Free MLB Picks: Our Best Bets for September 30

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Freddie Freeman #5 of the Atlanta Braves reacts after hitting a solo homer. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images/AFP

We preview Thursday’s National League East clash between the Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves, study the MLB odds and share our MLB picks.

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves

Thursday, September 30, 2021 – 07:20 PM EDT at Truist Park

The Phillies lost the first two games of this vital series but they still have slim postseason aspirations. They're 4.5 games behind the Braves in the National League East and they have to win this game or their season will be officially over. Philadelphia will give the ball to Kyle Gibson (3.77 FIP), while Ian Anderson (4.01 FIP) takes the hill for the Braves. On paper, this matchup favors the Braves, who are 12-11 in Anderson's 23 starts but they've lost 0.4 units. The Phillies are down 1.25 units on a 5-5 record in Gibson's 10 starts with them. Overall, Gibson's teams (the Rangers and Phillies) are a combined 15- 14 in his 29 starts this season, up 1.3 units.

Kyle Gibson (10-8, 3.60 ERA, 1.22 WHIP) can't wait for September to end, so far he's 0-3 with a 7.16 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP in five starts this month. Gibson gave up four earned runs on three hits with six strikeouts and two walks over six innings to get a no-decision in an 8-6 win against the Pirates last Friday.

Ian Anderson (8-5, 3.60 ERA, 1.24 WHIP) hasn't exactly been lights out this month either, going 2-0 with a 4.79 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP in four starts. Those numbers improved significantly after allowing just one earned run on two hits with eight strikeouts and one walk over seven innings in a 9-2 win against the Diamondbacks on September 22nd. Anderson has a 3.58 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP in 10 home starts this season.

Prediction

The Braves opened at -146 at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review), but over at FiveThirtyEight, they already have them at -150 based on our calculations (they suggest the Braves will win this game 60 percent of the time). The projections say there isn't much value on this Braves moneyline but the run line might be the way to go.

Atlanta's projected lineup has just two batters with a strikeout rate above 21 percent and the Phillies aren't exactly mashing the ball in the last 30 days:

  • .748 OPS, 14th-best
  • .321 wOBA, 14th-best
  • 99 wRC+, 17th-best
  • .175 ISO, 13th-highest

Gibson is 3-5 with a 4.29 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP in 16 road starts this season and the Philadelphia lineup will likely have four batters from the left side and one switch-hitter and lefties are hitting just .210 against Anderson in 219 at-bats this season. Also, the Phillies are hitting just .238 against right-handers this season.

MLB Pick: Braves -1 (-106) (ML -150, RL -1.5 (+135) ) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)

** -1 created with a run line calculator

Braves -1 (-106)
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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.