* NBC Sports Washington editor Prince J. Grimes picks his favorite prop bets from today's action.
Nationals pitcher Paolo Espino is coming off his third win of the season in his last start, allowing just one run on four hits in 5 1/3 innings. He was five starts removed from his previous win, against the Mets on June 28, but the 34-year-old showed progression in between those appearances.
In his last two outings, Espino has thrown 76 and 79 pitches, respectively, his highest counts of the season. More importantly, he’s only allowed a total of four runs in his last 15 1/3 innings. Combine those factors with his matchup Wednesday against Phillies pitcher Chase Anderson, and that makes Espino’s odds to earn a second straight win intriguing. PointsBet Sportsbook has him at +140 to get the win against Philadelphia, meaning a $100 bet wins $140.
Anderson, who is making his return to the Phillies rotation for the first time in two months, makes this an interesting play because of his struggles this year, particularly on the road where he has a 8.74 ERA and 1.68 WHIP in seven games, including four starts. He’s allowed 22 runs in 22 2/3 innings pitched away from Philadelphia. If the Nationals can jump on Anderson early, Espino doesn’t need to be perfect, just better.
Also working in Espino’s favor is that this is only Anderson’s third appearance since returning to the team from the COVID-related injured list. While he did throw 71 pitches in 4 innings his last appearance in relief, it was the first time he had thrown more than 50 pitches since his last start on May 16. If the Nationals can make him work hard to get outs and wear him down early, they can get to a bullpen that has been shaky at best this season.
On the other side, Espino gets a Phillies offense that Patrick Corbin was able to keep largely silent until the seventh inning of Tuesday’s game. His eight strikeouts were his second-best total of the season. Similarly, Nats prospect Josiah Gray kept the Phillies' bats quiet through his start on Monday before they exploded later against the bullpen. The Nats only need to build a large enough lead against Anderson and hold on to it for Espino to be a winner.
The NBC Sports Edge model projects Anderson to allow 3.3 earned runs in 5 IP and Espino to give up 1.8 earned runs in 4.2 IP. Espino would need to push that innings number to a full five in order to get the win, but he's done that in five of eight starts this year including three straight.
Prince’s Prop: Paolo Espino win (+140)
Odds provided by our partner, PointsBet