The Miami Marlins are at home Friday and are poised to take a rare victory in a contest against the San Diego Padres. Despite being baseball’s worst team, the Marlins have played surprisingly well in June, posting a 13-9 record (including three straight wins) coming into this game. They also have a motivated pitcher starting for them.
Ricky Nolasco has been at the center of trade talks and there’s little doubt that he’d rather be playing on a contending club. A good outing here will help his trade value and, likely, speed up his departure.
Already Nolasco has thrown well this year. In 16 starts he has a sturdy 3.68 ERA. He’s pitched particularly well as of late. In his last two games he possesses a 2.84 ERA. His pitching opponent Edinson Volquez has been miserable in road contests.
In eight games away from San Diego he has a 6.70 ERA. Overall, his work in the past month has been equally as bad. In five starts he has a 6.84 ERA. Go with the Marlins for the upset at 1.80.
In Atlanta, the Braves’ dominance at home will continue in a match-up against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Braves have been world beaters at home, generating nearly a .700 winning percentage there.
Not surprisingly, the club’s starter Julio Teheran has tellingly home-road splits (3-1 with a 2.52 ERA at home; 2-3 with a 3.96 ERA away) that strongly suggest he’s better at Turner Field. While it was an away game, Teheran threw very well against the Diamondbacks in mid-May, giving up two runs in six innings pitched.
He should do even better at home. Arizona, who are in the midst of a long ten-game East Coast road trip, have seen their performance diminish. In the first two months of the season they were playing solidly above a .500 winning percentage. This month they’re hovering right at .500. Former Braves farmhand Randall Delgado will start for Arizona, so you know he’ll be motivated.
Still, in his only Big League start against a potent offensive lineup (Cincinnati Reds), he was roughed up for four runs in five innings pitched. Atlanta hasn’t scored as many runs per game at the Reds, but they are an above-average offence.
Best bet: Take the Braves at 1.61