Friday MLB Betting Preview – Marlins at Braves

The first place Braves enjoyed a well-deserved off day and now welcome the world traveling Marlins.

Florida Marlins at Atlanta Braves

Florida dropped a 6-5 decision to the New York Mets in a series finale that was played in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  The club is still adjusting to the guidance of new skipper Edwin Rodriguez, after the club dismissed Fredi Gonzalez in late June.  After taking two of three against the Mets in a series where they were designated the home team, the Marlins head off on a 10-game road trip.  Florida has won five of its last seven games away from Sun Life Stadium and should remain confident in playing at Turner Field.  The squad posted a 6-3 mark on the Braves home field last season.  Over the last three years, the Fish have posted a 98-75 mark against NL East opponents (+3,010).

Marlins starting pitcher Josh Johnson enjoying a splendid year, posting an 8-3 record and 1.83 ERA in 16 starts (+140). The right-hander falls just short of averaging a strikeout per inning, with 107 punch outs in 108 innings.  He has managed to start in just five road games (-190), posting a 2-1 mark and 2.61 ERA, while recording just 15 strikeouts in 31 frames.  Johnson has tallied a winning 4-2 record and 2.74 ERA in 12 career appearances (11 starts) against the Braves, including a 1-0 mark and 2.17 ERA in five outings at Turner Field.  He faced off against the division rivals three times in 2009, finishing with an even 1-1 record and 3.57 ERA.

Atlanta is set to play its seventh home game of a 10-day homestand, as they enjoyed a day off on Thursday.  The Braves are an even 4-4 when playing with an off day this season (-30) and 28-20 in this situation the last three years (+530).  This may play a bigger role in today’s game due to the Marlins coming off a less-than-normal series in Puerto Rico.  Manager Bobby Cox’s team has rattled off an impressive 38-19 record since April 30, but are still trying to solve the NL East.  The Braves are a game under .500 when playing divisional opponents (-360), while going 15-6 against the Central and 11-9 versus the West.

Braves starting pitcher Kris Medlen has made a mark in falling into the starting rotation’s  No. 5 spot, posting a 5-1 record and 3.15 ERA in 22 outings (nine starts).  He has been especially impressive at Turner Field, standing at a perfect 2-0 and 2.86 ERA in 10 outings (four starts).  Atlanta has earned six straight wins with Medlen on the hill, as the offense has provided at least three runs in all of those games (32 total).  In posting a 2.73 ERA in May, the right-hander allowed opposing batters to hit .313 against him, which is quite a contrast to his 3.51 ERA in June and allowing batters to hit a combined .213.

Bettors have been profiting in a big way in backing the Braves at home, with the team currently standing at 28-9 for the year (+1,520).  Total players have been unable to find any edge in these games, as games at Turner Field are 17-18-2 O/U in 2010.  The Marlins may provide a push to the window in betting the over, as they’ve gone over in all three games as a road favorite of -125 to -150.

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