Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#4913 Atlanta Braves vs.
#4914 San Diego Padres
Sunday, September 26, 2021 at 4:10pm EDT
Written by Jordy

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The Atlanta Braves can complete the sweep in Sunday’s finale against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. The Rays are still locked in a fight to the finish for the NL East division with the Philadelphia Phillies. So every game counts in this series. After opening things up with a shutout victory, the Braves survived a 10-8 shootout against the Padres on Saturday. We’ll see if they can keep it up with Jesse Chavez starting at pitcher opposite of Padres righty Joe Musgrove.

Braves stage an epic comeback

Manny Machado tried to drop the mic on the Braves with a grand slam home run in the fifth inning of Saturday’s game, but then Atlanta picked it up and handed it right back to them in the sixth. It’s clear the Braves are in a dog fight with the Philadelphia Phillies right now for the NL East throne, and they were willing to dig deep in hopes of maintaining their lead.

So far, so good.

Veteran reliever Jesse Chavez would love less drama during his start on the mound on Sunday. This will only be his third start of the season against a Padres team with a middle-of-the-road offense. However, that offense was hotter than fish grease on Saturday. Chavez would be in trouble if the same bats show up to the finale.

The defense could show up as well. Atlanta clearly had a big night on Saturday, but the Padres are better than what they showed defensively. It’s a team with a top-10 slash line when playing at Petco Park this season (.225/.291/.380).

The Braves have to keep their offense rumbling ahead of another tough matchup.

Padres let one slip away

Playing spoiler isn’t going to be easy for the Padres in this series.

They were in position to run away with Saturday’s game after leading 7-3 at one point. And then the bats came alive for the Braves in the sixth inning. It was another one of those disappointing performances from a Padres team that’s had a season full of them this year.

They need a strong defensive stand from Joe Musgrove on Sunday. The Padres’ right-handed pitcher is throwing a 3.15 ERA in 171.1 innings of work. But he’ll be facing a top-10 run-scoring offense for the Braves that’s averaging 4.89 runs per game.

The Braves are also the third-best home run hitting team in the league, which could ultimately pose a problem for Musgrove. However, it’ll pose an even bigger problem if Atlanta fails to come away with a win on Saturday. The Padres are going to have to take this game away from the Braves. They aren’t just going to hand it over with a divisional title on the line.

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The Braves coming back to beat the Padres on Saturday night was a tone-setter performance in the NL East division. They showed some grit in their ability to fight back from a significant lead and still come away with a 10-8 victory.

It’s hard to believe Joe Musgrove would be capable of just stepping in and fixing everything when staring down the Braves’ offensive lineup. He’s actually pitching his worst month of baseball this season with a 2-1 record and 5.09 ERA. That’ll play into the hands of the frightening bats of a Braves team that’s still ranked top-10 in run-scoring offense.

They’ll find a way to make the necessary plays to pull ahead early before eventually leaving the Padres in the dust again. This game comes down to the mere fact that Atlanta will be the team that wants it more. There’s also the fact that the Braves are beating opposing teams with a plus-118 run differential. They aren’t just beating opponents. They’re beating them down.

Give me the Braves in this one.

Prediction: Atlanta Braves (-1.5)

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Joe Musgrove being on the ground will help the Padres tighten up defensively, but he still can’t save the bullpen from wilting down the stretch. The biggest issue with San Diego is there offense. They’re checking all of the boxes defensively with opponents averaging only 3.97 runs per game at Petco Park this season. So things are going to settle back down drastically after the offensive splash party from both teams on Saturday. The Braves are allowing an average 3.71 runs per game this season on the road. They won’t be easy to score on. Give me the under in this one.

Prediction: Under
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Written By Jordy McElroy , "Jordy"

Born in Germany and raised in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Jordy McElroy is a storyteller of sports, a sports betting enthusiast, and a semi-deep thinker. Being a New England Patriots fan means he's a six-time Super Bowl winner as well, which means you'd have to be a fool to ignore his advice. Prior to joining our team here at Winners & Whiners, Jordy’s work appeared on CNN.com, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, USA TODAY, and BJPenn.com. There are no beaches where he comes from -- just rolling hills, green valleys, and all the Sun Drop you can drink.