Strap yourself in and kick off the working week with five free moneyline picks for today’s Major League Baseball action!
Look below to find our free MLB Picks for the five best games on today’s schedule!
Atlanta Braves @ New York Mets – 5.10PM ET
A pair of NL East rivals will kick off their four game series in New York with a Monday evening double header. This preview is for the first game between the Mets and Braves on Monday night.
New York will be looking to bounce back to form after recently dropping three of their four games to the Nationals in Washington over the weekend. The Mets won the first game of their Saturday double header 5-2, however they were outscored 4-12 in the remaining three games of their series.
As for the Braves, they recently concluded a six game road trip with a victory in the final match of their four game set against the Cardinals at home. Atlanta were leading the series 2-0 entering Sunday’s double header and after splitting games three and four, the Braves claimed a 3-1 series victory after outsourcing St Louis 15-10 across the four matches.
With Jacob deGrom coming out of the game, a summary of his perfect, but short night:
– 3 perfect innings pitched (8 strikeouts)
– Struck out final 7 batters he faced
– 1-1, RBI single as hitter (only at-bat)
deGrom’s ERA for the season is now 0.54 pic.twitter.com/82uIzLxU3P
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 17, 2021
Although it is not confirmed, Atlanta are expected to give Ian Anderson the ball for Monday’s series opener. Anderson owns a 4-3 record from 13 starts this season, to go along with a 3.58 ERA, 1.22 WHIP and 74 strikeouts from 70.1 innings of action. The right hander has been more costly recently, owning a 4.70 ERA from his last three starts.
The Mets will counter with NL Cy Young favorite Jacob deGrom on Monday evening. deGrom has a 6-2 record, 0.54 ERA, 0.51 WHIP and 111 strikeouts over 67 innings of work in 2021. The right hander threw three innings in his last start, allowing zero runs on zero hits with eight strikeouts before leaving the game with a shoulder issue.
As the Braves are coming off a double header on Sunday and the Mets are coming off a double header on Saturday, both pitching staffs will be tired heading into this series opening double header on Monday. Considering that New York will be starting arguably the best pitcher in the league in deGrom and supporting him with the No. 1 ranked pitching staff in baseball (3.11 team ERA), we are going to take the Mets at home in this matchup. Atlanta’s lineup is more capable of putting up a winning score, however they have been streaky in 2021 and will struggle against a pitcher as good as deGrom.
Houston Astros @ Baltimore Orioles – 7.05PM ET
The best team in the American League will take on the worst on Monday night when the Astros head to Baltimore to kick off their three game series against the Orioles.
As a result of their 8-2 victory on Sunday, the Houston Astros completed a four game series sweep over the Chicago White Sox. The Astros outscored the White Sox 27-8 in the four game series and they now own a 15-4 record from their past 19 games, giving them the best record in the AL (43-28).
Contrastingly, Baltimore will enter Monday’s series opener having lost their past two games against Toronto. The Orioles won the first game of their weekend series 7-1, however they were then outscored 11-17 in the following two losses. Baltimore’s 23-48 record is the worst in the American League.
Keegan Akin will look to return Baltimore to the winners list at home on Monday when he makes his fifth start (ninth appearance) of the season. Akin is 0-2 with a 5.76 ERA, 1.45 WHIP and 27 strikeouts from 29.2 innings of work this year. The southpaw has been costly in his last two outings, allowing 11 earned runs on 13 hits in that time.
Jake Odorizzi will look to continue the Astros good form when he makes his seventh start (eighth appearance) of the season. Odorizzi is 1-3 with a 5.68 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 26 strikeouts from 25.1 innings of action. Although he threw four shutout innings in his last appearance, Odorizzi has allowed six earned runs in his last three outings.
With just one win from their past 11 games, we haven’t seen enough from the Baltimore Orioles to suggest that they are capable of defeating the red hot Houston Astros on Monday. As well as that, Houston’s offense is averaging a league high 5.62 runs per contest and they are fresh off a 27 run performance from their four game set against the White Sox. Neither pitcher is entering this matchup in great form, so we believe Houston’s potent offense will lead them to a victory, especially when coming up against Baltimore’s Keegan Akin.
Cleveland Indians @ Chicago Cubs – 8.05PM ET
The Chicago Cubs are headed to Cleveland to kick off their short two game set against the Indians on Monday night.
Monday’s clash will be the Indians fourth of nine consecutive games on the road, as they recently won just one of their three games against the Pirates in Pittsburgh. Cleveland were outscored 13-17 in the opening two games of their series against the Pirates, before winning their most recent clash 2-1 to avoid the series sweep.
Similarly, the Cubs dropped the opening two games of their set against Miami in Chicago before winning the series finale 2-0. Chicago were outscored 21-3 in games one and two.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) June 20, 2021
Chicago’s Albert Alzolay will make his 12th start of the season on Monday night. Alzolay has a 4-5 record, 4.06 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 62 strikeouts from 57.2 innings of action this year. The right hander has thrown 13.2 innings in his last three starts, allowing five earned runs on 13 hits in that time.
The Indians will counter with Aaron Civale for Monday’s series opener. The right hander has a 3.48 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 71 strikeouts from 93 innings this season. Although Shane Bieber is Cleveland’s ace, Civale’s 10-2 record is a team and league best.
Although Civale leads the league in wins, he has also given up four or more earned in three of his last four starts. Seeing as the Cubs will be supporting their starter with a stronger rotation, we are going to take Chicago to at home in this series opener. Neither lineup has been firing recently, however the Cubs 25 wins at home are the equal most in the National League, and we like them to build on their impressive record at Wrigley Field on Monday.
Milwaukee Brewers @ Arizona Diamondbacks – 9.40PM ET
The Arizona Diamondbacks will be looking to improve on their league worst 20-52 record when they host the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night, for what will be the first match of their three game series.
Having won the final two games of their series against the Rockies in Colorado, the Brewers will take confidence out of their recent form. Milwaukee dropped game one on Thursday and game two on Friday before salvaging a split series with wins in game three and four on Saturday and Sunday.
As for the Diamondbacks, they do not know the meaning of the word confidence. Arizona were swept at home in their most recent three game series against the Dodgers, as they were outscored 11-21 across the weekend. The three losses have extended Arizona’s active losing streak to 17 consecutive games.
Merrill Kelly will be given the daunting task of bringing an end to the Diamondbacks losing streak when he makes his 15th start of the season. Kelly is 2-7 in 2021 to go along with a 5.40 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and 72 strikeouts from 78.1 innings this year. The right hander has given up 11 earned runs in his last three starts, throwing 14 innings in that time.
The Brewers will send Brett Anderson to the mound for his 12th start of the season on Monday. Anderson has a 2-4 record, 4.24 ERA, 1.39 WHIP and 30 strikeouts from 46.2 innings this year. The southpaw is coming off an impressive performance in his last start, having thrown seven scoreless innings for just one hit with nine strikeouts against Cincinnati.
Although the Diamondbacks are at home, Arizona have shown nothing in their active 17 game losing streak to suggest that they are capable of getting an upset win against a 40 win team in the Brewers. Especially when considering that seven of those 17 consecutive losses have come in Arizona. As well as that, Milwaukee’s Brett Anderson is coming off one of his best starts of the season (seven scoreless innings for just one hit with nine strikeouts against Cincinnati), and we like him to continue that form against a Diamondbacks lineup that is averaging just 3.76 runs per game in their active losing streak.
Los Angeles Dodgers @ San Diego Padres – 10.10PM ET
A pair of NL West rivals will close out our Monday night MLB schedule when the third placed Padres host the second placed Dodgers for the first meeting of their three game set in San Diego.
The Dodgers will be full of confidence entering Monday’s series opener, having recently kicked off their six game road trip with a three game sweep over the Diamondbacks in Arizona. Los Angeles outscored Arizona 21-11 in their three victories, scoring nine runs in game two on Saturday and in game three on Sunday.
As for the Padres, they will also be feeling confident after recently kicking off their 10 game stint at home with a four game sweep over the Reds. Although they had won just two of their past 11 games prior to Thursday’s series opener, San Diego outscored Cincinnati 24-13 as they returned to form with four consecutive wins.
— San Diego Padres (@Padres) June 20, 2021
Yu Darvish will look to continue the Padres from resurgence when he makes his 15th start of the year. San Diego’s ace has a 6-2 record, 2.57 ERA, 0.95 WHIP and 97 strikeouts from 84 innings of work this season. Darvish was costly by his standards in his last start, allowing four earned runs on six hits in five innings against Colorado. It was only the third time this year that Darvish has conceded more than two earned runs.
Julio Urias will make his 15th start of the season on Monday. Urias is 9-2 this year, to go along with a 3.54 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 90 strikeouts from 84 innings of action. The left hander has thrown 16.2 innings in his last three starts, allowing six earned runs on 16 hits in that time.
Although both teams are coming into this series with winning form behind them, we like the Padres at home for Monday’s series opener. San Diego has a 4-3 record over Los Angeles in 2021 and we believe that they will build on that record on Monday with Darvish at the mound. The Padres ace is having another Cy Young caliber season and we like him to get the better of a Dodgers lineup that will not feature Max Muncy, Cody Bellinger or Corey Seager on Monday.
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