Braves vs Nationals MLB Odds, Picks and Predictions April 6

Updated: April 6, 2021

Max Scherzer is coming off arguably his worst season in years, but he’s still a dangerous hurler who can take advantage of a Braves team that looks utterly lost at the plate right now.

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After missing out on Opening Weekend the Washington Nationals finally get their 2021 MLB season underway when they host the Atlanta Braves Tuesday afternoon.

The defending National League East champion Braves got off to a slow start, getting swept by the Philadelphia Phillies and only scoring three runs in three games. Scoring runs could be tough once again going against Nationals ace Max Scherzer. 

Check out our MLB free picks and predictions for Braves vs. Nationals on Tuesday, April 6, with the first pitch scheduled for 4:05 p.m. ET.

Braves vs Nationals odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

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The early oddsmakers that posted this line had the Nationals as -150 favorites and the initial money has been all on the Braves, moving the line down to Nats -125. The total hit the board at 8. Check back later for a full report from Patrick!

Check out the full line movement for this game

Braves vs Nationals betting preview

Starting pitchers

Drew Smyly (2020: 0-1, 3.42 ERA): Smyly bounced back in 2020 after a less-than-stellar season in 2019. The lefty looked rejuvenated in San Francisco and parlayed that into a new contract with the Braves, becoming the veteran of a young rotation. Smyly relies mostly on a four-seam fastball and a devastating putaway curveball and used them for a ridiculous 14.4 strikeouts per nine innings last season.

Max Scherzer (2020: 5-4, 3.74 ERA): Scherzer is arguably coming off his worst season since 2012 in Detroit. But the worst season for Scherzer is still a 3.74 ERA and the second-highest punchout rate of his career. And we can give Mad Max a bit of a break considering the crazy circumstances surrounding the 2020 season, so let’s not say he’s started his decline just yet. The guy can still hurl it.


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Key injuries

Braves: Chris Martin RP (Questionable).
Nationals: Juan Soto OF (Questionable), Starlin Castro 2B (Questionable), Kyle Schwarber LF (Out).
Find our latest MLB injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Under is 5-0 in the Braves’ last five games dating back to last season. Find more MLB betting trends for Braves vs. Nationals.

Moneyline pick

The Braves won the National League East by plating more runs than any Major League Baseball team but the Dodgers. But you wouldn’t have been able to tell in their season-opening series against the Phillies.

The Braves managed just three runs on just 12 hits over three games. Obviously, Atlanta’s lineup featuring the likes of Ronald Acuna, Freddie Freeman, and Ozzie Albies is too talented and deep for that to keep up for too long, but the matchup against Scherzer sure doesn’t help.

The Nationals’ season was delayed due to a COVID outbreak, but they should be raring to go for this one, hoping to reap the rewards from their offseason moves. Washington went out and got Juan Soto some protection in the lineup, bringing in Josh Bell and Kyle Schwarber while Ryan Zimmerman returns after opting out in 2020. Additionally, the Nats ranked third in the MLB when it came to batting average against lefties.

But no one will be more amped up for this matchup than Scherzer, who will look to prove that 2020 was just a blip on the radar. With the Braves looking lost at the dish right now, this is a very good price on a Scherzer game, considering the edge in starters.

PREDICTION: Nationals (-120)

Covers MLB betting analysis

Over/Under pick

The Braves looked just sick at the plate over their first three games. Not only were they not making contact against the Phillies, they weren’t even close. The Braves struck out a whopping 35 times over those three games, compared to drawing just five walks.

That will not be a recipe for success against a guy like Scherzer. Mad Max finished the shortened 2020 season with 12.3 strikeouts per nine innings. That’s the second-best strikeout rate of his career. Scherzer found the center of the plate a bit too much in 2020, but look for him to get back on track with a proper offseason and spring behind him.

And while the Nationals hit for average against lefties, they still ranked 21st in scoring in 2020. It will be interesting to see if Washington has to shake off some rust after a delayed start to the season. But with two solid starters, we like this one to stay below the number.

PREDICTION: Under 8 (-110)

Braves vs Nationals betting card

  • Nationals (-120)
  • Under 8 (-110)

MLB parlays

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