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MLB Picks Today 7/7/23

MLB Picks Today for the Atlanta Braves vs Tampa Bay Rays Friday Night baseball game. Also get two more premium MLB betting tips tonight.

Braves vs. Rays

When: 6:40 PM ET, Friday, July 7, 2023
Where: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida

In the final weekend before the All-Star break, the top two teams in the majors are squaring off in what might be a prelude of the World Series matchup in October.

The Atlanta Braves and the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday play the first of three games in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Fittingly, the showdown matches the Rays, who have the best record in the American League, and the Braves, who have been the most dominant team in the National League.

As strong as the Rays have been in the first half, they’ve struggled of late — by their standards, at least. After being swept at home by the Philadelphia Phillies in a three-game series that ended Thursday, Tampa Bay has dropped a season-high five straight.

“You want momentum going into the break,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said on Rays radio. “So, when the guys get their four days off, they have that positive vibe that they’ve worked to create (so) this first half maintains itself.”

On Friday, the Braves are sending veteran Charlie Morton (8-6, 3.57 ERA) to the mound, while the Rays counter with fellow righty Tyler Glasnow (2-2, 4.50).

Morton, 39, pitched for the Rays in 2019-20, and was a prominent performer on Tampa Bay’s 2020 team that lost in the World Series to the Los Angeles Dodgers in six games.

The right-hander has made six career starts against the Rays and holds a 2-3 record with a 3.44 ERA in those meetings.

In his last two starts, Glasnow has combined to strike out 23 in 10 2/3 innings. However, he has nothing to show for it on his record, taking a loss at Seattle on Saturday and a no-decision at home against the Kansas City Royals on June 25.

The Braves enter their final three games before the break having won 10 of 11.

Atlanta was off on Thursday after taking two of three at Cleveland. Catcher Sean Murphy had four hits, including a home run, in an 8-1 rout on Wednesday.

In his last six games, Murphy is 11-for-23 with three home runs and eight RBIs.

The Braves acquired Murphy from the Oakland Athletics last December. In his first year in Atlanta, the All-Star catcher has belted 15 home runs and driven in 50 runs.

“To get a guy of that caliber with all of the tools and physical skills that guy possesses, he’s been huge for us,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said.

The Braves have no shortage of players who can do damage. First baseman Matt Olson leads the National League with 29 home runs, and Ronald Acuna Jr. is having an MVP-caliber season with 21 home runs, 54 RBIs and 41 stolen bases.

Then there are Ozzie Albies (22 homers), Marcell Ozuna (17) and Austin Riley (16).

“We’ve got a lot of guys who can drive the ball out of the yard,” Olson said, before adding, “I don’t think we’re dependent on (the home run).”

The Rays’ offense was held in check in Thursday’s 3-1 loss in 11 innings against the Phillies.

“Everybody in here knows we’re not playing our best ball, but we know that comes with a season that’s 162 (games),” Tampa Bay infielder Taylor Walls said. “We’ll get back to it. But luckily, it’s happening now so we can clean some of those things up, find some of the weaknesses that we have now and get better at them, so later on down the road, we’re a lot stronger.”

–Field Level Media

MLB Picks and Predictions: 

For this Braves vs Rays Friday Night baseball game, I’m taking the Rays +100.

Plus receive two Free Premium Picks Today going in the Pirates vs Dodgers game.



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