Nationals vs White Sox Pick | MLB Odds, Predictions (May 14)

Nationals vs White Sox Pick | MLB Odds, Predictions (May 14) article feature image

(Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images) Pictured: CJ Abrams.

Nationals vs. White Sox Odds

Tuesday, May 14
4:40pm ET
Nationals Odds
-118o / -102u
White Sox Odds
-118o / -102u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Nationals and White Sox sat idle on Monday as their game succumbed to rainy weather, which means Tuesday is a great day to play two. For this preview, I'll be touching strictly on game one. It's the same setup as the game on Monday, but just earlier in the day.

Let's dive into this one and get to our Nationals vs. White Sox pick.

Check out our MLB Betting Hub for more previews from today's slate.

Washington Nationals

There's some excitement in the nation's capitol for this Nationals team. Washington enters play Tuesday at 19-20 but lost three of the past five games, all three by two or fewer runs. You won't see many blowout wins or losses from the Nationals.

The Nationals rely on young middle-infielders Luis García Jr. and CJ Abrams to set the lineup's tone. Abrams leads the Nationals with a 138 wRC+, while García trails closely at 127. Washington's offensive key is veterans like Jesse Winker, Joey Meneses and Eddie Rosario cashing in on run-scoring chances.

The most prominent Nationals breakout performer is 32-year-old starter Trevor Williams, who boasts a 1.96 ERA in 36 innings. Williams highlighted his electric start by striking out eight Orioles over five innings last week.

So, how is Williams performing this well? Adding a new pitch to his arsenal is the most obvious sign. Williams threw his sweeper just 2% of the time last year, and it's now at over 17.9% this year.

But it's interesting how the Nationals manage Williams' workload. They don't trust him to go deep into games, with Williams throwing more than 81 pitches just once in seven starts. Will Washington unleash Williams fully, or is this what to expect moving forward?

Chicago White Sox

The White Sox's pitching rotation is pretty mediocre outside of Garrett Crochet and Erick Fedde. That includes the starter in game one Tuesday, Chris Flexen. He doesn't throw hard, sitting around 89-92 mph on his fastball. His cutter is probably his best pitch, but he's a fly-ball pitcher, as 63% of his outs come through the air.

I also have concerns about what's coming in behind Flexen. The White Sox bullpen ranks 14th in bullpen ERA and bottom five in combined bullpen walk and home run rates. The best reliever according to xFIP is lefty Tanner Banks, who could serve an important role to neutralize García and Winker.

On April 26, the White Sox entered play against the Rays with a 3-22 record. Then, Tommy Pham emerged like a superhero and brought energy to a lifeless offense. Since the veteran outfielder debuted, the White Sox are 9-7, with Pham posting a 132 wRC+ and .339 OBP. It's an obvious full rebuild situation for the White Sox, so accumulating veteran talent to trade at July's trade deadline for future pieces is the goal for now.

In the past seven games, Korey Lee and Paul DeJong are hitting over .330 with two homers for Lee and three for DeJong. The White Sox's everyday starters couldn't hit early, and things are settling in now.

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Nationals vs. White Sox

Betting Pick & Prediction

I have zero trust in Flexen pitching well against the Nationals. He's easily one of the worst starting pitchers in baseball, and his pitching once every five days is a testament to the current state of the White Sox.

The Nationals' advantage in the pitching matchup is notable. It's not a light advantage, which leads me to backing Washington at anywhere from -120 to -145. I would personally place the line closer to Nationals -150, even on the road.

The White Sox are hot for their standards, but that isn't a high standard. Don't let their recent hot stretch outweigh the first 25 games of misery.

Pick: Nationals Moneyline (-120 via DraftKings | Bet to -145)

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