Washington Nationals at St. Louis Cardinals odds, picks and predictions
The Washington Nationals (47-87) travel to the Gateway City to face the St. Louis Cardinals (79-55) Monday in the opener of a 4-game set at Busch Stadium. First pitch is set for 4:15 p.m. ET. Let's analyze Tipico Sportsbook's lines around the Nationals vs. Cardinalsodds with MLB picks and predictions.
Season series: Cardinals lead 2-1
Washington stunned the New York Mets by identical 7-1 scores Saturday and Sunday. Don't look now, but the Nats have won 4 of 5 games as they attempt to slow down the surging Cards. The Nationals have had solid starting pitching and 5 scoreless IP from their bullpen across their last 2 games.
St. Louis is coming off a magical 3-game sweep of the Chicago Cubs. Tied 0-0 in the 8th inning Sunday, DH Albert Pujols stepped up to the plate with 1st base open. The Cubs elected to pitch to him, and he hit a monstrous 2-run homer over the bullpen in left field for career No. 695.
The Cardinals have won 4 games in a row, 7 of 8 and 23 of 30. They receive another boost as injured RHP Jack Flaherty returns from the IL Monday.
Nationals at Cardinals projected starters
RHP Anibal Sanchez vs. RHP Jack Flaherty
Sanchez (1-5, 5.05 ERA) makes his 10th start. He has a 1.32 WHIP, 4.1 BB/9 and 6.2 K/9 in 46 1/3 IP.
- Has a 1.10 ERA and 0.80 WHIP over his last 3 starts
- Allowed 6 ER on 6 H and 2 BB with 4 K in 5 2/3 IP against St. Louis July 29
Flaherty (0-0, 5.63 ERA) makes his 4th start. He has a 2.13 WHIP, 10.1 BB/9 and 6.8 K/9 in 8 IP.
- Threw 102 pitches in his final rehab start and will not be on a pitch limit
- In 5 rehab starts: 20 IP, 21 H, 8 ER, 7 BB and 25 K
Nationals at Cardinals odds and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 9 a.m. ET.
- Money line (ML) : Nationals +210 (bet $100 to win $210) | Cardinals -270 (bet $270 to win $100)
- Run line (RL)/Against the spread (ATS) : Nationals +1.5 (+102) | Cardinals -1.5 (-125)
- Over/Under (O/U) : 7.5 (O: -130 | U: +105)
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Nationals at Cardinals picks and predictions
Cardinals 5, Nationals 3
This is a dangerous game to handicap because the Cards are heavy favorites, and Flaherty hasn't been right all season. He missed the first half, and on his way back, he seemingly rushed his return and wasn't effective before re-injuring the shoulder.
The good news for the Cards is their bullpen is rested. We're staying away from the ML and First 5, though. The Cards have scored 5 or more runs in 7 of 10 games, and they'll probably need to do so again Monday.
Take the CARDINALS OVER 4.5 TOTAL RUNS (-130).
The Nats got one from the Cards back in D.C. in July, but that was a sloppy game with a lot of walks and a Cardinals bullpen implosion. The other 2 games weren't close, and the Nats hadn't traded OF Juan Soto and 1B Josh Bell yet.
Take the CARDINALS -1.5 (-125).
Flaherty is going to give up some runs. Sanchez is going to give up runs. The Nats scored 7 runs each of the last 2 days, and the Cards have scored 5 or more runs in 7 of 10. St. Louis is 6-3-1 O/U the last 10.
This one should go OVER 7.5 (-130).
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