MLB Picks & Odds Update: NL East Running Hot and Cold

Doug Upstone

Wednesday, May 20, 2015 8:38 PM UTC

Wednesday, May. 20, 2015 8:38 PM UTC

Recently the National League East gave a terrific view of what makes beating the sportsbooks betting odds so challenging. All five teams last week went on a streak, some good, some bad.

Washington, Atlanta and Philadelphia all quickly became play on teams for MLB picks by winning repeatedly. Miami and the Mets did just the opposite and baseball handicappers were suggesting them for play against material. What lies ahead for all these squads, let’s try and determine in looking what their schedule might mean.


Mets – Pitching Keeping New York Profitable
Most baseball bettors are expecting the inevitable; it is just a matter of time before Washington takes the lead in the NL East and begins to pull away as thought. New York looked they were ready to roll over and succumb, losing five straight from May 11-15. The Mets lack of offense comes to the forefront when the pitching is not as strong as usual. However, manager Terry Collins crew turned it around and they remain the most profitable team in the division against the MLB odds because of just enough hitting to go with the second-best staff in the NL if you use ERA as a barometer.

After finishing up with St. Louis, the Mets head to Pittsburgh for a weekend series, but turn right around and are back at Citi Field where they are generating profits like credit card companies and should remain a good play.


Nationals – Washington back in the black
This write-up has nothing to do with old AC/DC songs or their new CD. Rather it is about the Washington Nationals living up to their potential in playing outstanding baseball and being the hottest team in the majors. Thanks in part to Bryce Harper, the Washington offense has been clicking and the pitching staff does not feel like they have to shutout the opposing team to win any longer. After being deeply buried in red ink for those backing them for sports picks, at least for the moment, Washington is in the black for making money and is likely to stay there as the season moves forward.

The Nats will finish up the homestand with Philadelphia and be in the Midwest for take on the Cubs and Reds before returning home. Impossible not to be impressed with Washington, who should get the benefit of the doubt for selections.


Braves – Ebb and Flow Leading Atlanta Nowhere
All season for the Braves it has been one step forward and one step backward. One series the hitters are terrific and next they are not. The following week the pitchers allow hardly any runs and a few days later Atlanta fans are on sports talk radio wondering why they same guys are in the big leagues.

In truth, this is what sportsbooks like WagerWeb thought would happen with the Braves, lacking the talent to win consistently. After a winnable four-game series with Milwaukee at home, Atlanta has a treacherous road trip to face the Dodgers, Giants and Diamondbacks. Watch this club’s mood before wagering.


Phillies – Pitching Caring Philadelphia for Now
As opposed to the 76ers who are on the same town as the Phillies, the baseball team knows they had to also rebuild but are not tanking like the basketball team. The Philly franchise and skipper Ryne Sandberg understood what this season would entail. But instead of stripping the team down to nothing, the emphasis is on restocking the farm system and while the players on the 2015 squad are either average an beyond their prime years, the Phils from May 13-18 hit Yahtzee and won six in a row.

What has saved the Phillies is the pitching is a little of above average and grizzled veteran like Aaron Harang are showing true grit which has rubbed off. Though the offense still stinks at 3.1 RPG, that is an improvement over 2.8 RPG for most of the season.

Philadelphia will return to their talent level soon and it might happen on this road trip in either Colorado, Washington or at the Mets. But it has been fun and because its baseball, it will most likely happen again.


Marlins – Overestimating Situation
Any number of baseball experts saw Miami as a club on the rise. The Marlins had a roster of young players, most with ability who still had not reached their plateau. The belief was by blending some veterans hurlers with the young guys on the staff, this would accelerate their progress and Miami would be a at worst a wild card contender. Wrong!

That might be a little strong with three-quarters of the season remaining, but with an offense not scoring four runs a night and staff ERA over 4, hard to think see where Miami makes a vast improvement and turns it around.

The Marlins have to take advantage of the rest of the homestand versus Arizona and Baltimore and hope to heat up like the local beaches before being off to the Steel City and the Big Apple for NL encounters. Stay away from this team!

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