Washington vs San Diego MLB Game Predictions & Betting Odds

Washington vs San Diego | MLB Game Predictions & Betting Odds

Written by on August 18, 2022

The only late-night start on Thursday’s MLB schedule features the Washington Nationals at the San Diego Padres, who are easily the biggest favorites on the board and could close near -400 against the worst team in baseball.

How to Bet Nationals at Padres MLB Odds & TV Info

Why Bet on Washington?

DH Nelson Cruz hit his 458th career homer earlier this week. He is now four home runs shy of tying Jose Canseco and Adam Dunn for 37th place on MLB’s all-time home run list. The Nationals are now 20-13 when Cruz records at least one RBI this year.

Keibert Ruiz ranks second in Major League Baseball with 17 catcher caught stealing behind Philadelphia catcher J.T. Realmuto (18). Ruiz has picked off four runners at first base, tied for the most in Major League Baseball with Colorado’s Elias Diaz. The four pickoffs are tied for the most in a single season in Nationals history (2005-pres.) with Brian Schneider in 2005. At the plate, Ruiz ranks tied for third in the National League with a 12.1% strikeout rate.

It’s veteran journeyman Anibal Sanchez on the mound here for the Nats. Sanchez (0-5) Sanchez allowed three runs on six hits and three walks while striking out four batters over five innings in a no-decision against San Diego last Saturday.

Sanchez wasn’t sharp as he threw only 57 of 98 pitches for strikes and tied a season high with three walks. He served up multiple homers for the fourth time in six starts but also tied his best mark this season by giving up three runs. Sanchez has yet to pick up a victory, but he did avoid taking his sixth straight loss. He has an ugly 7.20 ERA and 1.60 WHIP over six starts.

The days of Sánchez posting double-digit win seasons and pitching in playoff rotations may be over, but the 38-year-old has still been able to leave his mark on this year’s Nats team. In addition to holding his spot in the rotation, Sanchez has given pointers to younger pitchers such as Josiah Gray and Cory Abbott while also spending lots of time working with young catcher and fellow Venezuelan Ruiz, an important piece of the Nats’ future.

“I love having him. He’s great in the clubhouse, great with the young kids,” Manager Dave Martinez said of Sánchez. “He’s great for our catchers, Keibert, talks to Keibert a lot … So he’s been awesome.”

Why Bet on San Diego?

Reliever Craig Stammen (shoulder) began throwing and playing catch to 90 feet last week and is expected to be available for the stretch run. A definite timeline for Stammen’s return has yet to be established, but his increased activity suggests that the right-hander should be able to return this season. He hasn’t seen game action in over five weeks, so he’ll likely need significant time to ramp up once he begins throwing from a mound again. Stammen posted a 3.34 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 27:5 K:BB over 32.1 innings prior to hitting the injured list.

By way of wRC+, the San Diego offense has been exactly average. Their mark of 100 there is tied with four other teams and sits in exactly the middle of the National League. They do, however, sit in the bottom half of the league in average, slugging percentage, and ISO. Where they do excel is in the on-base game, as their OBP ranks 10th in the league (.318), largely thanks to a 9.2 BB% that sits seventh.  The Padres have been shut out six times this year. Three of those occurred in a 10-day stretch in April. The other three have occurred in a 10-day stretch this month.

Fernando Tatis Jr. has been suspended for the rest of 2022 and part of 2023. Top prospect CJ Abrams has been traded for Juan Soto. So, Ha-Seong Kim will continue as the Padres’ primary shortstop for a while longer. Kim has been worth 2.6 wins above replacement, according to FanGraphs. Baseball-Reference puts him at 3.2 WAR, 10th among major-league shortstops. Kim remains limited against major-league pitching, but he has compensated by making himself into an uncommon fielder. Kim is tied for 15th in the majors in Defensive Runs Saved (DRS). He is tied for 21st in outs above average (OAA). He is sixth in Ultimate Zone Rating.

“You look at any defensive metrics, and it says the same thing,” manager Bob Melvin said. “Sometimes you look at different ones, and some things don’t match up. For him, it’s quality all the time.”

It’s Yu Darvish (10-6) on the mound. Darvish (10-6) took the loss against Washington last Saturday, pitching six-plus innings and allowing four runs on seven hits and one walk while striking out nine batters.

Darvish cruised through five scoreless frames before serving up a pair of sixth-inning homers that resulted in three runs. He came back out for the seventh and allowed a leadoff single to Cesar Hernandez before being pulled. When Hernandez eventually came around to score, Washington took the lead and Darvish was tagged with the loss. It was Darvish’s 15th straight start in which he has completed at least six innings. He’s posted a 2.93 ERA, 0.95 WHIP and 109:16 K:BB over 101.1 innings during that stretch.

Expert Prediction

  • Padres 5, Nationals 2
 
 

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