NLDS Game 2: St. Louis Cardinals vs Atlanta Braves: Preview & Prediction – 10/4/19

By: Trent Pruitt

I think the Braves would say that Game 1 was an absolute debacle. The fact that they weren’t able to finish off the Cardinals and take the 1-0 lead is likely going to be detrimental to their 2019 season. Now they’ll look to bounce back against red-hot Jack Flaherty – good luck.

Money Line: STL -120, ATL +110

Run Line: STL -1.5 (+140), ATL +1.5 (-160)

Over/Under: 8.5 (-110)

First Pitch: 3:37 CST, SunTrust Park, Atlanta, GA

St. Louis Cardinals

The Cardinals finally rallied and broke through for a pair of runs in the 8th to tie the game at 3’s when Paul Goldschmidt hit a solo shot and Matt Carpenter had a pinch hit RBI knock. The Redbirds racked up 4 more runs in the 9th and after a couple of bombs in the bottom of the 9th they took Game 1 by a score of 7-6. Today St. Louis has the opportunity to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the series as they send Jack Flaherty to the bump. Jack went 11-8 on the season but his ERA was 2.75 and his WHIP was .97 – wow. This next stat is unreal: since the all-star break, Flaherty has only allowed 10 earned runs over 15 starts (99.1 IP), that’s an ERA of 0.91 if my math checks out. 

Atlanta Braves

This is a must-win game for the Bravos – you don’t want to go to Busch Stadium down 2-0 in the series against veteran Adam Wainwright. So Atlanta will send out Mike Foltynewicz to try and get the job done. Folty has respectable stats over his 5 starts, allowing 5 earned runs over 30 innings but personally, I don’t think he’s a guy that should be throwing in this game. He has a 4.54 ERA on the season and when you look at the splits, it rises to 4.58 at home. We knew pitching was going to be a problem for the Braves entering the postseason but I certainly didn’t expect to see it be a factor this early. Why the hell are they not starting Soroka in either game 1 or 2? Unreal

Analysis & Prediction

I don’t like this game one bit. But the pick I’m going to make is taking the Cardinals on the money line. The statistics point to backing Flaherty and St. Louis at -120. It’s tough to weigh how much the emotional factors play into this game which is why I don’t like it. The Braves NEED to win this game so they will be playing with their backs against the wal. Ultimately, I’ll take a shot using the analytics at hand and go with St. Louis. They have a veteran presence that we saw last night (Carpenter RBI hit), a better bullpen, and the head-to-head matchups favor the Cards. On a normal day I would love the Cardinals but this is October and anything can happen.

Trent’s Record on MLB Playoff Picks

1-0 (+0.80 units). A $100 bettor is up $80.

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