The line is moving in favor of the Washington Nationals today. Dakota Hudson will be making his first start since coming off the injured list for the visiting St. Louis Cardinals.
However, I still think the Cards have the starting pitching advantage against Erick Fedde, who enters today in poor form.
Find out where my best bets are for my free MLB picks and predictions for Cardinals vs. Nationals.
Cardinals vs. Nationals odds
This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.
The visitors opened as long as -160 but have gotten shorter and currently sit as -145 favorites. St. Louis closed as -160 favorites last night in a 6-2 win. Today's total opened at 9 but hit 9.5 overnight.
Cardinals vs Nationals predictions
- Prediction: Cardinals ML (-141)
- Prediction: Cardinals TT Over 5 (-124)
- Best bet: Hernandez Under 0.5 hits (+175)
Picks made on 7/30/2022 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Cardinals vs Nationals game info
• Location: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.
• Date: Saturday, July 30, 2022
• First pitch: 7:15 p.m. ET
• TV: FOX
Cardinals vs Nationals betting preview
Dakota Hudson (6-6, 4.10 ERA): Hudson is back after hitting the IL for 15 days due to a neck strain. He’s made one rehab start where he went five innings (79 pitches) and struck out six batters. He seems stretched out, and THE BAT has him projected for 90 pitches today vs. one of the worst offenses in baseball. Hudson was sporting a 2.73 ERA through his first 11 games this season before the neck issues slowed him down. Three poor starts against the Reds, Brewers, and Braves over the last two months have also ballooned his ERA.
Erick Fedde (5-7, 4.95 ERA): Fedde is a pitcher who allows a ton of traffic, thanks to a H/9 of over 9.0 and a BB% that sits in the Bottom 10% of the league. Over his last three starts, he’s allowed 13 earned runs (13 innings pitched) and has failed to get batters out with just five punchouts compared to 10 walks over that stretch. He is one of the worst pitchers in terms of Whiff% and chase-rate, and those numbers have been even poorer of late as the Washington starter has just 15 swings and misses over his last 259 pitches thrown (5.8%). Fedde is struggling with command, not missing bats, and getting taken deep (six home runs allowed over his last five starts). He’s a tough pitcher to back, even as a +125 dog.
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Betting trend to know
The Nationals are 1-8 SU in their last nine games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30. Find more MLB betting trends for Cardinals vs. Nationals
Cardinals vs Nationals picks and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
Bettors are hopping on the Nationals today as they opened as +140 dogs but currently sit at +125. The reasoning for the steam is likely bettors fading St. Louis starter Dakota Hudson, who is making his first start since July 14.
Hudson looked great in a Triple-A rehab assignment five days ago, and manager Oli Marmol is clearly comfortable with him starting today.
#STLCards RHP Dakota Hudson's line today for Triple-A @memphisredbirds : 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 Ks. He threw 79 pitches -- 49 for strikes. He got 5 ground-ball outs and 2 fly balls. He was on a rehab start because of a strained neck. He should pitch in Washington on Saturday.— John Denton (@JohnDenton555) July 24, 2022
The time off has likely done Hudson well as he saw his ERA climb from 2.76 to 4.10, thanks to some good offenses hitting him hard over June and July. Luckily for the Cards, the Washington offense is not very intimidating and is in the cellar of most offensive categories.
These things are priced into today’s lines, but I don't see Hudson being a detriment to St. Louis at all. I think the Cards have the advantage in starting pitching, despite a moneyline price that indicates this is more of a neutral matchup.
Erick Fedde comes into today in completely awful form. Fedde has a WHIP north of 1.50 and allows a ton of traffic. He’s walked 10 batters over his last three starts, compared to just five strikeouts.
Fedde also doesn’t get deep into games and gives way to a Washington bullpen that THE BAT ranks as the worst in baseball. Over his last 10 starts, he’s recorded more than 15 outs just twice, and his total outs market today sits at 15.5 and leans to the Under. The Washington bullpen could be asked to get 12 or more outs.
I’m jumping on the Cardinals today in a matchup where I feel Hudson is the better of the two starters despite steam on the home side. St. Louis has the edge offensively, and its 100-mph arms out of the pen are all available today.
Prediction: Cardinals moneyline (-141 at Coolbet)
The full game of Over 10 runs is a pass for me as the books expect plenty early, but we think Hudson will keep this bottom-barrel Washington offense in check for a solid five innings or 90 pitches.
St. Louis gets the advantage of hitting against Fedde as well as a bullpen that sits at the bottom of the league in most categories, including FIP, WAR, and HR/9. I’m not confident the Nats will get to Hudson, despite him making his first start since his neck strain. Instead, I think the Cardinals have a better chance at topping their team total of 5 (-124).
With Fedde’s inability to miss bats, St. Louis should be making a lot of contact today. Considering Fedde also gives up hard-hit balls at a 45% rate (Bottom-9% in baseball), the Cardinals will be putting plenty of hard-hit balls into play.
With a high total of 10 and one of the worst offensive teams in baseball in Washington, we’re avoiding the full-game Over and hitting the Cardinals team total of Over 5 runs instead.
Prediction: Cardinals team total Over 5 (-124 at FanDuel)
Washington’s Yadiel Hernandez usually hits seventh or sixth in the lineup and is a left-handed bat that gets platooned. He's a sub-par defensive outfielder and projects as a 22% pinch-risk and under 4.00 plate appearances, per THE BAT X projections.
Over his last 30 games, he’s seen fewer than four at-bats in 66% of the games. St. Louis has three solid left-handed arms in the pen, including regular set-up man Genesis Cabrera. Hernandez could easily give way to a right-handed hitter at some point today.
Hernandez is riding a four-game hitting streak that ties a season-high for the fringe starter. For him to go hitless today in an abbreviated start, we’re getting excellent plus money at +175 in a great low-risk play with great +EV.
Pick: Yadiel Hernandez Under 0.5 hits (+175 at DraftKings)
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