Miami Marlins vs San Diego Padres: MLB Prediction
We shifted over to NBA last night, and it didn’t pay off. We took the spread with the Philadelphia 76ers, and they were hammered by the Miami Heat once again. I grossly underestimated the power Doc Rivers has to completely ruin a rotation. Georges Niang, who was one of the only successful players for Philadelphia, also struggled with foul troubles. We’re shifting back over to MLB tonight, specifically on DraftKings Sportsbook. I’m avoiding bullpens in this game, as we’re solely going to be looking at the first five innings in the Miami Marlins vs San Deigo Padres game.
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The Miami Marlins have been one of the biggest surprises of the MLB season thus far, ranking second in the NL with a 12-12 record. On the other side of this game, the San Diego Padres have been extremely impressive, boasting a 16-9 record thus far.
These offenses have been extremely similar over the last two weeks. Over that span, they sit eighth (Miami) and ninth (San Diego) in the league in team wOBA. The Marlins have been slightly more consistent while the Padres have been a bit more powerful.
We see a similar trend against each opponent's starting pitcher's handedness. Miami quietly ranks sixth in the MLB with a .729 OPS against right-handed pitching. On the other side, San Diego ranks eighth with a .739 OPS against left-handed pitching. Essentially, these offenses cancel each other out at the moment.
The major difference between these teams will be the starting pitchers. Jesus Luzardo’s always been an outstanding prospect, and he looks to be in the midst of an MLB breakout this season. I’m fully behind this breakout, as everything suggests it will continue at this point.
Luzardo boasts a 2-1 record with a 3.10 ERA through 4 starts. He also boasts a 2.69 xFIP, suggesting that he’s actually throwing slightly better than his ERA shows. Furthermore, his velocity is up slightly and he’s throwing his slider at the highest rate of his career. This has been his best pitch of the season, and it’s resulted in elite 34.1% strikeout and 14% swinging-strike rates.
Nick Martinez will take the mound for San Diego. He’s struggled this season with a 1-2 record and a 4.12 ERA through 4 starts. He’s also struggled with a 4.63 xFIP, which has been the case throughout his entire career. Surprisingly, a small change in pitch mix has resulted in significantly better strikeout and swinging-strike rates. I don’t fully expect those to be sustainable, and Martinez’s struggled as a starter throughout his entire career.
Essentially, I’m eliminating bullpens from the equation. I’m backing a significantly better arm against two similar offenses at this point in time. We’re backing Luzardo and Miami in this situation.
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