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It hasn’t been the type of season that both the Miami Marlins and Washington Nationals have hoped up to this point. However, this NL East matchup pits two teams looking to right the ship and build some momentum toward making a strong run through the rest of the season.
Nationals hoping to make playoff push
The Nationals have gotten off to a rough start out of the gate in the first half of the season being outside the playoff picture in the National League. It has seen them fall out of contention in the NL East as they are eight games behind the Braves for the division lead while sitting under the .500 mark altogether. They have gone through tough stretches, but have pushed forward to win seven out of their last 10 games played that has them building momentum ahead of the All-Star break. Washington has finally appeared to be on the right track toward making a possible push toward contending for one of the wildcard spots trailing the Colorado Rockies and Philadelphia Phillies by 2.5 games for the second wildcard position heading into Wednesday’s game. This has seen their bats pick it up this month currently ranked 11th in runs scored and home runs, and third in slugging percentage.
Juan Soto in 116 games in 2018:
– The Greatest Teenage Hitter in @MLB History™
– 1 triple
– 5 steals
Juan Soto in 66 games in 2019:
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) June 23, 2019
Washington has been led offensively by the bat of All-Star third baseman Anthony Rendon, who has provided a strong source of production as he’s batting .306 with seven home runs, 19 RBI, and 16 runs scored in 20 games played this month. This has helped push Rendon’s strong season to the next level as he’s batting .314 with 17 home runs, 53 RBI, and a 1.037 OPS on the season. Rendon has been their primary source of production on the season as he’s on pace to put together a career-best campaign. He has also been effective against the Marlins this season in 19 at-bats where holds .316 batting average with a home run, four RBI, and .458 on-base percentage. Rendon’s hot bat could present plenty of problems for Gallen in his second career start. Meanwhile, the Nationals are sending left-hander Patrick Corbin to the mound as he holds a 6-5 record with a 3.90 ERA in 15 starts this season. Corbin has had his struggles in the last month but pitched well in his lone outing this year against the Marlins throwing a complete game shutout giving up just four hits in the win. Given Miami’s struggles and them throwing an inexperienced arm on the mound seems to sway things in Washington’s direction.
Marlins plagued by offensive woes
The Marlins have continued to work through what has been a difficult season that has pushed them well out of the playoff picture entirely up through this point in the first half of the year. They have had their issues flare up along the way with much of the laying with their lack of true offensive production this season that has seen them rank as one of the least effective teams at the plate. The Marlins are currently 29th in runs scored, 25th in total hits and doubles, last in home runs, 24th in batting average, and last in slugging percentage. It has been a complete struggle for them to put runs on the boards that have dug them in this tough spot of being 15.5 games out of the top spot in the NL East that is currently held by the Atlanta Braves. The Marlins atrocious amount of production has only continued to hamper them as the season has worn and put more pressure on their pitching staff to try to pick up the slack in the process. It has seen them rely on young talent in the process that has seen right-hander Zac Gallen get called up earlier this month.
.@ANDERSONCOOPER. 🗣Back 🗣To 🗣Back.
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) June 23, 2019
Gallen was strong in his brief outing in his MLB debut as he threw five innings giving up just one run on five hits in the 7-6 win at home over the St. Louis Cardinals. However, it is an inexperienced arm that the Marlins are relying on that could struggle in his second outing against the Nationals on Wednesday night. This could present a stiff challenge as Gallen threw 99 pitches in his debut that included walking a pair of batters while inducing 10 fly ball outs. What could hurt him is the lack of offensive production from the Marlins that may make it difficult for them to give the rookie right-hander the run support needed to move past Washington at home. All of this will simply come down to Gallen being able to get the necessary run support behind him to help Miami get past the Nationals.
- Marlins are 1-4 in their last five home games against a team with a losing record.
- Marlins are 1-4 in their last five games against a team with a losing record.
- Marlins are 2-8 in their last 10 home games.
- Nationals are 4-0 in their last four road games against a right-handed starter.
- Nationals are 4-1 in Corbin’s last five starts during Game 2 of a series.
- Nationals are 4-1 in Corbin’s last five starts against National League East.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Gallen is coming off a strong first start of his major-league career, but it may be a tough task to repeat that type outing. What could work against him is the Marlins’ lack of offensive production against the Nationals. It should also be noted that Washington is 25-9 in the last 34 meetings.
Prediction: Washington -140
Full-Game Total Pick
The Nationals appear to hold the edge offensively while going up against an inexperienced pitcher in Gallen. Meanwhile, the Marlins are one of the least productive offenses in the majors. The under is also 5-2 in the last seven meetings in Miami between both ballclubs.
Prediction: Under 7.5