Philadelphia vs. Atlanta, 09/02/2014 19:10 EDT, Score: 4 - 0

Money Line: -180 Atlanta

Sportsbook: Pinnacle

Result: Loss

This is a 6* BIG-CHALK CHOKE-OUT on the Atlanta Braves.

A struggling, but hungry home side will look to take advantage of a favorable pitching matchup and when the smoke does finally clear at the end of this one, I expect it to find a way to get the job done. Philadelphia would combine for a no-hitter in yesterday’s 7-0 win over the Braves, who have scored just a single run in three games while going 1 for 17 with runners in scoring position in the process. Atlanta will certainly be motivated, it sits only 1.5 games behind Milwaukee for the second NL wild-card spot and has a big opportunity to get untracked today against confirmed “gas can” Kyle Kendrick (7-11, 4.97 ERA) who has posted a poor 6.49 ERA over his last ten starts (note that Kendrick’s 10.00 ERA in the opening frames is the highest in MLB among pitchers with at least 20 starts). Unfortunately for Kendrick, a date vs. Atlanta is not what the doctor ordered to turn things around, he’s also just 1-2 with a ballooned 5.40 ERA in three starts vs. it so far this season. The home side has to be liking its chances today to snap the slide with Mike Minor (6-8, 4.70 ERA) taking the hill; Minor has quietly been turning his season around, he’s posted a 1.66 ERA while giving up nine hits over his last 21 2/3’s innings of work, while going 2-0. Most recently Minor would give up a single run off four scattered hits over seven frames in his team’s 6-1 win over the Mets on Thursday. I’m giving Minor the nod on the bump in this matchup and I definitely give the Braves the nod in the motivational/situational department and with those two crucial factors on our side, it makes this a price I can definitely live with paying; play on ATLANTA.

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