MLB Free Pick: Break Out the Brooms as Nationals Sweep Braves

Willie Bee

Thursday, September 21, 2017 12:43 PM UTC

Thursday, Sep. 21, 2017 12:43 PM UTC

With two wins to start their final road trip of the year, the Nationals are once again favored on the MLB odds when they end the first leg of the journey in Atlanta.

Season: 78-80-4 (+1.60)

The road trip through the dregs of the NL East has started well for the Washington Nationals with two wins over the Atlanta Braves. They’ll go for a clean sweep tonight at the Braves’ new park, Tanner Roark (13-9, 4.43) set to face RA Dickey (9-10, 4.41) and the Nationals favored around -135 with a 9 run total that leans to the ‘over.’

Max Scherzer and Ryan Zimmerman starred in Washington’s 4-2 win Tuesday, and a big eighth inning propelled the Nationals to a 7-3 decision last night in a game Bookmaker closed the visitors on a -161 money line. The teams have traded beating each other on their home diamonds, the Nats 6-2 in Atlanta and Braves 6-4 in Washington over the course of the 2017 fixture, the contests at SunTrust 3-5 O/U heading into this evening’s finale.


Home Runs Have Been A Problem For Dickey At Home

Roark has strung together four consecutive quality starts, and the Nationals are 4-1 his last five trips to the mound. The most recent dubya came a week ago in DC against the Braves, the former Fighting Illini star throwing six innings of two run baseball to pick up the cash as -130 chalk on the MLB odds. Atlanta had roughed him up a couple of times earlier this year, one of those appearances in long relief and tonight is his first time to climb the bump at SunTrust.

Dickey is making his fifth start of the campaign against the Nats, and facing his fifth different starting pitcher. Atlanta has won just one of the previous four, Dickey’s 5.92 ERA in those games a big contributing factor. The veteran has been prone to the home run ball when pitching at home, 18 of his knucklers going into the outfield bleachers in those 102 innings. Zimmerman (.357, 4 HR) and Werth (.448, 2HR) have been toughest outs in Washington’s lineup.


Umpire Notes, Mother Nature & A Free Pick

Nic Lentz, a baby by MLB umpire standards at 28, has the plate for the series finale. It’s his first time to call balls and strikes at Atlanta’s SunTrust Park, and the Michigan native owns a 10-12-2 O/U/P record in the totals column. Home ‘underdogs’ have cashed four out of 10 times Lentz is behind the mask.

Cloudy, temps in the low-80s and not enough wind worth mentioning is the forecast for tonight, the weatherman also listing a very slight chance of a shower or two. Assuming Dusty Baker doesn’t sit a bunch of regulars, I like Washington’s chances to complete the broom job for my free baseball pick.

Free MLB Pick: Nationals -130Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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