Washington Nationals vs. Minnesota Twins - 4/23/16 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Minnesota Twins (5-12) at Washington Nationals (12-4)
MLB Baseball: Saturday, April 23, 2016 at 1:05 pm (Nationals Park)
P Hughes (1-2) (4.42) vs. T Roark (1-2) (3.71)
The Line: Washington Nationals -146 / Minnesota Twins +136 --- Over/Under: 8 See the Latest Odds
TV: MASN, FSN
At Nationals Park on Saturday, the MLB is bringing us an interesting matchup between the Minnesota Twins and the Washington Nationals.
This is game two in the weekend series. During Friday’s game one, Washington scored four times in the first inning, three times in the third, and never looked back on the way to an 8-4 victory.
USA TODAY Sports
On Saturday, the Twins are set to be wheeling out right-hander Phil Hughes. Over three starts this season, Hughes has come up with a 4.42 ERA with a 1.15 WHIP across 18.1 innings. Back on Monday in his last start, Hughes was credited for a complete game after a rainout victory in six innings against the Brewers. Hughes allowed four runs (three earned) in that one.
The Twins have a few noteworthy names at the plate, but haven’t been able to get things going as a collective quite yet. Joe Mauer leads the way on 20 hits with six runs, while Eduardo Escobar isn’t far behind with 16 hits and six runs. Brian Dozier has 12 hits with six runs, but is hitting just .188 thus far
Now let’s check out the Nationals, who will be utilizing right-hander Tanner Roark in the Saturday game. Roark has had his ups and downs in 2016 over three starts, compiling a 3.71 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP in 17 innings. In his most recent appearance on Monday, Roark allowed five runs (four earned) in a loss to the Marlins.
The Washington batting order boasts a nice assortment of power and familiar faces. Daniel Murphy has been a revelation, with 23 hits, nine runs and nine RBI. Bryce Harper, meanwhile, is as good as ever with 13 runs, eight homers and 22 RBI. Harper was 0-for-4 on Friday. Jason Werth has struggled with consistency (.200 BA) but has eight RBI to his credit.
The Twins are just 1-5 in their last six game twos of a series, but they’re 7-0 in Hughes’ last seven interleague starts.
As for the Nationals, they’re 6-0 in their last six game twos of a series, and 5-0 in their last five Saturday games.
I really can’t find too many reasons to pick against Washington here, especially given Hughes’ “blah” performances this year and the deadly Nationals bats. Expect Harper and the gang to hang a few more runs on the board in this one.