National League East Showdown: Washington Nationals vs. Atlanta Braves
The Washington Nationals and Atlanta Braves will continue their four game series on Wednesday night at our Nation’s capital. The two NL East rivals played a doubleheader on Tuesday, with each team winning a game. The Nationals won the first game of the doubleheader 8-3, while the Braves won the finale, 3-1.
Both the Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves trail the Philadelphia Phillies in the National League East. Atlanta entered this series just 1 game out of the top spot, while the Nationals came into the series with a 5.5 game deficit. Both teams also have a shot of reaching the playoffs as a National League Wild Card team in 2018. The Atlanta Braves are +110 against the Nationals on Wednesday night.
Harper Heating Up For Nationals
Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper is starting to heat up for the Nationals and it couldn’t come at a better time. Harper won the 2018 T-Mobile Home Run Derby and it appears to have given him momentum heading into the second half of the season. The former MVP blasted a homer in the first game of the doubleheader on Tuesday to power the Nationals to a victory. The Nationals need Harper to play at an MVP level if they are going to reach the 2018 playoffs.
Veteran Tommy Milone will make the start for the Nationals on Wednesday night. Millone has taken Stephen Strasburg’s spot in the rotation and has pitched well for Washington since being called up from Triple-A Syracuse. Milone was originally drafted by the Nationals, and will now be counted on to provide quality starts for them down the stretch.
Foltynewicz Makes Start For Atlanta
The ace of the Atlanta Braves staff, Mike Foltynewicz, will make the start on Wednesday night. Foltynewicz is having a great 2018 season for Atlanta, but has been getting up and down results of late. He brings an 8-7 record into this start, but has a sparkling earned run average of 3.04. Foltynewicz pitched a complete game two-hit shutout against the Nationals back on June 1, and will look for the same type of result in this game.
The Braves have a trio of players who could all be considered for the National League MVP Award this season. Veterans Freddie Freeman and Nick Markakis are having the best seasons of their careers for the Braves in 2018. Young Ozzie Albies is having a breakthrough season for Atlanta, and has provided a spark at the top of the lineup. The Braves have a great shot of reaching the 2018 playoffs, but must pile up wins in the next two months.
Atlanta Wins in Washington
Both the Braves and Nationals need every win they can get, but neither team has been able to go on a huge run to overtake the Phillies. Washington has been the hotter team since the All-Star Break, but they also had a lot of ground to make up. The Braves have been consistent all season long, but need to kick it into another gear if they want to reach the playoffs.
With Foltynewicz pitching on Wednesday night, the Braves have the clear advantage in this game. Bet the Atlanta Braves +110 over the Washington Nationals on Wednesday.