The Atlanta Braves and New York Mets meet Monday in the finale of a four-game series at Turner Field, their seventh head-to-head matchup already in this shortened season. Atlanta is in position for a four-game sweep thanks to 5-3 and 6-3 wins before a 4-0 Sunday win on national TV. The pitching matchup is a rematch of the season opener with the Mets sending ace RHP Jacob deGrom against Atlanta’s RHP Mike Soroka.
Atlanta has the season advantage with a 5-1 lead, including five straight wins, three in this series. Last year the Braves won the NL East and went 11-8 against the Mets, including a 6-4 mark in Atlanta. The teams won’t meet again in 2020 until September 18-20 in New York.
NY Mets Outlook: Support the ace
The Mets have lost the first three games of the series with just six runs and are now without slugger Yoenis Cespedes who missed Sunday’s game and opted out of the remainder of the season. Cespedes won the July 24th game with a solo homer in the bottom of the seventh, his first since the 2018 season.
DeGrom is 0-1 on the season with a 1.64 ERA in two starts, and he has already racked up 12 strikeouts on the season without run support. Last time out, he took a loss against Boston though he allowed just two runs on three hits over six innings in a quality start. He was 1-2 with a 2.59 ERA in four starts against the Braves last year with 47 strikeouts and five homers allowed over 31 innings of work.
The Mets are 3-7 in the young season. Robinson Cano leads the way with a .393 average and four RBI while Michael Conforto is batting .313 with three RBI. OF J.D. Davis has two homers and six RBI with a .320 average, but the pitching staff has a 5.63 ERA and has allowed 13 home runs.
Atlanta Braves Outlook: Score Early
The Braves lead the NL East at 7-3, four-more wins than any other team in the division. Atlanta leads the NL in runs scored at 53 despite batting just 239 as a team. Atlanta’s hitters lead the league in doubles (21) and are fifth with 11 home runs.
Soroka is 0-0 on the season with a 1.99 ERA in two starts. He took a no-decision in Atlanta’s 7-4 win against Tampa Bay on Wednesday, allowing two earned runs on four hits over 5 1/3 innings. Last year he was 3-0 with a 2.43 ERA against the Mets while striking out 20 batters in 29 2/3 innings.
Shortstop Dansby Swanson is off to a great start with a .382 average, two homeruns, and a team-high 11 RBI. Newcomer Marcell Ozuna leads the Braves with three homers and is batting .367 with three doubles and six RBI. The bullpen has been fantastic with a league-high three saves, two from closer Mark Melancon.
New York Yankees/Atlanta Braves Betting Lines
Atlanta Braves +1.5 (-164) to win: +104
New York Mets -1.5 (+138) to win: -122
Over/Under: 7.5 runs (O -118, U -104)
Soroka and deGrom went head-to-head on July 24 with the Mets winning 1-0, and last year they faced each other in June with the Braves winning 6-2. While deGrom has allowed seven homers to current Braves hitters, OF Pete Alonso and Cano have great numbers against Soroka. The Mets have lost more of deGrom’s starts the last three seasons than they have won, despite his Cy Young credentials.