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MLB – Atlanta at San Diego

MLB – Atlanta at San Diego

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MLB – Atlanta at San Diego


2007-07-08

Two of the teams in the thick of the crowded National League playoff picture wrap up their key three game series, and the season’s first half when they meet on ESPN’s Sunday night baseball. The Padres went into the weekend set as the leaders in the West Division, albeit only by a half-game. The Braves meanwhile, have slipped of late and trailed in the wildcard race by four games. Regardless of how the first two games between the teams went, they’ll be looking to head into the all-star break on a good note.

San Diego sends Greg Maddux to the hill to be opposed by Kyle Davies. Maddux, who will of course be facing his long time mates from Atlanta, has been up and down this season and struggling to maintain consistency. Overall, he is 7-5 with a respectable WHIP of 1.261, but in his last outing, he was torched by Florida for 6 runs and 10 hits in 6-1/3 innings. In his first outing versus the Braves, he took a no decision opposite of John Smoltz, with his team on the short end of a 3-2 decision. Davies meanwhile, is simply holding on to a spot in the Braves’ rotation because of attrition. With Andrew Lerew and Smoltz on the disabled list, there’s no one available to step in for the erratic Davies, who is just 3-7 with a 1.56 WHIP in 15 starts.

The starting pitcher edge clearly goes to the Padres here, but if the Braves have anything going for them in Sunday’s contest, it is the fact that they have played well on the road (23-20 before Friday) and against the West Division (9-5). The Padres though, are 15-games over .500 vs. the National League and would be in a much more favorable position right now had it not been for their struggles in interleague play.

Keep these top totals trends in mind too when analyzing Sunday night’s contest:
* ATLANTA is 19-6 OVER (+13.1 Units) in road games against right-handed starters this season. The average score was ATLANTA 6.0, OPPONENT 5.0 - (Rating = 3*)
* ATLANTA is 24-5 OVER (+18.7 Units) in July games over the last 2 seasons. The average score was ATLANTA 6.8, OPPONENT 5.7 - (Rating = 4*)

With only 6.8 runs per game scored at Petco Park this season, and 63% of the games going UNDER the total, this might just be a perfect time to expect the unexpected…an OVER.
With the players anxiously awaiting the three-day break, look for the offenses to get it going tonight and take it over what should be a total set at around 7.5-8.5.

Of course, the Mets-Yankees clash will wrap up Sunday’s baseball board. Don’t forget about the other 14 afternoon games on the card. Stay on top of all the action with the Live
Odds link and Team Statistics pages on Sportsbook.com.


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