First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET
Probable pitchers: Aaron Nola (2-1, 2.05 ERA) vs. Max Fried (3-0, 1.24 ERA)
Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves Predictions
In a 60-game season, it’s never too early to start thinking about individual awards. As it pertains to this year’s National League Cy Young award, the two starters kicking off this series in Atlanta tonight are undoubtedly in the early conversation.
Max Fried — my No. 1 sleeper going into last year — has been fantastic through his first five starts, allowing no more than two runs and working at least five frames each time out. In fact, the only time multiple runs were scored off the left-hander came in Fried’s season debut four weeks ago.
Just as I wrote about last year, Fried’s emergence should come as no shock at all. The former first-round draft pick really has everything to solidify him as one of the best southpaws in the league and thus, I’d like to keep riding his ascension.
The Phillies can assuredly rake at the dish. However, when Fried saw them a couple of Sundays ago, Philadelphia managed only five baserunners (four hits and a walk) across five scoreless innings. Fried also had six strikeouts in the outing.
Meanwhile, Aaron Nola has been nearly as stingy in 2020 as his counterpart. He ranks fourth in the majors with a dominant 12.6 K/9 mark and since yielding four runs on opening day, he’s only allowed two runs total across his last three starts, spanning 21 innings. In the process, Nola also racked up 30 K’s compared to just three walks, so it’s pretty clear the LSU product is in a nice rhythm at the moment.
This is also an opponent Nola knows very well based on his track record squaring off with the Braves, whom he’s faced more than anyone else in his career. In 19 career meetings, Nola is 11-5 with a 2.82 ERA. Of course, it’s always helpful having Ronald Acuna away on the sidelines, too.
MLB Leans - August 21
MIL/PIT Under 9
LAA/OAK Under 10
2020 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: 7-18-3, -13.32 units
Yesterday’s Result: Tigers-White Sox Under 8.5 (“loss”)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit