Tracking the Nationals: Season-Long MLB Picks and Handicapping for Washington Baseball
by Dave Schwab - 5/15/2014
Doc's Sports is a firm believer that specialization when it comes to wagering on MLB games has proven to be a profitable betting strategy. In an effort to emphasis this point we decided to release free MLB picks each week for the Washington Nationals during the entire MLB regular season. When you concentrate your handicapping efforts on a single team it not only builds familiarity but it works to make that team all the more predictable. My goal is to earn a long-term profit using this strategy through these free Washington Nationals' picks.
Doc's also believes that proper money management is a key to successfully wagering on sports over the long haul, so I will also be utilizing the Unit Betting System for all of my picks. Doc's will publish these articles once or twice a week, so be sure to take advantage of this specialized betting approach by checking our homepage daily to follow along with my progress.
Washington Nationals Free Picks, Odds and Predictions
Friday, May 16, 7:05 p.m. EST (Nationals Park)
New York at Washington MLB Free Picks, Odds and Predictions
The Washington Nationals return home from a six-game road trip out west to kick off a three-game weekend series at home against the NL East rival New York Mets. Game 1 is scheduled for Friday night with a 7:05 p.m. start at Nationals Park.
The Mets head into this matchup fresh off an extended four-game home-and-home Subway Series against the rival Yankees. They won the first two games on the road before getting shut out 4-0 on Wednesday night as +137 underdogs at home. That series wraps things up on Thursday night, with New York listed as a +120 favorite at home.
Washington had some major troubles against Oakland in a three-game interleague series this past weekend to open its recent road trip. It lost all three games by a combined score of 21-4. The Nationals bounced back by taking two of three against Arizona this week to improve to 21-19 on the year. They are now a game and half in back of Atlanta in the division.
New York at Washington Betting Storylines
New York has remained competitive in the division race so far with a 19-20 start in its first 39 games. It showed some tremendous power at the plate in its first two outings against the Yankees this week with 21 runs and despite getting completely shut down by Masahiro Tanaka in Game 3 of that series, the Mets have scored four of more runs in their previous four outings. Overall, the team is ranked fifth in the National League in runs with an average of 4.2 a game. David Wright has had the biggest bat in this lineup with 25 RBI while hitting .289.
Jon Niese should get the call as New York's starter for Friday night. The left-hander is coming off a no-decision against Philadelphia in which he allowed three earned runs on eight hits in six innings of work. Going back to last season, he has not allowed more than three earned runs in his last 11 starts. Niese is 2-2 in seven previous starts this season with an ERA of 2.17 and a 1.07 WHIP. This will be his first start against the Nationals this season.
It has been hit or miss with the Nationals' lineup this year in terms of consistently getting runners across the plate. They racked up 11 runs in two victories over the Diamondbacks this week, but not counting those wins they have also been held to three runs or less in eight of their last nine games. Injuries have been an issue, with Ryan Zimmerman, Bryce Harper and Adam LaRoche currently on the DL, but Anthony Rendon has done a good job filling the void with a team-high 24 RBIs and five homeruns.
The Nationals will go with Tanner Roark as their starter for the series opener. The right-hander looked sharp in a no-decision against Oakland in his last outing by allowing just one run on two hits in 7 2/3 innings. He won his first start of the season against the Mets by holding them to two earned runs on six hits in six innings of work. Overall, Roark is 2-1 in seven starts with a 3.65 ERA. He has posted 36 strikeouts in 44 1/3 innings pitched.
New York at Washington MLB Betting Odds and Key Trends
The Mets are 2-6 in their last eight road games against a team with a winning record at home and 1-6 in their last seven games against a right-handed starter. The total has gone "over" in four of their last five games.
The Nationals are 6-1 in their last seven games following a day off and 4-1 in Game 1 of their last five series. The total has stayed "under" in four of their last five games at home.
New York comes into this series with a 15-36 record in the last 51 meetings, and it is 0-8 in the last eight meetings. The total has gone over in seven of the last nine games between the two. Washington swept the first three games of this year's season series by outscoring the Mets 22-10 on the road. The total went over in two of the three games.
New York at Washington Free MLB Picks and Betting Predictions
I really like the Nationals' chances to get off to another fast start to a series with a win in the opener on Friday night. New York is coming off an extended four-game series, so fatigue could be a factor, and Roark brings some solid form into this matchup. I am making this a 3-Unit play using Doc's Unit Betting System.
Year-to-Date Betting Record: 4-3 (+$314)
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