Play the 'Total' for Mets vs. Nationals

Jeff Grant

Friday, May 16, 2014 12:56 PM UTC

Friday, May. 16, 2014 12:56 PM UTC

The Washington Nationals have been going above the betting total when taking on division foes this season, as they prepare to open up a three-game series against the New York Mets Friday.

Shut down
New York suffered back-to-back shutout loss to the Yankees in closing out its Subway Series, but it’s important to point out that the club was unfamiliar with each opposing starter in those affairs. 

The Mets are batting .229 on the season—tied with the Houston Astros for the 29th spot in that all-important statistical category.

Since the 2012 campaign, the squad is 28-22 as road underdogs of +100 to +125, with the OVER going 29-17-4 in that situation.

Werth it
Despite numerous injuries throughout the season, including stars Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman being on the current 15-day disabled list—the Nationals’ run production is up 12 percentage compared to their initial 40 contests a season ago. 

The Nationals have been relying heavily on outfielder Jayson Werth offensively, who has reached base in 21 of his last 22 games

MLB handicappers will find that the team is 6-6 versus left-handed starters, but the OVER is 9-2-1 in those 12 opportunities.

Check out the top MLB World Series Betting Lines

Mets starting pitcher Jonathon Niese (2-2, 2.17 ERA) has led the club to three wins in his last four efforts, but he didn’t earn a decision in a 5-4 home victory over the Philadelphia Phillies last time out. 

The left-hander is 1-0 with a 1.69 ERA in three road outings, with opposing hitters batting just .195 against him (.258 at home).

In seven career games versus the Nationals, Niese has registered a perfect 3-0 record and 2.47 ERA, including a 2-0 mark and 1.67 ERA in five starts at this ballpark.

Nationals starting pitcher Tanner Roark (2-1, 3.65 ERA) has watched the team drop his last two trips to the mound, he also failed to earn a decision in a 4-3 setback on the road to the Oakland Athletics last time out. 

The right-hander has put together a dominating 4-0 record and 0.26 ERA in nine career appearances at this venue, which has been helped by not serving up a home run in 35 combined frames.

Roark is 2-0 with a 2.93 ERA in three games (two starts) versus the Mets since becoming a professional.

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total as one of their MLB picks, as the OVER is 10-1 in the Nationals’ last 11 games versus division rivals.

Pick: Over 7


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