After a 4-2 triumph on Saturday night, the Atlanta Braves (90-45) are just one win away from an impressive four-game sweep over the Los Angeles Dodgers (83-52) in their potential NLCS preview. First pitch of Sunday’s finale from Dodger Stadium is set for 4:10 p.m. ET. Atlanta will give the ball to veteran Charlie Morton (14-10, 3.29 ERA), while rookie righty Bobby Miller (8-3, 4.00) goes for Los Angeles.
This one is nearly a pick ‘em on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook, with the Braves at -115 and the Dodgers at -105. The run total is set at 9.
Braves-Dodgers picks: Sunday, September 3
Out: SP Kyle Wright (shoulder), SP Kolby Allard (shoulder), RP Nick Anderson (shoulder), RP Yonny Chirinos (elbow), RP Jesse Chavez (shin), OF Sam Hilliard (heel), RP Daysbel Hernandez (forearm), SS Ehire Adrianza (elbow)
Out: SP Walker Buehler (elbow), DH J.D. Martinez (groin), RP Joe Kelly (forearm), SS Gavin Lux (knee), SP Michael Grove (lat), OF Jake Marisnick (hamstring), RP Yency Almonte (knee)
Charlie Morton vs. Bobby Miller
Morton ended August on an absolute heater, going 4-0 with just a single run allowed in 24 innings across his last four starts of the month. He’s struck out 10, 11 and eight over the last three of those outings, with his curveball doing work (.175 BA against, 41.3% whiff rate for the season). The righty’s command has come and gone a bit this season, but when he’s not getting into trouble with his fastball, the curve is just about unhittable.
Miller’s been a bit inconsistent in his first MLB season — as you’d expect from a rookie in the middle of a playoff chase — but the former top prospect has big-time potential, with a fastball that can run up to triple digits and two very good breaking balls (when he has the feel for them, anyway). The righty has allowed four runs in each of his last two starts, going 6.1 innings in a loss to the Guardians and six innings in a win over the Diamondbacks earlier this week. He’d allowed just two earned runs over his first three starts of August prior to that, though.
We’ve seen 15, nine and six runs over the first three games of this series, with decreasing totals each time. The Braves have very quietly put up a just-okay 101 team wRC+ against right-handed pitching over the last two weeks — rookie Emmet Sheehan allowed just one run over four innings on Saturday — and with the way Morton’s rolling right now, I’m hammering the under again.
Pick: Under 9
Miller’s inconsistency just spooks me a bit too much; the righty has lost his feel for the strike zone — and the ability to command his slider and curve — too often so far this season, and those mistakes could do him in against Atlanta today.
Pick: Braves -115