Washington Nationals vs. Milwaukee Brewers: Preview, Prediction & Odds -- Aug. 20, 2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 8:10 p.m. ET
Venue: American Family Field, Milwaukee, WI
Where to watch: MASN 2, Bally Sports Wisconsin

Season-to-date
Nationals: 52-68 (4th place, NL East)
Brewers: 74-48 (1st place, NL Central)

Recent form
Nationals: 3-7 in last 10
Brewers: 8-2 in last 10

Projected lineup


Nationals:
Victor Robles (R) CF
Alcides Escobar (R) SS
Juan Soto (L) RF
Josh Bell (S) 1B
Yadiel Hernandez (L) LF
Carter Kieboom (R) 3B
Luis Garcia (L) 2B
Riley Adams (R) C
Patrick Corbin (L) P

Brewers:
Kolten Wong (L) 2B
Willy Adames (R) SS
Eduardo Escobar (S) 1B
Christian Yelich (L) LF
Avisail Garcia (R) RF
Lorenzo Cain (R) CF
Luis Urias (R) 3B
Manny Pina (R) C
Brett Anderson (L) P

Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Brewers -195, Nationals +165
BetMGM: Brewers -190, Nationals +155
FanDuel: Brewers -196, Nationals +164

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Nationals - Brewers preview


The Milwaukee Brewers return home after a 10-game road trip and will begin a three-game series against the Washington Nationals starting Friday at American Family Field.

Milwaukee went 8-2 on its extended road trip and brought back an 8.5-game lead on the Cincinnati Reds for first place in the National League Central. The Brewers took two of three against the St. Louis Cardinals, but lost the finale 8-4 on Thursday.

Brandon Woodruff pitched well through the first four innings and worked with a 4-1 lead heading to the bottom of the fifth. The Cardinals plated five runs in the home half of the frame off back-to-back home runs from Tyler O’Neill and Lars Nootbaar.

The top part of Milwaukee’s rotation took a hit this week with ace Freddy Peralta going on the 10-day IL with right shoulder inflammation. He only lasted two-plus innings in his start on Wednesday in St. Louis.

Brett Anderson will get the start for Milwaukee. The left-hander is 4-6 with a 4.09 ERA in 18 starts. He won his last three appearances on the mound before losing Aug. 14 against the Pittsburgh Pirates where he gave up six runs in 3.1 innings.

Milwaukee will welcome a Nationals team that’s coming off a shocking two-game series sweep of the Toronto Blue Jays after losing their previous seven games. The Nationals withstood a seventh-inning rally from Toronto with four runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning, and won the second game 8-5 on Thursday in D.C.

Washington star Juan Soto went 1-for-2 with a 3-run home run and was walked three times. Josh Bell also had three RBIs with a three-run homer in the seventh that gave the Nationals back the lead. The bullpen squandered Josiah Gray’s first potential win, going six strong innings, only 2 ER and 1 BB. For as much as it’s been maligned as of late, Washington’s offense picked up these past two games with putting 20 runs on Toronto.

The Nationals hope to get a bounce-back effort from left-hander Patrick Corbin after giving up six runs in 4.2 IP against the Braves almost a week ago. Corbin fell to 6-12 with a 6.04 ERA in 23 starts, with a WHIP of 1.44. Milwaukee’s lineup will be a tough out on the road for the struggling Corbin. His accuracy has already been an issue with a bulk of his pitches landing in the bottom left corner away from the plate.

Life has proven to be tough without Max Scherzer, but the bottom line is that’s what the Nationals signed up for when they started this rebuild. They should’ve put a disclaimer that this wasn’t for entertainment purposes.

Betting trends


While the Nationals and Corbin have struggled, three of their wins this season have come as an underdog of +150 or more. The over has cashed all seven times.

In their next game following a run of five or more straight road games, the Brewers are 16-4 (+11.4).

Prediction


The Brewers are in a race with the San Francisco Giants for the league’s top record and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. They’ll surely be energized coming home after a long, successful road trip. It’s not a fun money line pick, but expect the Nationals to keep it competitive. Brewers win, 9-6.

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Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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