Me Against the NL Central, Day Three

Once again, there’s only one game on the slate tonight, the National Game of the Week between the Atlanta Braves and the Washington Nationals.

So far, I’m 1-1 in my picks for the year, while there have been no games played yet by NL Central teams. In the big picture, these single-game dates are relatively meaningless to my overall goal of having a better prediction winning percentage than the best team in the National League’s Central division. Still, 2-1 looks a lot better than 1-2, even at this early stage.

Therefore, my pick for tonight’s game is the Atlanta Braves. Braves starter Tim Hudson has been outstanding against the Nationals throughout his career, racking up a 5-1 record in eight starts against the Nats while posting an ERA just over 1 and allowing less than a baserunner per inning. Historically, the most successful Nationals against Hudson are newcomers Rob Mackowiak and Paul Lo Duca.

Nationals opening day starter Odalis Perez hasn’t been quite as successful against the Braves. He enters tonight’s game with an earned-run average over 5 and just one win in seven career appearances (six starts) against his former team. Jeff Francoeur, in particular, has had a lot of success in his limited number of meetings against Perez, going 4-for-6 with a triple and a home run against the southpaw.

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