Brewers vs. Braves MLB Odds, Picks: NLDS Game 3 Betting Preview (October 11)
John Fisher/Getty Images. Pictured: Freddy Peralta
- The Braves are slight favorites as the NLDS shifts to Atlanta for Game 3 this afternoon.
- With Atlanta sending Ian Anderson to the mound against Milwaukee's Freddy Peralta, is another pitchers' duel in the cards?
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of the matchup, including a betting prediction.
Brewers vs. Braves Odds
|Time||1:07 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.|
There was a chance that Friday might be the final day of the MLB season where we had as many as four games played on the same day. Thanks to Chicago’s late-night win at home against Houston on Sunday, though, baseball fans will be treated to a quadruple header of Game 3s and Game 4s on Monday.
The first game of the day features the series that has totaled just six runs in two games after two pitching duels in Games 1 and 2. Corbin Burnes escaped early trouble in Game 1 to toss six scoreless and the Brewers finally got to Charlie Morton in the seventh to win 2-1.
Atlanta responded at Milwaukee in Game 2 with a 3-0 win after six shutout innings from Max Fried and three shaky but ultimately effective shutout innings from the bullpen. The series now shifts to Atlanta, where the Braves have stolen home field but the Brewers edge in pitching depth really comes to fruition.
Milwaukee will start right-hander Freddy Peralta, who has been one of the 10 best pitchers in the National League this season. Atlanta counters with Ian Anderson, who took a step back this season after a stellar rookie year in 2020. Neither pitcher is quite as good as their surface-level numbers suggest and this is a good spot for the offenses to wake up since the pitching isn’t quite as dominant as the last two starters for each team.
Brewers Need To Get Offensive
Milwaukee has totaled two runs in the 2021 playoffs on a two-run seventh inning homer by Rowdy Tellez. The Brewers’ offense had some concerning underlying numbers entering the playoffs and were always going to rely on their pitching to make a deep run in the playoffs.
With that said, they also ran into two of the best pitchers in the NL right now. Morton is as good as anyone in big games and Fried hasn’t allowed more than three runs in 13 starts and has two complete game shutouts in that same time frame.
The Brewers’ offense may not have produced much in the first two games, but almost their entire lineup has a positive run value against changeups, which is Anderson’s signature pitch. That’s especially true for Christian Yelich, who posts a +11 run value against the changeup. Willy Adames and Omar Narvaez also succeed against Anderson’s best pitch.
Milwaukee’s Freddy Peralta will make his first playoff start, but not his playoff debut as the right-hander appeared twice against the Dodgers in both 2018 and 2020. His season-long numbers are impressive but not nearly as good in the last two months. Peralta had never thrown this many innings in his career and it’s fair to wonder if the wear and tear of a full season had started to wear on him.
Peralta posted an ERA below 2.51 every month from April to July. He was a genuine top-eight pitcher in the NL, but fell off considerably in August and September with a 4.73 and 4.70 ERA in those two months. His last eight starts haven’t been a huge sample, but it’s certainly concerning. Peralta has a 2.82 xERA and 3.12 FIP so his season-long success is legitimate, but his HR/fly ball rate is well below league average and his strand rate is solidly above average.
Both of those are byproducts of an excellent ability to strike batters out and avoid hard contact, but his end-of-season downturn suggests there could be runs on Monday.
Anderson Key For Braves
A major-league pitcher strands, on average, about 72% of the runners he allows in a given season. This tends to fluctuate quite a bit in the short-to-medium term, but in the long run, very few consistently over or underperform that number.
Last season, Anderson stranded about 73% of runners, a reasonable number that is very close to league average. In 2021, that number is all the way up to 79.1%, more than seven-percent better than league average.
Anderson’s actual ERA of 3.58 is perfectly fine, but the luck he’s had stranding runners hides his mediocre underlying numbers. His xERA is 4.30 and his FIP sits at 4.12. Anderson doesn’t generate a lot of chases, he’s average in hard-hit rate and below average in most other metrics.
He relies heavily on fastball, changeup and curveball, with extra focus on the changeup as his best out pitch. This season, Anderson has a close to neutral run value on the pitch. When he’s pitching it well, he’s very tough to hit but when he’s missing with it, it’s been hit very hard this season.
On offense, two of the Braves’ best hitters — Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley — have crushed sliders this season. That is Peralta’s best pitch and hitting it could be key for getting a struggling Atlanta offense going after two very quiet games at the plate.
This line opened at 7.5 and immediately went up to eight. Eight isn’t a key number in MLB betting and the market still hasn’t quite moved far enough up, though it’s easy to expect that there won’t be a ton of runs given how bad the offenses have been and with quick hooks on both starters in such a pivotal Game 3. But the bullpens aren’t quite as good in long relief either.
Our Action Network PRO projection makes the Brewers -121 in the first five innings and -110 for the game, and I cannot recommend a play on either side in what appears to be a toss-up game. Atlanta has the slight lineup edge and is at home, but Milwaukee has the better bullpen and better starting pitcher.
Milwaukee has had success against changeups, a pitcher neither Morton nor Fried used often but Anderson will. The Braves’ lineup is solid against Peralta’s favored slider and Peralta hasn’t been nearly as good in the last two months as he was earlier in the year. There could be some nerves in his first playoff start, especially on the road.
If this gets to 8.5, I can’t recommend an over, but at 8, anything -115 or better is fine as the offenses should be able to produce more as the series shifts to Atlanta.
Pick: Over 8 (-115 or better)