Atlanta Braves (53-42) at Washington Nationals (48-49)
|Date & Time||Sunday July 22, 2018, 1:35 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Washington Nationals -220 / Atlanta Braves +200 --- Over/Under: 7.5
The Atlanta Braves and the Washington Nationals meet in the finale of their NL East division series from Nationals Park on Sunday.
The Atlanta Braves will look to complete the mini two game sweep after having Saturday’s game two postponed due to heavy rain. The Braves took the opener of the series on Friday by a final score of 8-5. Freddie Freeman led the Braves with three RBIs, going 2 for 5 with a double, while Ronald Acuna Jr., Ozzie Albies, Charlie Culberson, Nick Markakis and Johan Camargo each added an RBI to round out Atlanta’s scoring in the win. Acuna Jr. added a solo homer and a double, while Culberson hit a solo shot of his own and Albies and Camargo each added a double as well. Kurt Suzuki chipped in a two-bagger to cap off the Braves’ offense in the winning effort. Anibal Sanchez got the win to improve to 5-2 this season, giving up three runs on six hits while striking out eight over six innings of work. A.J. Minter closed out the 9th for his 5th save of the year. Mike Foltynewicz will start Sunday’s game and is 7-5 with a 2.66 ERA and 120 strikeouts this season. In his career, Foltynewicz is 4-3 with a 4.03 ERA and 44 strikeouts against Washington.
The Washington Nationals will look to salvage a split after dropping game one on Friday. Juan Soto led the Nats with two RBIs and a home run, while Trea Turner and Matt Adams each added a solo home run. Matt Wieters added a double while Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon, Daniel Murphy and starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg each had a base hit in the losing effort. Strasburg took the loss, falling to 6-7 this season after giving up six runs on eight hits while striking out six over 4.2 innings of work. Max Scherzer will start the finale and is 12-5 with a 2.41 ERA and 182 strikeouts this season. In his career, Scherzer is 8-6 with a 3.61 ERA and 123 strikeouts against Atlanta.
Atlanta is 4-1 in Foltynewicz’s last 5 starts and 19-7 in their last 26 division games while the over is 16-5 in their last 21 road games. Washington is 8-1 in Scherzer’s last 9 home starts against a team with a winning record and 10-21 in their last 31 games overall while the over is 4-0 in Scherzer’s last 4 division starts. The under is 7-1-1 in the last 9 meetings between these two teams.
We all know Scherzer is probably the ace of the Nationals’ rotation, and even though he’s won back-to-back starts, I’m not ready to throw out heavy juice just because he’s on the mound, as Washington just isn’t playing well right now. On the other hand, Foltynewicz has given up five runs in back-to-back starts. However, I think Foltynewicz can hang with the Nationals here so I’d either risk something small on the Braves or I’d leave this one alone.