Houston Astros vs. Atlanta Braves Game 4 Pick

by | Oct 30, 2021 | mlb

Houston Astros (103-72) vs. Atlanta Braves (97-77)

When: 8:10 p.m., Saturday, October 30

Where: Truist Park, Atlanta

Moneyline: HOU -102/ATL -106 (BAS - Lay less on favorites, get paid MORE on underdogs and lay only -105 odds on sides and totals on your football/basketball bets!)

Runline: Astros +1.5/Braves -1.5

Total: 8.5

Starting Pitchers: Zack Greinke (11-6, 4.16 ERA, 1.17 WHIP) vs. TBD

One Last Time

As he’s a free agent at the end of the season, this might be Zack Greinke’s last appearance in an Astros uniform, and depending on how things go this offseason, this might be his final appearance in a major league uniform, period. Greinke will have a job if he wants one next season, but he’s now 38 years old and is clearly not the same pitcher he once was.
He’s not been poor by any means, but he’s also now the kind of pitcher who tends to throw five innings and get a little help from his team to get a victory, as opposed to someone that you can count on to get the job done for everyone else. The Astros seem to be well aware that his arm has gone about as far as it can reasonably expect to go this season: they haven’t used him for longer than five innings since Aug. 23, and five of his past six appearances saw him pitch four innings or fewer.
When he’s on, Greinke can still get outs and remains one of the tougher hitters in the game to figure out. But Greinke is no longer the dominant hurler he was, so it’s possible to wait him out and try to get him to make a mistake.

Counting on the Pen

This is the game where the series can turn for Atlanta. Against the Dodgers, the Braves took control of the NLCS by winning the bullpen game and going up 3-1 in the series. They might have to do the same thing again in this game, because they don’t have the luxury of backing it up with quality starting pitching in all three of the remaining games.
If the Braves get a win here, they have plenty of luxury as to how they want to approach Game 5. If they don’t, things get very dicey, as they’ll need to get two of the final three without the services of Charlie Morton. That wouldn’t be a huge issue with him healthy, but Max Fried hasn’t inspired confidence in his starts, leaving Atlanta with one reliable starter in Ian Anderson and a bullpen that has pitched well but has to hold it together for a few more games against a powerful offense.

Shutting the Door

Abou that offense: the Astros have been in a bit of a power outage to this point in the series, scoring nine runs in three games. That’s not terrible by most standards, but it’s not good enough for them to do the job.

Houston has done this before against Boston, as Game 4 was the point where the Astros starter to get the bats working in overcoming a 2-1 deficit, but the Astros might not be as successful against Atlanta, which has done whatever it’s needed to do at home in the playoffs and is getting great work from its bullpen. The Braves haven’t had to test their arms as much as the Astros in the postseason, so their bullpen appears to be more of a threat.

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Betting Trends

  • The Astros are 6-1 in their past seven games after a loss.
  • The Astros are 11-5 in their past 16 playoff games.
  • The Braves are 6-0 in their past six home playoff games.
  • The Braves are 10-1 in their past 11 home games against a right-handed starter.
  • The under is 3-0-1 in the Astros’ past four games.
  • The over is 5-1 in the Astros’ past six playoff road games.
  • The under is 2-0-2 in the Braves’ past four against the AL West.
  • The under is 4-1 in the Braves’ past five playoff games as a favorite.
  • The Astros are 3-8 in the past 11 meetings in Atlanta.
  • The under is 9-3-1 in the past 13 meetings.

Weather Report

The weather won’t be a heck of a lot better in this situation; temperatures will sit at 55 degrees with a possible drizzle and winds blowing to left field at nine miles per hour.

Dan’s Pick

Atlanta’s bullpen has done this once, and the Braves seem to have a different mindset about them when playing at home. The Braves shouldn’t be doing this, but it looks like this is a year where the right team gets hot at the right time and gets rolling.
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