Major league baseball on Saturday night and I will have a free pick in the game between the Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies, which will take place at Citizen's Bank Park. First pitch is scheduled for a 7:05 PM (Eastern) start time and the game will be televised locally.
Over/ Under: 7.5 -110
The Phils are out of the playoff race, but that are not playing like it as they have won 11 of their last 13, while the Braves are heading the other way as they have won 1 of their last 9 games. Philly has taken the first 2 of this series and they are 25-26 at home, while the Braves are just 20-37 on the road.
Atlanta ranks 25th in scoring (3.66 rpg), 17th in hitting (.251) and 30th in homers (62), while on the mound they are 19th in ERA (3.97) and 27th in WHIP (1.37). The Phillies rank 27th in scoring (3.60 rpg), 19th in hitting (.250) and 29th in homers (69), while on the mound they are 29th in ERA (4.60) and 29th in WHIP (1.46).
Getting the ball for the Braves tonight will be Matt Wisler, who is 5-1 with a 3.43 ERA overall, while on the road he has gone 2-1 with a 4.37 ERA. Matt has yet to face the Phils.
Taking the hill for the Phillies tonight will be Aaron Nola, who will be making his 3 career start. He is 1-1 with a 3.29 ERA in his first 2 starts with neither of those starts being vs the Braves.
Pick: The hottest team in baseball right row is... Philadelphia? Are you serious? Yep this team has won 11 of their last 13 games since the All-Star break and they should keep it going tonight with one of their better pitching prospects on the mound. Aaron Nola has made just 2 starts for the Phils and he is 1-1 with a 3.29 ERA in those starts. In his lone home start he did lose, but it was just 1-0 and he allowed just 5 hits and 1 ER in 6 innings of work. He will be opposed by Matt Wisler, who is 2-1 on the road, but with a 4.37 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP. The Phils offense is in much better shape right now, as they have averaged 4.9 rpg in their last 10 games, while the Braves have put up a mere 1.8 rpg over the same stretch. Overall the Braves have won just 1 of their last 9 games, meaning these teams are clearly heading in opposite direction. The Phils don't have a shot at the playoffs, but they are playing with a ton of heart right now and I see that continuing tonight.
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College Football Betting Pick: Utah vs Michigan
Jim Harbaugh is worth six points to Michigan according to the recently released Golden Nugget NCAA Football odds, but pro bettors Steve Fezzik and Scott Spreitzer think fans are expecting way too much way too soon for the new Wolverines head coach. In this 9/3/2015 match up, the guys think the Utes are on the way up, recruiting top Pac-12 talent, while Harbaugh and company will be struggling to find their stride this early in the season.