MLB Predictions For Today: Mets Favorites At Home Versus Braves
The Mets were emphatic favorites at home versus the Braves last night with Jacob deGrom on the hill. As is the case in many of deGrom’s starts, the Mets did not provide the run support requisite to bring their ace a victory — despite his best efforts. Tonight, the Mets look to right the ship and get one back from the Braves. Here is a sports betting breakdown of tonight’s NL East matchup.
Following an extra-inning loss last night, Zack Wheeler gets the nod for the Mets as a slight -110 favorite. The Braves will send Max Fried (-104) to the hill looking to win their last series in Citi Field. FanDuel Sportsbook pegs the game on the lower-scoring side at the time of this writing with an O/U set at 8 runs.
MLB Predictions for Today — Mets (-110) vs. Braves (-104), Over/Under 8 Runs
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Stat of the Night
Jacob deGrom had himself a night against the Braves on Friday. Pitching seven innings, deGrom struck out 13 batters and scored the only Met run with a solo home run. At the time, the home run deadlocked the game at 1-1 prior to the Braves winning in extra innings.
Per MLBStats on Twitter, deGrom is the first pitcher to strike out 13+ batters and hit a home run twice in the same season.
Temperature Meter – Mets Heat Up For Wild Card
Since the trade deadline, the Mets propelled themselves into contention for a playoff berth. At the deadline, the Mets found themselves behind six teams for one of the two Wild Card spots in the National League.
After a strong few weeks, the Mets find themselves with a better-than-legitimate chance to make the playoffs. Despite a loss last night, the Mets are 7-2 over their last nine games, resting two games behind the Cubs for the second Wild Card spot. The Nationals, with three games left versus the Mets, are four games ahead of their division rival for the first Wild Card spot. Not that the Braves are not motivated, but the Mets are playing must-win baseball every day for the remainder of the season.
Let’s take a look at tonight’s projected lineups per RotoGrinders PlateIQ.
The visiting Braves are an imposing offense regardless of the platoon but flash plenty of upside versus right-handed pitching. For the projected starting lineup, the Braves boast a team .214 ISO and .364 wOBA — this with Adeiny Hechavarria dragging the line down with a .143 ISO and .274 wOBA against righties. Hechavarria, aside from the pitcher spot, is the only Brave to bring a wOBA less than .300 to the plate, tonight.
This iteration of the Braves lineup can swing and miss versus righties with a team 22.5 K% buoyed by Ronald Acuna (24.6%), Hechavarria (24.8%), and Tyler Flowers (33.5%). That said, produce plenty of base runners with a 10.5 BB% and collectively hit the ball very hard (43.3%).
The Mets, facing a southpaw in Max Fried, will send at least six righties to the plate this evening. A team ISO .222 stems from a strong top of the order with Joe Panik (.095) and Juan Lagares (.073) sinking the ship from the bottom of the order. Panik (9.3%) won’t strike out much versus lefties but Pete Alonso (32.6%), Michael Conforto (27.0%), and Juan Lagares (32.8%) contribute enough swing-and-misses to give the Mets a 20.3 K% versus lefties.
Alonso brings plenty of power (.385 ISO) while Wilson Ramos has been extremely effective against lefties with his .414 wOBA and paltry 10.1 K%. The top six hitters for the Mets represent a tough task for lefties. Max Fried will be rewarded with a punchless bottom of the lineup if he can overcome the stalwart top of the order.
Max Fried continues to show as a burgeoning talent for the Atlanta Braves. Prior to August, Fried pitched to a 4.20 ERA despite a favorable 3.51 xFIP. Near a strikeout per inning, Fried pitched well but struggled with the occasional ball leaving the yard (1.24 HR/9). The home run issue could be linked to his lofty 21.4 HR/FB% during this stretch.
Onto August, where Fried’s fortune has been better and the surface numbers are improved. Through four starts in August, Fried boasts a 2.20 ERA with a 3.30 xFIP. So, luck has been on his side but the xFIP indicates he is still pitching well. The HR/FB% is way down to 6.7% and as a result, Fried did not yield a home run until his last start against the Dodgers. The strikeouts are up in August with his 10.48 xFIP. Fried just saw the Mets on August 13th — striking out four through six innings while only giving up one earned run in the Braves victory.
Consequently, Zack Wheeler pitched opposite Max Fried in the August 13th matchup and struggled. Wheeler gave up 12 hits over five innings — allowing five earned runs and getting tagged with a loss. Prior to the Braves games, Wheeler strung together a few good starts — shutting down both the Marlins and White Sox during that span on his way to three consecutive victories. Of course, the quality of those lineups does not even remotely approach that of the Braves.
Wheeler’s 4.40 ERA shows room for some positive regression when you consider his 3.93 xFIP. Speaking of regression, in the previous Braves start, Wheeler had the misfortune of finishing with a .500 BABIP — certainly an indicator of poor fortune when you consider Zack only finished with a .500 BABIP or worse one other time this season (versus the Phillies).
The MLB Pick — Under 8 Runs (-106) (use our FanDuel promo code to get these odds)
Despite his recent outing against the Braves, Zack Wheeler is more than capable of holding this version of the Braves lineup at bay. Max Fried is recently rolling for the Braves and will see a weaker lineup (no Jeff McNeil) than the version he shut down a couple of weeks ago. Last night’s contest saw two pitchers completely stifle opposing lineups for seven innings.
Sure, Jacob deGrom is not on the hill, but I do not see a clear path to an offensive explosion this evening. Barring a bad BABIP night, these lineups should not turn over that much with two solid pitching options on the hill. For that reason, give me the Under 8 Runs (-106) at FanDuel Sportsbook.
Check back tomorrow for a Sunday Night Baseball prediction.
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