Fade Cardinals vs. Solid Braves' Miller

Jeff Grant

Monday, May 5, 2014 12:39 PM GMT

Monday, May. 5, 2014 12:39 PM GMT

The St. Louis Cardinals have been very inconsistent at the plate to start the 2014 season, which provides the Atlanta Braves value in the series opener Monday night. Let’s take a closer look at the MLB betting odds for this National League showdown at Turner Field.

Inconsistency 
St. Louis hasn’t won back-to-back contests since putting together a four-game win streak from April 12-15, as they comes off a 5-4 victory over the Chicago Cubs as -129 road favorites on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, while going 'over' the total for the fifth time in six contests.

The Cardinals are hitting just .227 with runners in scoring position this season, which is far lower than their MLB-leading mark of .330 in 2013.

MLB handicappers will find that the club is 4-0 as road underdogs of +100 to +125 this season, with the 'under' going 2-0-2 in that situation.


Lack of offense
Atlanta has scored just 10 total runs over its current six-game losing streak, as it attempts to bounce back from a 4-1 defeat to the San Francisco Giants as -130 home favorites Sunday, while going 'under' the betting total for a third consecutive affair.

Braves' first baseman Freddie Freeman is batting .146 over his last 12 games, while starting catcher Evan Gattis is 2 for 21 over his last seven affairs.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the franchise has compiled a 29-32 record in the month of May.


Miller
Cardinals' starting pitcher Shelby Miller (3-2, 3.15 ERA) has won back-to-back efforts, including a 9-3 home victory over the Milwaukee Brewers last time out, as he allowed three runs and six hits over six innings of work.

The right-hander has served up seven home runs in 34.1 frames this season, but opposing batters are hitting just .234 against him.

In two career games versus the Braves, Miller has tallied a 1-1 record and 2.13 ERA.


Harang
Braves' starting pitcher Aaron Harang (3-2, 2.97 ERA) suffered a 9-3 road defeat to the Miami Marlins last time out, as he surrendered a season-high nine runs on 10 hits over 4.2 innings.

The right-hander is 1-1 with a 1.50 ERA in three home outings—issuing six walks and striking out 25 batters in 18 frames. In 25 lifetime appearances versus the Cardinals, Harang has gone 7-13 with a 4.37 ERA—losing his last four decisions since May 2009.


Prediction
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Braves as one of their MLB picks, as they’ve won five of their last six home games against the Cardinals.

[gameodds]3/263395/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

MLB Free Pick: Atlanta Braves -125

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