Mets vs Braves

Mets vs Braves | MLB Betting Odds

Written by on May 17, 2021

The lone national TV game around Major League Baseball on Monday night is an NL East matchup as the New York Mets visit the Atlanta Braves. It’s the first meeting of the season between the division contenders and the Braves are favored on the MLB odds.

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New York was swept over the weekend at Tampa Bay, dropping the finale 7-1 on Sunday. The Mets entered the series on a seven-game winning streak. Right fielder Michael Conforto left in the middle of the first inning Sunday after grounding into a double play and Jeff McNeil came out for a pinch hitter in the third inning with his own hamstring injury.

“Hamstring issues are no joke,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said. “We’re going to get some tests, MRIs. When you’re talking about hamstrings you get concerned. We are going to wait for the results and then figure out a timeline.”

Catcher Patrick Mazeika picked up his first major league hit Sunday, a home run. He entered the game as the designated hitter, pinch-hitting for McNeil. Mazeika is the Mets’ third catcher on the roster and it’s unknown how long he will remain on the roster now that the Mets have left interleague play.

It’s Taijuan Walker (3-1, 2.20) on the mound here. Walker worked seven innings of one-run ball in the Mets’ 7-1 defeat of the Orioles last Wednesday. Walker scattered four hits and three walks while striking out four in the 97-pitch afternoon outing at Citi Field. He ranks seventh in the Majors in opponents’ batting average (.170).

Walker, who arrived late in the offseason on a two-year deal worth $20 million (after the Mets had missed on options such as Trevor Bauer and James Paxton), has pitched to a 1.11 ERA at home this season. He now has full confidence in himself as he continues to boost his stock following Tommy John Surgery in 2020.

“I feel confident in myself and I felt confident last year,” Walker said. “I showed that I had a couple of more pitches, and this year my only focus is to go out there and try to help the team win ballgames, try to go deep into games. I don’t care if I am proving people wrong or not. I know what I can do and the Mets believed in me and they know what I can do too.”

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Atlanta took two of three over the weekend in Milwaukee but lost 10-9 on Sunday. Reigning NL MVP Freddie Freeman was hitless on the day until he was up to bat in the seventh inning with the bases loaded. With Braves by down five runs, he made it a one-run game with a 104.5 mile per hour blast to center field. Freeman started the ninth inning against Josh Hader with a walk and scored on a sacrifice fly to once again make it a one-run game. The 31-year-old first baseman is up to 11 home runs on the year with a .222/.349/.472 slash line.

Austin Riley went 2-for-2 with three walks and a run scored in Sunday’s loss. Riley reached base on all five plate appearances. The 24-year-old raised his slash line to an impressive .291/.405/.394 through 153 plate appearances. It was hit fourth multi-hit performance of the month.

Braves superstar Ronald Acuna was out of the lineup for a third straight game Sunday but did pinch-hit. Manager Brian Snitker sent Acuna to the plate to hit for reliever Sean Newcomb with runners on second and third bases and the Braves trailing the Brewers 10-8. Facing reliever Devin Williams, Acuna struck out swinging on a 2-2 changeup.

Acuna has been out of the starting lineup with a sprained left ankle ever since he landed awkwardly while attempting to run out a base hit on Thursday. He’s questionable Monday.  Utility player Ehire Adrianza has filled in for Acuna as the starting right fielder and leadoff hitter since.

It’s Max Fried (1-1, 6.55) on the mound Monday.  Fried allowed just one run and two hits over six innings last Wednesday against the Blue Jays. Fried has given up two runs in 11 innings since coming off the IL last week, lowering his ERA from 11.45 to 6.55. Fried is 3-1 with a 2.88 ERA in 50 career innings vs. the Mets.

Expert Prediction

  • Braves 5, Mets 4

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