San Francisco Giants at Washington Nationals - 10/3/14 2014 NLDS Free Pick, Odds, Prediction
San Francisco Giants (88-74) at Washington Nationals (96-66)
MLB Baseball: Friday, October 3, 2014 at 3:07 pm (Nationals Park)
Pitcher TBA () (0-0) (0.00) vs. Stephen Strasburg (R) (14-11) (3.139)
The Line: Washington Nationals -173 / San Francisco Giants +163 --- Over/Under: 6.5 See the Latest Odds
TV: Fox Sports 1
The San Francisco Giants and Washington Nationals will play game 1 of the NLDS Friday afternoon at Nationals Park. The Nationals won the regular season series, 5-2.
USA TODAY Sports
The San Francisco Giants absolutely crushed the Pittsburgh Pirates in the wild card matchup Wednesday night to advance to this round, 8-0. While the Giants barely made the postseason, they’re no stranger to this time of the year as they’ve won the World Series the last two times they’ve qualified for a playoff spot and are 7-0 in their last seven elimination games. The Giants have scored eight or more runs in three of their last five games and Pablo Sandoval showed an unusual good eye at the plate in the wild card game, drawing a walk and picking up two hits in the victory. The San Francisco Giants are an experienced baseball team that knows what it takes to win this time of year and is going to be a tough out regardless. Taking the mound for the Giants will be Jake Peavy, who is 7-13 with a 3.73 ERA and has 158 strikeouts in 202.2 innings. In the postseason, Peavy is 0-3 with a 9.27 ERA and has 13 strikeouts in 22.1 innings.
The Washington Nationals haven’t had to play a meaningful baseball game for quite some time after they ran away with the NL East crown. The Nationals have shown to be a pitching machine as they have the best ERA in baseball at 3.03 and have three pitchers with more than 150 strikeouts, and five pitchers with double-digit wins. The Nationals have held their opponents to three or less runs in 15 of their last 18 games, and they’ve won 16 of their last 17 games when that’s the case. Offensively, the Nationals can be inconsistent, but Adam LaRoche, Ian Desmond and Anthony Rendon all have more than 20 homers and help produce timely runs. Stephen Strasburg is expected to get the start, and he's 14-11 with a 3.14 ERA and has 242 strikeouts in 215 innings. This will be the first time Strasburg has pitched in the postseason.
The Giants are 5-0 in their last 5 Divisional Playoff road games and 22-8 in their last 30 playoff games overall. The Nationals are 21-8 in their last 29 games following an off day and 37-16 in their last 53 home games. The Giants are 2-9 in the last 11 meetings in Washington.
Peavy has playoff experience and has an ERA of 1.44 in the month of September. And while Strasburg has never pitched in the playoffs, his ERA in September is 1.13. With that being the case, I suggest taking the under in this matchup.