Washington Nationals (72-47; 56-58-5 O/U) vs. San Diego Padres (54-67; 64-51-6 O/U)
MLB: Saturday, August 19, 2017 at 8:40pm EST
Line: Washington -203/San Diego +188
The San Diego Padres and the Washington Nationals will continue a four game series Saturday night from Petco Park. The Nationals will give the call to 29-year old right-hander Stephen Strasburg, and the Padres will reply with 30-year old left-hander Travis Wood. The Nationals currently lead the season series 3-1.
Strasburg Makes Return from DL
Stephen Strasburg will make his 21st start of the season as he makes his return from a stint on the DL. Strasburg last started on July 23rd and exited with an injury after tossing two scoreless innings against the Diamondbacks. The hard-throwing right-hander is having another outstanding season, sporting a 3.25 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP accompanied with a 10-3 record in 121.2 innings of work. He took on the Padres in late May and hurled seven shutout innings and now features a 6-1 record with a stifling 2.93 ERA in seven career starts against San Diego. Yangervis Solarte is 1 for 8 against Strasburg, while Cory Spangenberg is 0 for 8, and Hunter Renfroe is 1 for 3. Howie Kendrick is one of the hottest Nationals hitters right now, bashing three home runs along with nine RBI’s over his last seven games. The 34-year old left fielder has bene productive since coming over in a trade with the Phillies, and is now hitting .344 with six home runs and 27 RBI’s on the season. Kendrick has driven in a total of 11 runs this month.
The Nationals dominant lineup is averaging 5.34 runs per game, good for second in the Majors, and are hitting .273 as a team. The Washington pitching features a 3.98 team ERA, ranking them seventh in the Major Leagues.
Wood Seeks First Victory of Month
Travis Wood will make his 33rd start and eighth appearance of the season, aiming for his first win since July 28th. Wood was solid in his latest effort, holding the Phillies to two runs in five innings, and finished with the no decision. Overall, the veteran left-hander is having a rough season, posting a poor 6.46 ERA and a 1.69 WHIP accompanied with a 2-4 record in 62.2 innings of work. He has not had a whole lot of success in his nine appearances against the Nationals, allowing 12 runs in 19.1 innings. Cory Spangenberg is swinging a red hot bat, smashing four home runs along with ten RBI’s over his last eight games. The 26-year old third baseman is having a strong second half, and is currently hitting .277 with 12 home runs and 43 RBI’s. Spangenberg is 1 for 11 against the Nationals this season.
The Padres continue to struggle at the plate, averaging a Major League low 3.85 runs per game, and are hitting .235 as a team. The San Diego pitching is carrying a 4.67 team ERA, positioning them 22nd overall.
The Washington Nationals are:
- 5-0 in their last 5 games against a left-handed starter.
- 6-1 in Strasburg’s last 7 starts.
- 7-1 in their last 8 in the third game of a series.
The San Diego Padres are:
- 1-6 in their last 7 home games against a team with a road winning percentage above .600.
- 1-4 in their last 5 games in the third game of a series.
I am taking the Nationals on the run line in this contest. Strasburg has completely dominated the Padres, he tossed seven shutout innings against them this season, and now features a 6-1 record with a 2.93 ERA in his seven career starts against San Diego, so I can’t see the Padres mounting any offense. Furthermore, Wood has allowed 12 runs in in his last three starts (15 innings), so the Nationals should have no problem putting runs on the board, and they should take this by a couple of runs.
Pick: Washington Nationals -1.5
Strasburg has dominated the Nationals throughout his career, and Wood has pitched well at Petco Park. The Padres lineup is hitting a combined .117 against Strasburg, and he owns a stifling 2.37 ERA on the road this season, plus the under is 6-1 in the Nationals last seven road games against a team with a losing record. Wood has only allowed four runs in 11 innings pitched at Petco Park this season, so I am confident he can at least limit the damage, and the under is 3-0-1 in the last 4 meetings between these two teams.