The St. Louis Cardinals (26-22) and Atlanta Braves (26-23) will open up a National League series on Monday afternoon at Turner Field, with the first pitch scheduled for 1:10 ET

St. Louis Cardinals at Atlanta Braves 

St. Louis Cardinals SP Lance Lynn has done a great job in his first year in the starting rotation

St. Louis came away with an 8-3 home victory over the Philadelphia Phillies to avoid getting swept in the four-game series, as the club now embarks on a three-city road trip.   “That was something that we needed,” commented Cardinals manager Mike Matheny.  The Cardinals are still just 6-11 over their last 17 games, which has dropped them 1.5 games behind the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Central standings.  St. Louis is 10-8 in day games and the “over” is 12-6 in those contests.

Cardinals starting pitcher Lance Lynn (7-1, 2.54 ERA) has come back to Earth a bit in May after enjoying a tremendous April (4-0, 1.33 ERA), but is still 3-1 with a 3.64 ERA in five starts this month.  The right-hander earned a 6-3 home win over the San Diego Padres last time out, giving up three runs and eight hits over six frames, but served up his first home run in five outings.  He enters this contest with a perfect 4-0 record and 1.93 ERA in five road starts, issuing just 10 walks and striking out 31 in 32.2 frames.  Lynn suffered a 7-4 setback at home against the Braves three starts back, allowing three runs and four hits over six innings.

Atlanta has lost its last seven games, including a 7-2 home defeat to the Washington Nationals on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball.  “It’s early, but you want to win ball games,” commented Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez.  The Braves have a chance of turning things around in this series, facing an opponent that it swept in three games in St. Louis from May 11-13.  Atlanta is 0-7 when playing on Monday this season, with the “under” going 4-3 in those contests.

Braves starting pitcher Tommy Hanson (5-3, 3.12 ERA) has led the club to six wins in his 10 overall starts, but he’ll be making his first appearance at Turner Field since May 2.  The right-hander is 1-1 with a 4.86 ERA in three home starts, with opponents hitting .306 against him.  Hanson has performed well in two daytime outings, posting a 1-1 mark and 1.80 ERA, surrendering a single home run over 10 frames.  In two career outings versus the Cardinals, the 25-year-old has compiled a 1-0 record and 2.25 ERA, including a 7-4 win over Lynn on May 13.

Bettors will likely back the Cardinals due to their 8-1 record in Lynn’s last nine starts with the total being 7 to 8.5, while the Braves are 2-7 in their last nine games as a home favorite.

Pick: St. Louis Cardinals +109

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