The Atlanta Braves own the best record in MLB but also own a three-game losing streak and head home to face the Philadelphia Phillies with one of their stars dealing with an injury.
Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves (-125, 9)
The listed favorite at DraftKings to win MVP, Ronald Acuna Jr., was removed from Friday’s game due to a calf injury and with the Braves having already clinched the National League East division title, it would not be surprising to see him get more rest than in a normal circumstance.
With or without Acuna, the Braves will look to duplicate what they did to Phillies starting pitcher Zack Wheeler a week ago when he allowed six runs in a game the Braves won 7-6.
Wheeler has had ups and downs throughout the season, but advanced metrics indicate a big end of the regular season and postseason could be in store for him, as he has a 3.17 fielding independent compared to his 3.70 ERA with 10.1 strikeouts per nine innings with one home run and 1.8 walks allowed per nine innings.
The Braves counter with Kyle Wright, who is making just his sixth pitching appearance of the season and his second since coming off the injured list.
Wright’s first start off the injured list was a start against this same Phillies team in which he allowed six runs in three innings in a 7-5 loss on September 11 and overall for the season, Wright has a 7.48 ERA with five walks per nine innings allowed.
Backing up Wright is a Braves bullpen that ranks ninth in ERA since the start of August and might be entering Monday a bit fatigued, with Braves starters going five innings or fewer in five of their last six games while the Phillies are fifth in this span.
Since August 2, the Phillies lead the league in home runs per game and are second behind the Braves in runs per game scored, but with the edge on the mound coupled with Acuna’s injury, the Phillies will make a statement on Monday with a road win.
The Play: Phillies +105