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MLB Playoff Odds Picks, Best Bets for Padres vs Mets Game 1

MLB Playoff Odds Picks, Best Bets for Padres vs Mets Game 1 article feature image

Sarah Stier/Getty Images. Pictured: Eduardo Escobar and the Mets celebrate.

Padres vs. Mets Game 1 Odds

Padres Odds+130
Mets Odds-150
Time8:07 p.m. ET
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Friday's loaded, four-game Wild Card Round slate is capped off tonight with Game 1 in Queens between the San Diego Padres and New York Mets.

The Mets won 101 games but were relegated to the Wild Card Round after being surpassed in the NL East standings by the Atlanta Braves.

The Padres return to the postseason as a wild card team yet again after finishing a distant second to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West.

Yu Darvish takes the mound for San Diego, while Max Scherzer will make his first postseason start for New York.

Our analysts have broken down this game from every angle and have a trio of bets to recommend from Wild Card Friday's Main Event.

MLB Odds & Picks For Padres vs. Mets Game 1

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Max Scherzer Strikeouts
Max Scherzer Outs Recorded
Mets Team Total

Max Scherzer Over 5.5 Strikeouts (-115)

Odds via BetMGM

Tanner McGrath: Max Scherzer has owned the Padres. He's made 17 career starts against San Diego with a 2.88 ERA and a 12.3 K/9. It's been pure dominance.

Scherzer has also cashed over 5.5 strikeouts in five of his six starts against San Diego dating back to the beginning of last year. He's struck out 46 Padres over 37 1/3 innings in that span.

The Padres don't strike out that much, but Scherzer's fastball-slider combination is a force of nature that has fooled SoCal baseball players for years.

Max Scherzer, 96mph Fastball and 86mph Slider, Overlay

— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) September 20, 2022

Expanding a little bit, Scherzer cashed over 5.5 strikeouts in 18 of 23 starts this season. He's cashed over 5.5 Ks in 80% of his starts dating back to last season.

Scherzer is money for those backing him.

And like Quintana, Scherzer has three different models projecting him to go well over his strikeout total.

Back Scherzer to put up another monster strikeout performance against the Padres.

Max Scherzer Over 16.5 Pitching Outs (-135)

Odds via BetMGM

Doug Ziefel: If you're looking for a Game 1 starter, look no further than Max Scherzer. The 38-year-old right-hander has been worth every penny as he has brought his bulldog mentality to the Big Apple.

Scherzer made 23 starts this season and went over this total in 21 of them. That gives us staggering implied odds of -1049 that he will go over again today.

That's before you factor in the matchup. This Padres lineup, while dangerous, is not as potent as it appears. Yes, Manny Machado and Juan Soto are two guys who could carry the team, but Scherzer has dominated this Padres lineup over the course of his career. In 180 combined at-bats, the Padres have hit just .182 off Mad Max and have a 35 percent strikeout rate.

I fully expect Max to give the Mets six innings at least. We've seen him battle even if he does not have his best stuff. These are the games he lives for, and we can bank on him performing well. Bet to -140.

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Mets F5 Team Total Over 1.5 (-110)

Odds via DraftKings

Sean Zerillo: I’ll generally look to back the Mets against right-handed pitching (119 wRC+, 2nd) and bet against them when facing left-handed pitching (109 wRC+, 12th) during these playoffs. Particularly if they’re without Starling Marte (153 wRC+ vs. lefties) and Darrin Ruf (116) for the first round or two.

The Mets’ splits are even more pronounced since the trade deadline (128 wRC+ vs. righties, 1st; 107 wRC+ vs. lefties, 11th) when they acquired a pair of left-handed bats in Tyler Naquin and Daniel Vogelbach to boost their offense.

The Padres’ offense has ranked closer to league average throughout the season, no matter how you slice it.

Scherzer (2.87 xERA, 3.23 xFIP, 3.06 SIERA)  is undoubtedly the superior pitcher as compared to Darvish (3.54 xERA, 3.58 xFIP, 3.39 SIERA), and my model gives New York a very slight bullpen advantage too; though the bridge between any of their starting pitchers and Edwin Diaz (1.69 xERA, 1.04 xFIP, 1.11 SIERA) can be a bit shaky.

I’m interested to see how hard the Mets push Diaz this postseason; and whether Buck Showalter regularly deploys him in multi-inning stints, something he only did in four of 61 appearances this year.

For those unaware, Diaz struck out more than half of all batters he faced in 2022 (50.2%), which is just staggering.

Ultimately, my moneyline projections for this game align with the betting market. I would need +143 (41.5% implied) or better to back the Padres, but I doubt the line climbs that high.

Regarding the totals, I would consider betting the F5 Over 3 (-110) compared to my projection (3.38), but I prefer the Mets F5 team total Over 1.5 (-110) compared to my team projection (1.85); and I’d bet that number up to -115.

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