Cappers Pick Braves -130 Over Phillies in Series Opener

Jeff Grant

Monday, April 14, 2014 12:07 PM GMT

The Atlanta Braves have one of the best bullpens in baseball, which provides them a major edge against the Philadelphia Phillies in the opener of a three-game series Monday night. Is this edge reflected in the MLB odds?

Let’s take a closer look at the MLB betting odds for this National League East matchup at Citizens Bank Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

[gameodds]3/261864/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

How sweep it is
Atlanta hits the road after finishing off a three-game sweep of the Washington Nationals over the weekend, including a 10-2 blowout victory as +121 underdogs Sunday, while going OVER the betting total for the fourth consecutive affair. 

The Braves are currently playing a stretch of 19 straight games versus NL East opponents, which is good news for a franchise that led the Senior Circuit with 47 intra-division wins. 

Over the last two-plus seasons, the club is 20-20 as a road favorite of -125 to -150, with the UNDER going 21-17-2 in that situation.

Which books offer the best MLB Odds pricing?

Utley is back
Philadelphia has split its first 12 games of the 2014 campaign, but it comes off its first series sweep of the season, which was capped off by a 4-3 victory over the Miami Marlins as -118 home favorites Sunday.

The Phillies are legitimate contenders to win the division if second baseman Chase Utley remains in good health, as he enters the third week of the season hitting .500 with three home runs and 10 RBIs. 

MLB handicappers will find that the squad is 3-7 in its last 10 home games dating back to last season.

 

Santana
Braves starting pitcher Ervin Santana (1-0, 0.00 ERA) will make his second career appearance as a member of the franchise, as he picked up a 4-3 home victory over the New York Mets last Wednesday—surrendering just three hits over eight shutout innings.

The right-hander recorded a 7-1 victory over the Phillies in his only outing against them on June 20, 2008. 

In 38 career efforts in April, Santana has compiled a 15-14 record and 3.99 ERA.

 

Hernandez
Phillies starting pitcher Roberto Hernandez (1-0, 4.35 ERA) didn’t earn a decision in a 9-4 home defeat to the Milwaukee Brewers last time out, as he gave up four runs (three earned) and seven hits over five frames.

The right-hander won his only previous outing versus the Braves on June 17, 2007—surrendering two earned runs over seven innings of work. 

In 36 lifetime appearances in April, Hernandez has tallied a losing 14-15 record and 4.75 ERA.

 

Prediction
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Braves with their MLB picks tonight, as the Phillies are 16-24 as home underdogs of +100 to +125 since the start of the 2012 season. 

MLB Pick:  Atlanta Braves -130