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July 4, 2017

There is one pick today. 

Take Atlanta Braves (+146) on the ML against Houston Astros risking 3% to win 4.38%.
(Peacock and Newcomb must start for wager to have action)

There is no question that the Houston Astros remain one of the best teams in the league and are one of the favorites to potential play in the World Series this season. The Astros are a team that is built around a lot of young talent and seemingly does everything right on the field to allow that talent to reach its potential. They are a solid all-around club when it comes to pitching, hitting and defensive play on the field. Their well-roundedness makes them a tough out for any opponent and often causes the oddsmakers to slightly inflate the odds for the betting public to back them. Despite how good they appear on paper, Houston is still a team that can be beat; they are not invincible and are vastly exceeding expectations on the year. While they are playing well, few expected them to play this well. That being said, it certainly will not pay to blindly fade a team like the Astros, however, in the right situation where opportunity presents itself and the reward outweighs the potential risk, there are times where you can expect a potential stumble. We believe this happens to be one of those times.

The Atlanta Braves are another young team that is currently in the midst of a rebuilding mode, and have been largely overlooked this season. That being said, this is still a team that should not be overlooked, especially now that they have been playing their best baseball of the season. Atlanta comes into this contest having won 11 of their last 15 games and are seeing the ball extremely well at the moment. While these two teams don't play often, the Braves have also had the Astros number when they have visited Atlanta, coming away with the victory in 19 of the last 26 matchups.

The pitching matchup in this contest should be entertaining to watch as both hurlers have shown flashes of brilliance already this season. The Astros will send converted reliever, turned starter Brad Peacock to the mound. Peacock has transitioned nicely from the bullpen into the starting role and his ability to make batters swing and miss have been a large reason for his success. That being said, Peacock does have some glaring weaknesses and it is only a matter of time before those catch up to him. He is not very durable and averaging under 5 innings per start this season. He also has some serious control issues and has walked 12 batters in his last 15 innings pitched. Fortunately for him, teams have not been able to capitalize on the free passes issued, however, we believe it is only a matter of time before those mistakes come back to haunt him.

For the Braves, rookie Sean Newcomb has been as good as advertised since making is MLB debut. Newcomb was one of the Braves' top prospects and in his short time has shown not only the club, but the entire league that he appears to be the real deal. Over 4 starts this season he has given up 18 hits and 4 total earned runs while surrendering just a single homerun this season! He has also struck out 21 batters in his 24-innings pitched this season. While this will certainly be the best offensive lineup that Newcomb has faced this season, he has certainly lived up to his billing thus far and we wouldn't be surprised to see him continue his success tonight. This matchup will likely be close and with so many people blindly backing the Astros, we like the Braves to pull off the mild upset tonight and reward their backers with a profitable underdog victory.

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