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Nick Markakis Hits The Ball

Saturday, September 24, 2016 5:24 PM GMT

We've been riding the Atlanta Braves since the start of their 7 game winning streak, thus enabling us to making us a significant profit from our MLB Picks of the Day. Will we tail the Braves again? 

Atlanta Braves at Miami Marlins

Money-Makers
That's exactly what the Atlanta Braves (63-91) have been. This team may not have accomplished their goals this season, but they're going out with a bang and the MLB odds are continuously placing the Braves as the betting underdog and the best thing to do is ride this winning streak out as we're playing with house money.

That said, the task will be tough tonight as the Braves send out starter Aaron Blair and he's been nothing short of a nightmare at 1-6 with a 7.71 ERA. Is this the time to stop tailing the Braves or do we look for Blair to keep the Braves in the game while the offense takes over? After all, Miami (76-78) has had ample opportunity to pick up a wild card spot and they just continue to lose as time is running out.

The one positive note regarding Aaron Blair is that he picked up his first win of the season in his last outing as he allowed 2 runs on 4 hits in 6 innings pitched in a win over the Mets. Another positive regarding Blair is that he's pitched against these same Marlins and allowed 2 runs in 5 2/3 innings. His job is to keep Atlanta in the ball game while their big bats win the game for them.

 

RBI Machine
I've mentioned Freddie Freeman, Matt Kemp, an even Adonis Garcia in past articles regarding the Braves. We know that Freeman and Kemp are the leaders on this team and must hit well for the Braves to extend their winning streak. One player that doesn't get enough credit is Nick Markakis. The ability to knock in runs is one of the key aspects of being successful as a team and Markakis has been able to do this well.

For the season, Markakis is hitting .270 with 12 HR and 87 RBI's. He's a great complimentary hitter to the big bats in the lineup.  Markakis has also fared well against Miami, hitting .308 in 65 at-bats with 11 runs scored, 2 HR and 14 RBI's. Atlanta need's his production as they go for an 8th straight win. For my MLB Pick, I think that they'll get it and the betting public will once again get a nice price.

 

Free MLB Pick: Atlanta Braves +160 
Best Line Offered:
at 5Dimes

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Washington Nationals vs Pittsburgh Pirates

There's No Tomorrow
With the Washington Nationals (89-64) have the National League East Divison all but cinched up with a 7 1/2 game lead with 9 games remaining in the regular season, the Pittsburgh Pirates (77-76) have their work cut out for them, 3 1/2 games behind the San Francisco Giants for the 2nd wild card spot. This game is pretty much a must-win situation for the Pirates and they can feel confident in knowing that Ivan Nova (12-7, 4.19 ERA) get's the start as he's been nothing short of spectacular for Pittsburgh.

 

A Great Pickup
Nova has indeed been that as the New York Yankees got rid of Nova and he's been one of Pittsburgh's best pitchers. The only red mark on his resume is his last start in which he allowed 4 runs on 10 hits in a loss to the lowly Cincinnati Reds. Before that. Nova was 5-0 in 7 starts for Pittsburgh, allowing just 14 runs in 52 1/3 innings. With the exception of the last outing, Nova has been consistently allowing 1 or 2 runs per start and the Pirates have a lot more to play for than Washington as the Nats have been at the top fo the NL East Division all season long.

 

"McCutch In the Clutch"
It's been one poor season for former NL MVP, Andrew McCutchen. He's hitting just .259 with 24 HR and 75 RBI's in the 2016 MLB Regular Season. That said, this is still an elite fielder that can save runs and McCutchen has woken up offensively, hitting .318 with 6 HR and 18 RBI in the month of September and is 11 for his last 29 at-bats with 1 HR and 8 RBIs.

This guy is still the best player on his respective squad and despite Daniel Murphy's amazing season with Washington Nationals, I still think that Andrew McCutchen is the best player on both of these teams. With Nova starting, this gives the big bats in the Pirates lineup such as McCutchen, an opportunity to come through in clutch situations and Andrew McCutchen is definitely a hitter to be reckoned with. 

Nationals starter, Joe Ross (7-5 ,3.48 ERA) has pitched well this season but has been giving up a ton of hits lately. Ross has allowed the opposition to hit .267 off of him this season. I look for the Pirates to play with a sense of desperation and pick up the win as they attempt to grab a wild-card berth.

 

Free MLB Pick: Pittsburgh Pirates -112 
Best Line Offered: 
at Heritage

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