Washington Nationals at Milwaukee Brewers Pick 7/23/18
Event: Nationals vs. Brewers
Date/Time: July 23, 2018 at 8:10 PM EDT
Location: Miller Park
Money Line: WAS -110 / MIL +100
Total line: 9
By Darin Zank
A slumping Brewers outfit hopes to regain some mojo when they kick off a three-game series with the Nationals at Miller Park Monday night (8:10 ET). Which way are we playing this contest with our daily free MLB picks?
The MLB Betting Line
Monday’s MLB betting odds opened Milwaukee and Jhoulys Chacin at around -110 over Washington and Gio Gonzalez, with an over/under of 9 runs. But early betting action pushed the Nationals into -110 favorites.
The Nats could also be found getting upwards of +150 giving the run and a half on the run line.
Washington just split two games at home with Atlanta over the weekend, winning a long, rain-delayed match Sunday 6-2. The Nats won Sunday as -200 favorites with Max Scherzer and covered against the run line at a price of +105.
Even with Sunday’s win, Washington is 0-1-2 over its last three series and 4-6 over its last 10 games.
At 49-49 overall the Nationals trail first-place Philadelphia by six games in the NL East, and they’re five games back of the Braves in the battle for the second National League wild-card spot.
Milwaukee, meanwhile, just dropped two of three at home to the Dodgers, losing Sunday’s rubber match 11-2. So the Brewers are 0-3 over their last three series and 1-8 over their last nine games.
At 56-45 overall Milwaukee now trails the first-place Cubs by 3.5 games in the NL Central, but leads the NL wild-card race by a half-game over Atlanta.
This is the first encounter between these two teams this season. Last year the Brewers took the season series from the Nats four games to three.
Monday’s Mound Match-Up
Chacin (8-3, 3.68), by our strict standards, is only 6/21 on quality starts this year, but a lot of that has to do with a short leash. Eight days ago he held Pittsburgh to one earned run and one hit through 5 1/3 innings, and over his last four starts, he’s allowed eight ER through 23 innings. On the season Milwaukee is 14-7 with Chacin, with the unders going 11-10.
In two starts last year for San Diego against Washington Chacin gave up four runs and 11 hits through 9 1/3 innings. His Padres split those two games.
Lefty Gonzalez (6-6, 3.72) is 7/19 on quality starts, but that’s also a bit misleading. Twelve days ago Gonzo held the Pirates to two runs through six innings, and over his last three starts, he’s allowed seven runs through 16 innings. The Nats are 10-9 with Gonzo this year, with the unders going 13-6.
In two starts last year against the Brewers Gonzalez allowed seven runs and 13 hits through 13 innings. Washington split those two games.
We’re giving the Brew Crew a short edge in this pitching match-up.
Monday’s Batting Splits
Washington ranks 19th in the Majors this season against right-handed pitching with a .246 team batting average, 10th with a .322 team OBP and 15th with a .409 team slugging percentage.
Milwaukee ranks 28th against left-handed pitching with a .222 BA, 26th with a .299 OBP and 23rd with a .369 slugging percentage.
We’re giving the Nationals the edge with the sticks for Monday night.
The Nats bullpen ranks 9th in the ML with a 3.61 ERA and fourth with a 1.19 WHIP while going 29/37 on save opportunities. Washington closer Sean Doolittle is out of action with a bad foot, but the Nats pen is 2/2 on save chances since he went down.
The Brewers pen ranks 6th in ERA at 3.40 and 10th in WHIP at 1.26 while going 27/44 on save conversions. But this unit has faltered lately, playing a key part in Milwaukee’s recent troubles.
We’re gonna give Washington a short edge in the comparison of the bullpens, too.
The unders are 27-22 in games played at Miller Park this year, which are averaging 8.4 total runs per.
The unders went 4-2-1 in Nats-Brewers games last year, in part because of some high totals.
Free MLB Picks
Washington is 39-31 against right-handed starters this year, while Milwaukee is 11-11 against LH starters. Also, the Brewers are just going bad right now, falling behind early almost every time out, and sometimes when it comes to betting baseball, you have to ride streaks and skids. We’ll take the Nationals here.