Washington Nationals vs. Atlanta Braves Free Pick - 9/18/13
Atlanta Braves (89-62) at Washington Nationals (81-70)
MLB Baseball: Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at 7:05 pm (Nationals Park)
Alex Wood (L) (3-2) (3.857) vs. Pitcher Ross Ohlendorf (R) (4-0) (3.150)
The Line: Washington Nationals -107 / Atlanta Braves -103 --- Over/Under: 7 See the Latest Odds
TV: SportSouth, MASN2
The Atlanta Braves look to inch closer to wrapping up the NL East with a win at Washington.
Atlanta entered Tuesday with their magic number at four with a twin bill on the day and when the last out was recorded the magic number remained at four. A pair of losses gave the Nationals some life and frustrated the Braves who want to wrap things up as soon possible. The Braves dropped game one 6-5 with the relief pitching and defense coughing up a 5-3, 9th inning lead before dropping the night cap 4-0. The bottom line is the pitching hurt them in game one and the offense was the culprit in game two which hasn't been an issue for most of 2013 when both units have done reasonably well. Atlanta sends Alex Wood to the bump on Wednesday to cool off the surging Nationals. Wood looks to rebound from consecutive poor dtarts where he gave up eleven runs on 17 hits in seven frames.
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The Nationals are in desperate need of a season ending hot streak and are in the midst of one but can it continue. A sweep of their twin bill with the National League East leading Braves kept the Nats on track with wins in eleven of 12. This was the team we expected throughout 2013 and we haven't seen until the past three weeks so this essentially means this might have come a bit late. Washington was a rally machine in 2012 with plenty of pitching and hitting and we saw all three contribute in Tuesday's doubleheader sweep. At the end of the day, everything begins anew Wednesday with the postseason essentially in full bloom for this team. The Nationals turn to Ross Ohlendorf to keep their postseason hopes afloat versus the rival Braves. Ohlendorf comes in off a 6-1 victory over Philadelphia with the lone run given up over five innings.
I am really not a fan of Ohlendorf who has to hit his spots or he will get crushed. Having said that the Nationals have won with him and I'll back him but this might be a stretch in all honesty...