot of the NL Central. The Cardinals have a two game lead on the Chicago Cubs and a three game lead on the Milwaukee Brewers. St. Louis has gone 4-4 in their last eight games and will look to try and build up a winning streak with a big home win to open up this series.
The Nationals and the Cardinals are both currently sitting in playoff spots but will need to continue to finish the season strong if they want to stay there. Both teams have struggled a bit as of late, but I believe that they will pick up their play as we enter the final couple weeks of the season. This series is really important for both teams.
The first series between these two teams was in Washington between April 29 and May 2. The Nationals got the game started early with three runs in the second inning. St. Louis earned six runs in the top of the fifth inning to take the lead. Michael Wacha earned the win on the mound as he allowed four hits and three runs through five innings as the Cardinals won 6-3.
Washington had a strong start to the second game as well. Adam Eaton and Victor Robles hit back to back solo homers in the third inning. Kolten Wong had an RBI single to get the Cardinals on the board. Right after that, Harrison Bader had a two RBI single to help give St. Louis the lead. Adam Wainwright pitched six and a third innings and allowed six hits and two runs as the Cardinals won 3-2.
Marcell Ozuna and Jose Martinez had RBI’s in the top of the first inning to help St. Louis get the first lead for the first time in the series. Yadier Molina and Harrison Bader had RBI’s later in the game to help ice it for the Cardinals. Miles Mikolas allowed seven hits and one run through six innings as St. Louis took a 3-0 lead in the series with a 5-1 win.
The fourth and final game of the series was once again a good one. Kolten Wong got it started for St. Louis, but this time it was the Nationals who bounced back. Yan Gomes and Brian Dozier had RBI’s in the fourth inning. Stephen Strasburg got the win as he allowed six hits and one run through six and two thirds innings as Washington finished the series with a 2-1 win.
Anthony Rendon has had a really strong season so far. He has earned 167 hits, 33 homers and 118 RBI’s. Juan Soto has put up 148 hits, 34 home runs and 105 RBI’s. Adam Eaton has 146 hits, 14 home runs and 46 RBI’s. Trea Turner and Victor Robles both have over 120 hits and 10 home runs. Howie Kendrick, Brian Dozier, Kurt Suzuki, Matt Adams, and Yan Gomes all have double-digit homers this season as well.
Paul Goldschmidt has put up a stat line of 142 hits, 31 home runs and 89 RBI’s. Kolten Wong has earned 133 hits, 11 homers and 59 RBI’s. Paul DeJong has put up 129 hits, 26 home runs and 72 RBI’s, while Marcell Ozuna has 109 hits, 27 homers and 82 RBI’s. Dexter Fowler, Matt Carpenter, Jose Martinez, and Matt Wieters have double-digit home run totals this season too.
These two teams have put up strong hitting lineups throughout this season. I believe that these two lineups match up pretty well with each other. The Nationals have put up more runs than St. Louis, but the Cardinals have allowed less runs. The way that these teams match up should help lead to a pretty good game on Monday night.
Stephen Strasburg will be the starting pitcher for the Nationals on Monday night. Strasburg has gone 17-6 through 30 starts this season. In those starts, he has an ERA of 3.49 and a WHIP of 1.047. Strasburg’s last start came against the Minnesota Twins, where he allowed four hits and two runs through six innings as he earned another win.
Dakota Hudson will start on the mound for St. Louis in this matchup. Hudson has gone 15-7 throughout 30 games this season. He has posted an ERA of 3.38 and a 1.409 WHIP. Hudson’s last start came against the Colorado Rockies. He allowed four hits and two runs throughout six innings as he took a rough loss to end a five game winning streak he had going on.
These two pitchers have put up similar stat lines this season. Strasburg has a better record throughout his games played this season, but Hudson has a slightly better ERA. I expect both pitchers to post a strong night as they try and keep both hitting lineups at bay to get the leg up in the first game of this series.
I believe that Washington and St. Louis will pick up their intensity in this series as they both try to keep a stranglehold on their current playoff position. The Cardinals were able to win the first series on the road and I think they will start this series out with a win. St. Louis is coming off back to back losses to the Milwaukee Brewers and I think they will come out quick to look to bounce back.
BetOnline has the Nationals listed as a -135 against the money line. This implies that Washington will win this game around 57.5 percent of the time. I believe that with two even pitchers starting on the mound, the money line should be closer to even. This gives a lot of value to the Cardinals, which makes them the pick of the night.