Happy Max Scherzer Day!
Scherzer has dealt with a series of injuries this season, but he seems to be back to 100% for this Friday afternoon matchup with the Padres.
That’s huge, as the Padres will not back away from this challenge.
Let’s dive into the starting lineups, betting odds, and my predictions for this Sunday afternoon matchup at PetCo Park.
San Diego Padres vs New York MetsOdds
100-200 words on the odds and how you think the game will play out
With Scherzer on the mound, you can bet that the Mets will be favored.
But the question is, are the Mets overvalued in this situation? Yu Darvish is a solid pitcher and shouldn’t be too disrespected in the betting markets.
The wind is projected to be blowing straight out to center field at about 7mph during game time, which makes me lean towards the over. But I’m not sure if I’m willing to bet it at the current number.
San Diego Padres Starting Lineup
Y. Darvish R
8-4 3.41 ERA
LF J. Profar S
2B J. Cronenworth L
3B M. Machado R
DH L. Voit R
C J. Alfaro R
1B E. Hosmer L
SS H. Kim R
RF N. Mazara L
CF T. Grisham L
San Diego Padres vs Max Scherzer
Who else but Max Scherzer?
He’s made 11 starts this season and has shut down every team he’s seen, pitching to a 2.22 ERA and a 2.90 xFIP over 11 starts so far. Scherzer is as good as ever. His fastball is up to par in terms of velocity, his slider is still forcing Whiffs (at a 48% rate).
Scherzer isn’t going away. He’s struck out 31 batters in his last 19 innings pitched while walking just one in the meantime. It may have been just the Cubs, Braves, and Reds, but all three appearances were on the road and all three appearances ended in utter destruction.
Scherzer will be facing a San Diego lineup that is desperate to hang on in the Wildcard spot.
It’s mostly been the pitching staff, although Manny Machado has batted to a 158 OPS+ so far this season. But behind Machado and the rest of the lineup, the Padres have held on to a Wildcard spot.
New York Mets Starting Lineup
M. Scherzer R
6-1 2.22 ERA
CF B. Nimmo L
RF S. Marte R
SS F. Lindor S
1B P. Alonso R
DH J. McNeil L
3B E. Escobar S
LF M. Canha R
2B L. Guillorme L
C T. Nido R
New York Mets vs Yu Darvish
Yu Darvish is having one of his better seasons.
Darvish’s 3.41 ERA and 3.85 xERA are better than he’s posted over the last few seasons. He’s still the same cutter-heavy pitcher who tries to force ground balls, but he’s been moderately better at controlling the long ball this season.
I’m not sure what has happened to the strikeouts, considering Darvish has struck out over 10 batters per nine innings in nine straight seasons with the Padres, Cubs, and Rangers. Although strikeouts are down across the league, so I am not totally surprised.
The Mets continue to drive in runs despite their lackluster batted-ball profile. New York punishes bad defenses by just putting balls in play. The Mets also don’t strike out, with eight of the regular nine-man lineup having an OBP of at least .325.
San Diego Padres vs New York Mets Pick & Prediction
My picks: San Diego Padres ML (+160 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
I think the Mets are getting slightly overvalued with Scherzer on the mound. Scherzer has been near-perfect when not on the IL, but Darvish has been a very solid pitcher himself.
While the Padres have been struggling offensively, this line doesn’t accurately reflect the true-talent level of this roster.
I think this game is much closer to a coin flip than what others are putting it out to be. I’ll take the Padres in this one.