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The Atlanta Braves (61-33) find themselves in unfamiliar territory as they have lost four consecutive games and face the potential of being swept by the Arizona Diamondbacks (54-42) on Thursday. On Tuesday, the Braves and the Diamondbacks engaged in an offensive firepower that total 26 runs and 27 hits.
On Thursday, the Diamondbacks will start their ace pitcher Zac Gallen (3.14 ERA in 123.1 innings pitched) against the slumping Braves. While the Braves are coming off a bad offensive performance where they only accounted for four hits in the 5-3 loss, the Braves are not likely to continue another bad batting performance.
Gallen has allowed 107 total hits in 20 games started for Arizona this season. Atlanta, this season, ranks second in the NL in hits accounted for this season (861).
While Gallen is likely set to lead the Diamondbacks to victory over the Braves and complete the sweep, the Braves are not going down without a fight as they account for a big batting performance.
The Cincinnati Reds (51-46) have not started the second half of the 2023 MLB Season strong. The Reds dropped their first five games of the second half of the season including all three games versus the Milwaukee Brewers and the first two games versus the San Francisco Giants. They were able to win on Wednesday against the Giants 3-2 with the final game being played on Thursday.
The Reds should feel good about their chances to even the series 2-2 and defeat the Giants on Thursday with their starting rookie pitcher Andrew Abbott (2.45 ERA in 47.2 innings pitched) at the mound. Abbott has delivered 51 strikeouts in eight games started this season.
The Giants, who have seen some success at the plate this season, tend to strike out early and often. San Francisco has struck out the fourth-most times this season (900) as they also strike out more than any other team in the NL.
Cincinnati will need their batting game to kick into gear to help contribute to the big win over the Giants. Abbott will at least help give bettors good earnings by likely delivering six strikeouts against the Giants.
The Chicago White Sox (40-57) and the New York Mets (45-50) are set to conclude the three-game series in New York on Thursday. The Mets have a chance to complete a sweep, which might be the push that the team needs after a disastrous first half of the 2023 MLB Season.
New York is set to take on one of the worst pitching teams in the league in the White Sox, who are set to start Michael Kopech (4.47 ERA in 86.2 innings pitched) at the mound. The White Sox are ranked 13th in the AL in ERA (4.62), 10th in hits allowed (794), 13th in runs allowed (475), 14th in home runs allowed (133) and 14th in walks allowed (375).
Batters for like Jeff McNeil for the Mets could have a big performance against a horrible pitching team like the White Sox. McNeil is second on the Mets in hits accounted for (84) and could have a multiple-hit performance on Thursday.
One of the top games on Thursday is set for game one of the first series between the Baltimore Orioles (58-37) and the Tampa Bay Rays (60-39) in Tampa Bay. This is a potential preview of the ALCS, which will have the batters and the pitchers giving their all in this matchup.
One of the most reliable bets in this game is the over of hits for Tampa Bay Rays All-Star left-fielder Randy Arozarena. His mark is set at 0.5 hits in this game, which isn’t usually a problem for him to accomplish. Arozarena is third on the team in hits accounted for (93).
The Rays will also have the edge in the pitching game as the Orioles will start Kyle Gibson (4.77 ERA in 115 innings pitched), who is their most experienced pitcher this season, but not their most experienced. This game will bring the most out of the talented batting team of both teams, including the Rays and Arozarena.
One of the best and most likeliest bets for users to place bets on is the pitcher facing one of the worst teams in baseball. The final game of the Thursday slate will be the Houston Astros (53-43) going on the road to face the Oakland Athletics (27-71), the team with the worst record in the MLB.
The Astros will be going with J.P. France (3.31 ERA in 70.2 innings pitched) as their starting pitcher for the game against the Athletics. France is one of the most efficient pitchers for the Astros this season. Through 12 games started, France has delivered 50 strikeouts this season.
The Athletics remain one of the worst batting teams in the league as they rank third in the MLB in total strikeouts encountered (903). They are likely going to have serious problems trying to find consistency at the plate against France. Getting six strikeouts against a terrible team like the Athletics shouldn’t be a problem.
Michael Hanich is a sports journalist/analyst with a wide variety of experience in the newspaper and digital field. He has a love for all sports. The leagues that he covers are College Football, the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, College Basketball (men’s and women’s), the MLB, Lacrosse, Volleyball, and the WNBA.More info on Michael Hanich
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