With series sweeps, wins and losses all in play, all five of today’s Free MLB Pick games are the final matches of the teams respective midweek sets!
Look below to find our free MLB Picks for the five best games on today’s schedule!
Houston Astros @ New York Yankees – 1.05PM ET
The New York Yankees will host the Houston Astros at Yankee Stadium on Thursday evening for the third and final game of their midweek series.
As a result of Tuesday’s 7-3 win and Wednesday’s 6-3 win, the Yankees are on the cusp of a three game series sweep against the Astros.
Giancarlo Stanton has been the star with the bat for New York this week, combining for two runs, seven hits and seven RBIs from his nine at bats across the opening two games against Houston. The Yankees pitching staff has also continued their solid start to the season, allowing just three runs in each victory.
Giancarlo Stanton home run! Dude is on another planet right now pic.twitter.com/wQJrusafIS
— Talkin’ Yanks (@TalkinYanks) May 6, 2021
As for the Astros, Brooks Raley failed to produce with the ball on Wednesday. With the game tied 3-3 at the bottom of the eighth, Raley allowed two hits and two earned runs while failing to collect a single out, giving the Yankees a lead heading into the ninth.
Lance McCullers is scheduled to take the ball for the Astros on Thursday, currently with a 3.38 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in five starts. McCullers is coming off of his best start of the season, having recently held Tampa Bay scoreless in seven innings as well as collecting nine strike outs.
However, the Yankees will counter with right handed ace Gerrit Cole. As it stands, Cole has the fourth best ERA in the league (1.43) and the third most strikeouts (62). Cole is coming off of another dominant performance, having struck-out 12 Detroit batters with no walks in six scoreless innings against the Tigers in his last start.
Seeing as the Astros have struggled to score in their first two games of this series at Yankee stadium (having been outscored 13-6 in that time), we can’t rationalise picking Houston’s offense to improve with Gerrit Cole at the mound for New York.
Milwaukee Brewers @ Philadelphia Phillies – 1.05PM ET
The Brewers and the Phillies will conclude a four game series in Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, with the home team looking for a rare four game sweep.
After winning Monday’s series opener 4-3, Tuesday’s game 6-5 and most recently Wednesday’s clash 5-4, the Phillies will be looking at Thursday’s game as an opportunity to collect their first four game series sweep of the 2021 MLB season.
Didi Gregorius clubbed a first inning grand slam on Wednesday, giving Philadelphia a 5-0 lead heading into the second, essentially setting up the one run victory.
As for Milwaukee, Freddy Peralta took the loss with the ball, giving up four hits and five earned runs in his four innings at the mound.
Brandon Woodruff will be looking to return the Brewers to the winners list on Thursday. Woodruff will take the ball with the fifth best ERA in the majors (1.80) to go along with a 0.80 WHIP in what has been a Cy Young caliber season. Woodruff held the Dodgers to just two runs in six innings during his last start.
Zack Wheeler has been decent with the ball this season, currently boasting a 3.49 ERA through his 31.2 innings. However, the 30 year old has allowed 4+ runs in two out of his last three outings.
As they have been dominant with Brandon Woodruff at the mound this season, we can’t go past the Brewers to win this one on the road and avoid the sweep. Woodruff has held opponents to one or zero earned runs in four of his last five outings.
Detroit Tigers @ Boston Red Sox – 1.10PM ET
The Tigers and Red Sox will also conclude their three game series at Fenway Park on Thursday.
For the Tigers, Thursday will be the final match of a nine game road trip that has seen them pick up a lowly 2-6 record from their first eight games. However, as a result of Wednesday’s 6-5 victory over the Red Sox in Boston, Detroit snapped a six game losing streak.
As competitive as they were on Wednesday, the Tigers have been consistently poor performers lately, with a .167 batting average and a 5.63 ERA from their past 10 games (prior to Wednesday). Detroit have a 1-9 record in that time and have been outscored by 34 runs over that stretch of games.
Congrats to @MFulmer12 on recording his first career save!
ʏᴏᴜ ʀᴇᴀᴅ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ᴄᴏʀʀᴇᴄᴛʟʏ pic.twitter.com/KFpNjcxZ6M
— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) May 6, 2021
As a result of Wednesday’s 5-6 loss, Boston missed out on the chance to join Oakland as the only 19 win teams in the American League. Martin Perez was tight with the ball early on Wednesday, however he allowed two runs in the sixth innings which proved to be costly.
With the bat, J.D Martinez tied the game with a two run homer in the seventh, however the Tigers piled on three runs in the 10th inning to put the game out of reach. Martinez finished with one run, two hits and two RBIs in another solid performance.
Nathan Eovaldi gets the start for the Red Sox on Thursday, giving Boston an advantage at the mound in the series finale. Eovaldi is 4-2 with a 3.83 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP this season, while Detroit’s Spencer Turnbull (4.50 ERA) is coming off his worst start of the year. Turnbull gave up four earned runs on five hits as well as three walks in five innings against the Yankees in his last outing.
However, in two of his last three starts Turnbull has given up three runs or less. He is more than capable of keeping the Tigers competitive in this game, but we still like Boston’s potent offense to steer the Red Sox to a win at home.
Atlanta Braves @ Washington Nationals – 4.05PM ET
The Washington Nationals will host the Atlanta Braves for the third time in three days on Thursday, with Atlanta looking to cap off a rare sweep on the road.
After winning Tuesday’s series opener 6-1, the Braves captured a series victory on the road on Wednesday with a 5-3 win.
William Contreras recorded two runs on two hits with an RBI from his three at bats, however Marcel Ozuna set the game up with the bat, clubbing a third inning grand slam to give the Braves a 4-0 lead.
Erick Fedde took the loss with the ball for Washington, allowing five hits and five earned runs in five innings at the mound, including Ozuna’s third inning grand slam.
The Nats will be giving Jon Lester the ball for his second start of the season. Lester gave up five hits and zero runs in five innings during his last start against the Marlins.
The Braves will send Drew Smyly to the mound. Although he is the more experienced pitcher in this matchup, Smyly has not been at his best this season, currently with a 8.05 ERA though 19 innings this year.
As he was lights out in his most recent start, we like Lester to have another strong outing on Thursday, giving the Braves offense all kinds of issues and steering the Nationals to a series sweep-avoiding win. Especially when coming up against the out of form Smyly.
Arizona Diamondbacks @ Miami Marlins – 6.40PM ET
The Arizona Diamondback will conclude their three game series in Miami on Thursday evening.
Thanks to a six run eighth inning in Tuesday’s series opener, the Marlins took a 1-0 lead in their set against the Diamondbacks. As a result of Arizona sending Luke Weaver to the mound for game two, Miami had an advantage with the ball which resulted in the Marlins claiming a 2-0 series victory with one game to play.
Coming into Wednesday’s clash, Weaver had a 4.91 ERA, 1.286 WHIP, nine walks and 23 strikeouts over 25.2 innings. However in his last three starts, Weaver had a 7.62 ERA from 13 innings at the mound.
The Marlins capitalised on Weaver’s poor form, putting up a second consecutive score of 8+ runs and taking Weaver for six earned runs on six hits in just four innings of work.
IT COUNTS IN OUR BOOK.
MADISON BUMGARNER HAS THROWN A NO-HIT GAME! pic.twitter.com/nRHNWX0DVV
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) April 25, 2021
Madison Bumgarner will be given the responsibility of avoiding a series sweep on Thursday, taking the mound for the seventh time this season. Bumgarner has a 5.58 ERA, 1.239 WHIP, 10 walks and 33 strikeouts over 30.2 innings with the ball this season.
Bumgarner will give Arizona a slight advantage at the mound with Nick Neidert expected to be recalled from the minors for his fourth start of the season. Neidert comes into this encounter with a 0-1 record, 6.75 ERA and 2.00 WHIP in his 12 innings with Miami this year.
While the Marlins are at home and are on the cusp of series sweep, we are taking the Diamondbacks on the road in this encounter. With neither side sending a dominant pitcher to the mound on Thursday, the side with the better batting lineup should get the win in this encounter.
As much as they have struggled in their past two outings, Arizona is the No. 1 batting team in the league when looking at runs scored this season and the ninth ranked team in the league when looking at collective batting average.
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.