The San Diego Padres take on the Arizona Diamondbacks. Check out our MLB odds series for our Padres Diamondbacks prediction and pick.

Joe Musgrove goes to the mound for the Padres, while Zac Gallen takes the ball for the Diamondbacks.

Joe Musgrove has been a very good, workmanlike pitcher for the Padres this year, with a 3.28 ERA and a lot of innings under his belt. However, he got off to a lightning-fast start and has not been quite as good as the season has moved along. Hitters have made some adjustments to Musgrove, and he needs a higher gear to get the Padres over the line and into the postseason. The Padres are very much aware that the Milwaukee Brewers are right on their heels in the battle for the final wild card spot in the National League. The Brewers were down 5-0 to the Yankees on Friday night but came back to win, 7-6. San Diego needs Musgrove to pitch like an ace in these final few weeks of the regular season. The path to the playoffs begins here for Musgrove in a game which a great pitcher should own.

Speaking of great pitchers: Zac Gallen forged a 44 1/3-inning streak without a single run allowed. It’s the longest scoreless inning streak in the history of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Gallen has moved into the top five ERA leaders among all National League starters. He won’t win the Cy Young Award, but he will get some non-first-place votes on some ballots and has announced himself as one of the better pitchers in the sport. Gallen is going up against a Padre team which has profoundly struggled at the plate since the Juan Soto and Brandon Drury trades which figured to make San Diego an offensive juggernaut. We saw that juggernaut on Friday night in Phoenix. The Padres were shut out by the D-Backs on Thursday, but they bounced back with 12 runs on Friday. Gallen, however, has been pitching like an ace after the All-Star break. It’s a great clash between a batting order with a lot of talent, and a pitcher who is throwing the ball as well as he ever has.

Courtesy of FanDuel, here are the Padres-Diamondbacks MLB odds.

MLB Odds: Padres-Diamondbacks Odds

San Diego Padres: -1.5 (+150)

Arizona Diamondbacks: +1.5 (-182)

Over: 7 (-114)

Under: 7 (-106)

Why The Padres Could Cover the Spread

Zac Gallen finally lost his scoreless inning streak. It could be a source of relief for him, but it could also point to regression for him. If Gallen does regress, the Padres are in great shape. The other big reason the Padres will cover the spread is simple: Their bats woke up on Friday. When a batting order is locked in a slump, it needs a big game in which a lot of different hitters contribute. Then hitting becomes contagious. The past few weeks, slumping has become contagious. Friday changed the whole mood in the Padre dugout. That’s exactly what this team needed, and it will carry into this game.

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Why The Diamondbacks Could Cover the Spread

Zac Gallen. That’s the whole reason to pick the D-Backs, and it’s a very good one. Gallen lost his scoreless inning streak in Coors Field, of all places. He won’t be bothered by the fact that the streak ended. If anything, it might relax him since he won’t go to the mound thinking about that streak. Gallen is a better pitcher than Musgrove, and we need to see more than one good game from San Diego hitters before giving them the benefit of the doubt.

Final Padres-Diamondbacks Prediction & Pick

Zac Gallen is hard to bet against. Don’t be greedy. Just take the Diamondbacks plus the run and a half on the run line. Maybe fold Arizona into a parlay with some of the other good MLB bets you can identify on the Saturday slate.

Final Padres-Diamondbacks Prediction & Pick: Diamondbacks +1.5