Braves vs. Brewers NLDS Game 1 Picks and Betting Analysis

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Charlie Morton #50 of the Atlanta Braves. Adam Hagy/Getty Images/AFP

Drawing the least amount of interest of the four LDS games on Friday’s sports betting card, the Atlanta Braves travel to one of their former hometowns to take on the Milwaukee Brewers.

Atlanta Braves vs. Milwaukee Brewers

Friday, October 8, 2021 – 4:37 PM EDT at American Family Field

The Braves called Milwaukee home from 1953 through 1965, and if any fans are left from that era – besides former commissioner Bud Selig – it’s got to be a bit of a surreal experience seeing this Atlanta team come to town for the first-ever playoff meeting between the franchises. Updated MLB futures odds have the Braves tagged as the biggest underdogs among the eight teams left to win the World Series, the Brewers a consistent sixth on the list.

Atlanta turns to veteran Charlie Morton (14-6, 3.34) to get the postseason started while Corbin Burnes (11-5, 2.43) is on tap for Milwaukee. The best online betting sites have the Brewers -150 or so with a 7-run total priced to the ‘over.’

Braves’ 88 Wins Fewest Among Playoff Teams

These Braves have a long way to go to reach the same dynastic level Atlanta enjoyed in the 90s and early aughts, but winning four consecutive NL East titles is a good start. They wallowed below .500 through July before catching fire in August, then turned the jets back on down the stretch with 12 wins over the final 14 games. Much of the credit goes to an offense that finished third in the NL in scoring, second in home runs, and third in OPS.

Morton and his fellow Atlanta pitchers also did their jobs by turning in the National League’s 4th-lowest ERA (3.88) and 5th-best WHIP (1.24). He missed a chance to lead the club in wins when manager Brian Snitker only let Morton work into the third of last Sunday’s 5-0 win at home over the Mets, Atlanta closing as -165 chalk on the MLB betting odds in the season finale. In eight no-decisions that ended up Atlanta losses, Morton hurled quality starts while posting a 2.93 ERA.

In Morton’s only matchup with the Brewers, the right-hander turned in six innings of 2-run baseball only to take the loss in a 2-1 Milwaukee triumph. Morton is making his 13th postseason start and owns a 3.38 ERA in the previous 12 plus a relief appearance.

Brew Crew Staff Third in NL with 3.50 ERA

It’s a good thing the Brewers built up a large cushion in the NL Central since they stumbled the last couple of weeks and dropped 10 of their last 14. Milwaukee had the misfortune to play a red-hot St. Louis team twice, and the Cardinals accounted for six of those losses with three more in a sweep at Los Angeles over the final weekend. It took players like Avisail Garcia and Willy Adames stepping up with nice campaigns just to make the Brewers a middling NL lineup.

A strong mound corps that ranked third in the NL with a 3.50 ERA and led the Senior Circuit with over 1,600 strikeouts also helped. Burnes turned in a fine September with a 2.42 ERA across four assignments, all four going into Milwaukee’s win column as well as his eight starts before that. That streak came to an end last Saturday in LA against the Dodgers, Burnes charged with three runs and lasting just two innings of an 8-3 setback as a +135 underdog at YouWager.

Burnes’ worst start of the season arguably came against the Braves in Atlanta near the end of July. The 26-year-old was charged with five runs in his four innings of work, but Milwaukee hitters took Burnes off the hook with a 9-5 victory. The two Atlanta hitters to give him headaches are Dansby Swanson (4-5, 2 HR) and Joc Pederson (4-8, HR).

Roof to be Closed in Milwaukee

Atlanta and Milwaukee split their six matchups during the regular season, with the visitors posting the winning MLB score in four of the contests. In the May series at the former Miller Park in Milwaukee, two of the three games went ‘over’ totals in the 7½-8 range, leaving nine of the last 14 on the diamond sailing past the scoreboard targets.

Alfonso Marquez heads up the umpire crew for this series and has assigned himself to call balls and strikes in Game 3. At the dish, Friday will be Mike Estabrook, the 16-year veteran making his first playoff plate assignment after working to a 13-17-1 O/U/P record in the regular season. Mike Muchlinski, Tony Randazzo, Will Little, and Quinn Wolcott fill out the crew.

There’s rain in the Friday afternoon forecast for Milwaukee, but the decision had already been made to close the roof. This free MLB pick simply comes down to which side was playing better baseball down the stretch.

MLB Pick: Braves +140 with YouWager (visit our YouWager Review)

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Braves +140
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.