Washington Nationals’ Trea Turner (7) bats during the fifth inning of a spring training baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals, Monday, March 15, 2021, in Jupiter, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
- There are 14 games on the MLB schedule on Tuesday, April 6th
- Season record: 6-6 with $74 profit (based on $100 wagered per unit)
- See predictions and best bets for Tuesday’s games within the article below
The Washington Nationals will finally get their season underway Tuesday afternoon when they host the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park, which highlights Major League Baseball’s 14-game schedule.
The Nationals had their first four games postponed because of a COVID-19 outbreak. Four players tested positive and seven more are under quarantine because of contact tracing.
None of the 11 will be available for Tuesday’s game.
The New York Yankees, with ace Gerrit Cole on the mound, are the day’s biggest favorites at -315 over the Baltimore Orioles and Dean Kremer.
April 6 MLB Picks
|Matchup||Pick and Odds at DraftKings||Units Risked|
|Braves vs Nationals||Braves +110||1 unit|
|Pirates vs Reds||Pirates +140||1 unit|
|White Sox vs Mariners||Under 7.5 (-104)||1 unit|
Odds as of April 6th.
Pick 1: Braves +110 (1 unit)
The Nationals have not announced who will be unable to play Tuesday. However, catchers Yan Gomes and Alex Avila, first baseman Josh Bell, second baseman Josh Harrison and shortstop Trea Turner were not on the field during the team workout Monday at Nationals Park while the media was permitted to watch.
The Nationals held a workout at their stadium as they prepare to finally start their season.
An outbreak sidelined 11 players — four of whom tested positive for COVID-19 — and delayed Washington’s first game until Tuesday.
— AP Sports (@AP_Sports) April 5, 2021
If those players do indeed miss the game, it will leave the Nationals without half their starting lineup against left-hander Drew Smyly. Of course, Washington will still have ace Max Scherzer on the mound on opening day for the sixth time in his seven seasons with the Nationals.
While Scherzer has three Cy Young awards to his credit, he might have to pitch a masterpiece for the Nationals to win with so many starters unlikely to play.
The Braves raised some eyebrows when they signed Smyly to a one-year, $11-million contract early in the offseason. He pitched as many as five innings just twice in five starts last season for the San Francisco Giants.
The one #Braves pitcher I’m really excited to see is Drew Smyly. I’ve always liked watching him pitch. I remember him having some great seasons with Tampa and Detroit. Great stuff pic.twitter.com/g7l2QTyHce
— Jack Hunter (@jackhunter2020) March 30, 2021
Atlanta, though, was impressed by some of his peripheral and advanced statistics, notably Smyly recording 38 strikeouts in his last 22 innings. He seems worthy of a play in this situation.
Pick 2: Pirates +140 (1 unit)
This a more a fade of Cincinnati Reds left-hander Wade Miley than a mandate that Trevor Cahill is going to dominate in his Pittsburgh Pirates’ debut.
Miley has had his moments in a 10-year career, including being selected to the All-Star Game in 2012 – his full season in the major leagues – and posting a 2.57 ERA in 16 starts for the National League Central champion Milwaukee Brewers in 2018.
— Houston Astros (@astros) May 10, 2019
However, Miley struggled so much down the stretch in 2019 that the Houston Astros left him off their postseason roster. He pitched in just six games, including four starts, for the Reds last season and posted a 5.65 ERA.
Sidelined with a hamstring injury for part of spring training this year, it is hard to trust the 34-year-old. Cahill should not be fazed about pitching for a new club – the Pirates are his ninth team in a 13-year career.
Pick 3: White Sox-Mariners under 7.5 (-104)
Chicago White Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito flashed his 2019 All-Star form in his 2021 debut on opening night, allowing two runs in 5.1 innings in a no-decision on the road against the Los Angeles Angels. He had eight strikeouts, two walks and superb command of his changeup.
Lucas Giolito dismantling Mike Trout with an absurd 85mph Changeup. 😯 pic.twitter.com/9vFyZQYiZ0
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 2, 2021
Left-hander James Paxton makes his season debut as he begins his second stint with the Seattle Mariners.
Paxton was delayed reporting to spring training because of a work visa issue in his native Canada. Thus, he pitched in just two Cactus League game. However, Paxton was dominant with 17 strikeouts in 8.1 innings.
Runs should be difficult to come by in this matchup.
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John Perrotto has been covering and writing about sports for various outlets for over 40 years. His work has appeared in the likes of USA TODAY, ESPN.com, SI.com, Forbes.com, The Associated Press, Baseball Digest, and more. John is based out of Beaver Falls, PA.