MLB Picks: Miami Marlins vs. Atlanta Braves

Ross Benjamin

Sunday, September 1, 2013 12:08 PM GMT

The Miami Marlins and Atlanta Braves conclude their 3-game series on Sunday in a rare 5:05 PM ET start. Atlanta has taken the first 2-games of the series and is now 9-4 versus the Marlins in 2013.

Sunday MLB Free Pick Miami/Atlanta Total

Sunday 9/1/2013

Miami (Eovaldi) @ Atlanta (Wood) 5:05 ET

Game # 961-962

Last night B.J. Upton singled home Paul Janish in the bottom of the 11th inning for a 5-4 Braves win. These two clubs will meet once more this season for our MLB betting pleasure in a 4-game set at Miami starting on September 9th.

The Starting Pitchers

Nathan Eovaldi (2-5,3.76 ERA) will take the mound for Miami today. Eovaldi’s numbers are a bit skewed over his last 3 starts due to a horrible home outing versus San Francisco on 8/16 that saw him allow 9 earned runs, on 12 hits, and all in just 3.0 innings of work. Eovaldi has allowed 2 earned runs or less in 5 of his last 6 starts with the above mentioned outing the exception to the rule. He’s been solid in 7 road starts in 2013 posting a very good 3.24 ERA and 1.15 WHIP. The Marlins right-hander has seen 7 of his last 8 starts go under the total including each of his last 4 road appearances. Unfortunately he’s received very little run support as the Marlins have scored 1 run or less in 4 of his last 5 starts. Eovaldi was brilliant in his one start versus the Braves this season on August 10th throwing 7.0 innings of scoreless baseball while allowing just 1 hit and striking out 8.

The Braves counter with rookie southpaw Alex Wood (3-2/2.227 ERA). Wood is 3-0 in his last 3 team starts with an excellent 1.00 ERA. The young lefty has been especially impressive in 5 home starts in 2013 with a stellar 1.61 ERA and an almost 4:1 strikeout to walk ratio. Wood has seen each of his last 5 starts all go under the total while posting a microscopic 0.90 ERA and allowed just a combined 20 hits in 30.0 innings. In one career start versus the Marlins Wood pitched 6.0 shutout innings while allowing just 2 hits and striking out 7. 

The Teams 

The Marlins enter today ice cold have lost their last 6 in a row and 10 of the last 11. The Fish have scored 3 runs or less in 9 of their last 10 games and have had 5 hits or less in 6 of the last 8. Needless to say they’ve gone over the total just twice in their last 10 games. Miami must win at least 14 of their last 29 games to avoid a 100-loss season which seems like a highly improbable task considering their struggles to score runs.

Atlanta comes into today with an excellent 83-52 (.615) record on the season and a comfortable 15.0 game lead over 2nd place Washington in the NL East. The Braves are currently riding a 5-game winning streak. They have been dominant as a team can possibly be at home going 48-18 at Turner Field. The Marlins have been an easy out over the last 3 seasons for the Braves as they have defeated their division rival in 35 of the 49 meetings. Atlanta has gone under the total in 5 of their last 6 games overall and 8 of the last 10. They’ve held their opponents to 2 runs or less in 5 of the last 6 games.

[gameodds]3/242326/?r-1=19-349-192/us[/gameodds]

Final Analysis

There are times in sports handicapping we’re all guilty of over-analyzing or for lack of a better phrase attempting to get too cute. Sometimes we just can’t ignore the overwhelming obvious facts when handicapping a specific contest. In this game today everything points to a low scoring affair. If it looks like a rat, smells like a rat, then it’s a rat. The current MLB odds show the total on this game to be 7.5. A play on the low side is just what the doctor ordered to close the week.

MLB Free Pick: Miami/Atlanta Under 7.5 (-135)