The Magic Number for the Atlanta Braves to clinch another NL East title dwindles by the day and they look to put the Mets’ playoff hopes in further jeopardy with a win in Queens on Friday to open a weekend series.
How to Bet Braves at Mets MLB Odds & TV Info
- When: Friday, 7:10 PM ET
- Where: Citi Field
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Max Fried/David Peterson
- TV: MLB Extra Innings
- Stream/gameday audio: https://www.mlb.com/live-stream-games/
- Opening MLB Lines: TBA
The Braves have one big edge in that they were off Thursday so they will have their full allotment of relievers available. Atlanta opened the season at the Mets and won two of three games. The one Braves loss was 1-0.
Braves outfielder Adam Duvall is raking right now, becoming the just the fourth player on the Braves to ever hit at least 10 homers in September, joining Chipper Jones, Eddie Matthews and Dale Murphy. As a type-1 diabetic, Adam Duvall is one of the few players considered “at-risk” when it comes to COVID-19. He could have sat out while still receiving his salary this season but opted to play. Through August, Duvall was putting together a decent campaign, posting a .732 OPS with five homers, but since the calendar turned, he’s been crushing it.
First baseman Freddie Freeman also is killing the ball, slashing.500/.559/1.033 through his past 30 at-bats, including 14 RBI. He has reached base safely in 31 consecutive contests. Freeman finished fourth in the MVP voting in 2018 and is looking to become the first Braves player to win the award since Chipper Jones in 1999.
Second baseman Ozzie Albies also is doing well of late. In the eight games since he’s returned from the injured list, he’s hitting around .400 with two homers. The 2018 All-Star was hitting below the Mendoza line before landing on the IL (.159 to be exact).
It’s ace left-hander Max Fried on the mound as he returns from the injured list. Fried was placed on the injured list September 8, retroactive to September 6, because of a left-side muscle spasm in his lumbar spine, but he’s made steady progress and should be good to go. The 26-year-old had posted a 6-0 record, 1.98 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, and 47/17 K/BB ratio over his first 50 innings (nine starts) this season.
This year, Fried has cut down on his four-seam fastball usage and turned to his slider more. His increased slider usage has helped cut down his home run rate as Fried has yet to give up a home run, whereas in 2019 he had a HR/FB rate of 20.2%. The pitch that led a high HR/9 last year (1.14) was his four-seam fastball.
“It was obviously a pitch I threw less of (change up), with the slider coming into play last year (2019),” Fried said. “I just want to keep having that fourth pitch to keep hitters off balance. Coming into the offseason, that’s something I wanted to improve on. I definitely worked really hard with that.”
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Once-touted shortstop prospect Amed Rosario is having a terrible year at the plate and it could be due to playing at short. Thus, the team might move him to center field in 2021. The Mets briefly considered moving Rosario to the outfield last year, but the idea could get a more serious look this offseason with Andres Gimenez making a strong case, both offensively and defensively, that he’s a better — or at least a more reliable — option at shortstop.
Catcher Wilson Ramos also has had a disappointing season and isn’t playing as much these days. It’s been more of an even split with Robinson Chirinos, acquired from the Rangers at the trade deadline. Ramos is known as an offensive catcher. He does not excel behind the plate as much as some of the game’s better defensive catchers. What that means: If he’s not hitting, his value decreases.
“If you’re not doing good, they will pull somebody up to try to win games,” Ramos said. “If I’m not doing a great job right now, they want to win and they’ll try to pull somebody else to see if they can do a better job.”
It’s expected to be lefty David Peterson (4-2) on the mound here. David Peterson pitched well in Sunday’s loss to the Blue Jays, allowing two runs on three hits over five innings. Peterson walked two and struck out two. The only blemish on his day was a two-run blast off the bat of Lourdes Gurriel in the second inning. His ERA dropped to 4.17. Peterson was coming off a rough outing against the Phillies in which he allowed five runs over just two innings.
Peterson pitched in Atlanta on Aug. 2. He went six innings while allowing three runs with eight strikeouts in a loss. Peterson ran into trouble in the third with a bases-loaded walk to Ronald Acuna – his only free pass of the game – and another run scored in the frame with a fielder’s choice, and he allowed a solo homer to Johan Camargo an inning later. That was Peterson’s second career MLB start.Expert PredictionBraves 4, Mets 2
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