With the Atlanta Braves already starting to run away with the N.L. East (Miami’s in first place at 2-1, but c’mon…), the N.Y. Mets and Washington Nationals need to win games now if they want to keep their postseason dreams alive. The Braves have seven wins, which is equal to what the Mets and Nationals have combined, as of this writing.
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Mets’ Pitching Woes, Moving Forward Without Yoenis Cespedes
The Mets’ pitching staff ranks near the bottom of MLB in several major statistical categories so far this season. They have a combined 5.52 team ERA, while giving up 14 home runs. Opponents are hitting a solid .262 against them. Largely for these reasons, New York has lost five games out of their last six heading into this matchup with Washington at Nationals Park.
The game will be aired on ESPN at 7:00pm. We have all the current MLB betting odds available for you, just visit our sportsbook.
New York’s probable starter is LHP Steven Matz, who’s held his own in his first two starts this season. He has an 0-1 record with a 3.18 ERA over 11.1 innings versus the Braves and Red Sox, striking out 10 batters along the way. Matz has been forced into the #2 rotation spot for the Mets following injuries to ace SP Noah Syndergaard and SP Marcus Stroman.
The Mets’ bats have been swinging pretty well, ranked 4th in the league with a .261 team average. 2B Robinson Cano (.375) and LF J.D. Davis (.310) have been productive. However, the Mets aren’t scoring enough runs to offset their abyssmal pitching. They are ranked 18th in runs scored, with 38.
They will also now be without the services of OF Yoenis Cespedes, who has decided to opt out of the remainder of the season. In the wake of this news, New York has made a trade with the San Francisco Giants to obtain veteran OF Billy Hamilton. Hamilton adds speed to the basepaths and a stellar defensive presence to the Mets’ lineup.
Nationals Gaining Momentum Behind Strong SPs, Mediocre Bats
Washington finally won its first series of the year, beating the Toronto Blue Jays in a two-game-set to warm up Nationals Park for the Mets arrival. The pitching staff boasts a 2.69 team ERA and has held opponents to a flimsy .202 batting average so far this season.
Lefty SP Patrick Corbin will look to continue that trend against a frustrated N.Y. Mets team. Corbin fared well against another team from N.Y. on July 26th, striking out eight Yankees and giving up one run on two hits over 6.1 innings, but the bullpen blew the lead and the Nats lost the game.
New addition 2B Starlin Castro is hitting .360 and 3B Carter Kieboom hits great when given the chance (.444). But the team is only batting .244 as a whole, and they aren’t getting many runs across the plate. Washington is tied with Milwaukee for 26th in the league in runs scored, with only 24.
If SS Trea Turner and DH Howie Kendrick can get on track, the Nats will likely be churning enough runs to support their strong pitching staff. We certainly can’t count them out yet. A short homestand against the Mets might be just what the Nationals need to get on a roll.
Mets vs Nationals Rivalry, Interesting Stats & Betting Info
In 2019, the Mets won the season series vs the Nationals 12-7. New York even managed to win the majority of the games at Nationals Park last year. Washington has struggled a bit against N.Y. the last couple of seasons.
That being said, the reigning World Series champions are clearly the better team, in my opinion. Factor in that Washington is undefeated in their last five N.L. East matchups and has a record of 7-1 on Tuesdays in their last eight, and it adds up to a Nationals victory at home on August 4th. Patrick Corbin will outduel Steven Matz, and the Nats will climb up the standings.
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