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MLB Odds: Diamondbacks vs. Braves prediction, odds and pick – 7/31/2022

Diamondbacks, Braves, MLB

The Arizona Diamondbacks will attempt to avoid the three-game sweep as they face the Atlanta Braves at Truist Park on Sunday. It’s time to continue our MLB odds coverage with a Diamondbacks-Braves prediction and pick.

The Braves defeated the Diamondbacks 6-2 on Saturday. Atlanta started hot in the first inning when Matt Olson slammed a home run to deep center. It was his 21st of the year, giving the Braves a 1-0 lead. Next, Atlanta struck in the second inning when William Contreras blasted a monster shot to center field. It was his 12th of the season, putting Atlanta up 3-0. Then, Contreras struck again in the fourth, sending this shot to deep right field. The home run was his 13th of the year, and second, of the game, making it 4-0 Atlanta. The Braves padded two more runs in the sixth to have more than enough to win. Ultimately, it was more than enough to win. 

Merrill Kelly will start for the Diamondbacks today. Kelly is 10-5 with a 3.04 ERA and has quietly become the best pitcher on the Arizona roster. Recently, he tossed eight scoreless innings while allowing three hits with seven strikeouts. Kelly is 4-0 with a 1.57 ERA over five starts in July. Conversely, he has struggled against Atlanta in his career, going 0-2 with a 6.23 ERA over two starts. Max Fried goes for the Braves today. Fried is 10-3 with a 2.73 ERA. Recently, he tossed six innings while allowing three earned runs on nine hits. Fried is having a solid July, going 3-1 with a 2.61 ERA over five starts. Subsequently, he has faced Arizona twice in his career, going 3-1 with a 4.09 ERA.

Here are the Diamondbacks-Braves MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel. 

MLB Odds: Diamondbacks-Braves Odds

Arizona Diamondbacks: +1.5 (-111)

Atlanta Braves: -1.5 (-108)

Over: 7.5 (-120)

Under: 7.5 (-102)

Why The Diamondbacks Could Cover The Spread

The D-Backs have not been playing well in this series, mustering four runs in two games. Significantly, the offense continues to struggle, not garnering much of anything. Kelly has been an excellent pitcher for the Diamondbacks, but needs run support. Likewise, Arizona cannot allow the long ball, which happened three times yesterday. 

The Diamondbacks must step up early, and that means reviving an anemic offense. Arizona ranks 28th in batting average, 23rd in on-base percentage, 20th in runs, 11th in home runs, and 17th in slugging percentage. Also, none of the players in their line is hitting higher than .280. Someone has to come through for the Diamondbacks, and it will be tough sledding against fried. However, if their offense can muster enough runs, then Kelly can take care of the rest. 

The Diamondbacks will cover the spread if they get to Fried early. Additionally, Kelly must pitch a solid game, going at least six innings. The bullpen must do their part and keep the game close. Lastly, the Diamondbacks have to keep the ball in the park. Atlanta’s home runs took the wind out of Arizona yesterday. Thus, the Diamondbacks would do well to prevent that from happening again. 

Why The Braves Could Cover The Spread

Fried is a game-changer and one of the better pitchers in the league. Moreover, he dominates when he has to. Fried is 5-3 with a 2.72 ERA over 12 starts at home. Thus, look for him to keep the Arizona bats at bay, and make a mark on the game. 

Of course, Fried needs run support. The Braves are 10th in batting average, 17th in on-base percentage, fourth in runs, second in home runs, and second in slugging percentage. Olsen is one of their better players, as is Austin Riley. He is batting .298 with 29 home runs, 67 RBIs, and 61 runs. Thus, Riley has led the way for Atlanta as they attempt to defend their title. The Braves utilized the long ball yesterday and plan to do it again. Likewise, they expect to put pressure on Kelly. 

The Braves will cover the spread if Fried can toss a great game. Additionally, they get the job done if their offense takes Kelly out of his element and connects off him. The Braves are powering their way to the playoffs so every win is essential. 

Final Diamondbacks-Braves Prediction & Pick

The Braves are the favorites. They hit and pitch better, and do well in front of their fans. Now, Atlanta must close out this series with a sweep. There are no excuses, as Fried is their best pitcher. Expect the Braves to go out and perform remarkably in front of the Atlanta faithful. The Braves will cover the spread and finish off the Diamondbacks. 

Final Diamondbacks-Braves Prediction & Pick: Atlanta Braves: -1.5 (-108)