Short-Handed Nationals Overvalued by MLB Odds: Pick Reds +115

Darin Zank

Sunday, May 31, 2015 1:01 PM GMT

Cincinnati shoots for a sweep of Washington Sunday afternoon at Great American Ball Park. Do we back the Reds with our MLB picks, or can the Nats salvage a game?

Nats-Reds Sunday Betting Odds
In early MLB odds, Washington and Tanner Roark were favored by around -120 over Cincy and rookie Mike Lorenzen, with a total of eight runs. The Nats could also be found getting upwards of +145 on the run line.

 

The Situation
Cincinnati has taken the first two games of this contentious series, winning 5-2 Friday and 8-5 Saturday. The Reds trailed Saturday 5-4 into the bottom of the eighth inning, then scored four runs for the victory.

For the series the Washington bullpen has coughed up eight runs in 9 2/3 innings of work.

So since losing nine games in a row Cincy has won three of its last four. The Nationals, meanwhile, have lost three of their last four.

Washington is a bit shorthanded at the moment; OF Jayson Werth just went on the DL with a fractured wrist, and Bryce Harper is questionable for Sunday with a sore back, after getting beaned on the spine Friday night.

 

Sunday's Starters
Righty Lorenzen is two-for-four on quality starts this season, to go along with a couple of relief appearances. Tuesday he held Colorado to one run and two hits through seven innings, lowering his ERA for the season to 3.12, through 26 innings. He's done well in his four starts, but overall he's given up five homers, and his K/BB ratio kind of stinks, at 14/13.

This will be Lorenzen's first-ever start against Washington.

Roark will be making his second start of this season, to go along with 13 appearances in relief. Monday he held the Cubs to one run through five innings of a 2-1 Washington victory. On the season he's allowed 26 hits and seven runs through 25 1/3 innings.

Last year Roark started twice against Cincinnati and was tough, allowing just two ER and nine hits through 13 innings. The Nats split those two games, the loss coming by a score of 2-1, and both those games played UNDER.

 

Sunday Free Picks
Washington is without Werth, and Harper might not play, either. The value MLB pick on today's line resides with the home dog. Also, the Nats have played seven UNDERS in their last nine games, while the Reds have played four UNDERS in their last seven games.

MLB Picks: Cincinnati +115 at 5Dimes and UNDER eight runs at WagerWeb