Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 11:10 AM EST.
1:10 PM EST. Situationally speaking, this looks to be a very good spot for the visitor. New York returns home from a 10-game trip against Washington, Cinci and finally Houston this past weekend. The Mets got to see first-hand the devastation in that area, which caused the opener to be postponed on Friday. As a result, the Mets and Astros played three games over the past two days that included Saturday’s double-header. The Mets lost all three games and now they’ll return home safe and sound to their friends and family after that aforementioned long and emotional trip that included seven games against contenders. Seeing what transpired in Houston had to mentally affect them in some manner too. The Mets will now play a meaningless series against the enthusiastic Phillies.
Rafael Montero was brilliant in his last start against the Reds in Cincinnati. He took a one-hit shutout into the ninth inning and New York held on for a 2-0 victory. It was without question Montero’s finest performance as a pro by a mile. Montero had struggled to produce any value in 2017 prior to that last start. In fact, he’s been hovering around a 5.00 ERA ever since he arrived in 2014. Dude was on fire last week and is coming off a fine August but we’re not ready to throw away three years of mediocrity prior. Montero will enter 2018 as an intriguing speculative target but coming off his best game ever might not be the right time to get behind him.
To put it kindly, Mark Leiter was a not much of a prospect—he was a 22nd round draft pick, and his fastball tops out in the high-80s. Thus, there are good reasons to be a little dubious of his success so far in the majors. However, we like his mound presence and we also like his increasing skills. Leiter’s fastball has averaged 91.2 MPH over his last five starts. He has struggled to log large strikeout numbers, however we could see those numbers rise, as August brought increased splitter usage, a pitch that gets nearly 24% whiffs. Leiter had a 16% swing and miss rate in his last start. His swing and miss rate over his last five starts was 13%, which has led to 28 K’s over his last 28 frames against just six walks. He also has a ERA/xERA split over his last 35 innings of 3.34/3.91, which is also rock solid. 65 innings isn't enough to buy in just yet, but it's enough to justify backing him in this favorable spot against what figures to be a mentally and physically beat up Mets’ squad that has been using a “B” lineup ever since the trade deadline.
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Philadelphia +116 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.32)