First pitch: 3:05 p.m. ET
Probable pitchers: Seth Lugo (3-3, 3.82 ERA) vs. Austin Voth (1-5, 6.25 ERA)
New York Mets vs. Washington Nationals Predictions
As I highlighted yesterday, it can be crucial to find purpose and motivation of starting pitchers in the season’s final days, let alone the last game of the year.
The Mets and Nationals endured two very disappointing campaigns in 2020. Even in what appears to be a meaningless game at first glance, there’s ways to prognosticate how the contest will unveil.
First of all, there actually is some meaning in a sense to the season finale between these National League East rivals. For you see, the division cellar is on the line here.
If the Mets lose, they will fall into last-place, by virtue of the Nats owning the head-to-head tiebreaker. Don’t think that’s something unbeknownst to the prideful Mets starter today, Seth Lugo.
Not only will Lugo be pitching for his club’s finish, he’s also pitching for his starting job in 2021. As he even acknowledged when asked if he’s made a strong case to remain in the rotation, he’s “not sure.” In other words, he’s definitely not content.
That means we can anticipate Lugo on his game this afternoon. When that’s the case, there’s a solid shot at him duplicating his most recent effort when he worked into the seventh inning against the playoff-bound Tampa Bay Rays and limited them to two runs (one earned) while striking out seven. That was also notable for the season-long in distance.
Lugo has also managed to limit Washington’s two best hitters in his encounters with them. That would be Juan Soto and Trea Turner, who are a combined 4-for-20 (.200) with six punch-outs when facing the 30-year-old righty.
As for Austin Voth, it’s pretty simple. The former fifth-round draft pick is rolling right now and probably constructing his best pitching since first arriving in the Majors.
In his last assignment, Voth notched his first career complete game — albeit often the seven-inning variety due to it being a doubleheader affair — but it was still a cool accomplishment because it was the first time Voth went seven frames. He also tied his career high with seven punchouts.
Prior to that, Voth held the Rays to only one run, making it two standout performances in a row. True, he didn’t have a great showing in his lone meeting with New York earlier this season but most of that could be chalked up as a fluke, considering career-long dead bat Tomas Nido had the best game of his entire life.
Voth should keep it going and be game. Combine that with Lugo’s typical effectiveness and you have a recipe to churn out a final score on the lower side.
MLB Leans - September 27
CHC/CHW Under 9.5
2020 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: “19-41-4,” -27.74 units
Yesterday’s Result: Mariners-Athletics Under 7, game 1 (WIN)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit