Mets vs. Nationals odds, line: 2021 MLB Opening Day picks, predictions from proven computer model

The New York Mets and Washington Nationals both expect to be dramatically improved when they square off on Thursday as part of MLB Opening Day 2021. Each team made a flurry of moves in the offseason after finishing with identical 26-34 records and tying for last place in the National League East in 2020, a season that ended with the Nationals winning three straight against the Mets. A high-octane pitching matchup is on tap for the 7:05 p.m. ET game as New York sends Jacob deGrom to the mound to face Washington’s Max Scherzer. The Nationals announced on Wednesday that one unnamed player tested positive for COVID-19, so roster adjustments could be on the way before first pitch. 

New York is the -145 favorite (risk $145 to win $100) on the money line at William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for runs scored is 6.5 in the latest Mets vs. Nationals odds. Before making any Nationals vs. Mets picks, check out the latest 2021 MLB Opening Day predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.

This model, which simulates every pitch of every game 10,000 times, had a banner 2019 season, the league’s last full schedule. The model returned more than $1,400 on its top-rated money-line and run-line MLB picks, and anyone who followed it saw huge rewards.

Now, the model has dialed in on Mets vs. Nationals. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the MLB lines and trends for Nationals vs. Mets:

  • Mets vs. Nationals money line: New York -145; Washington +135
  • Mets vs. Nationals run line: New York -1.5
  • Mets vs. Nationals over-under: 6.5 runs
  • NYM: The Mets topped the NL with a .272 batting average in 2020
  • WASH: The Nationals gave up an NL-high 94 homers last year

Featured Game | Washington Nationals vs. New York Mets

Why you should back the Mets 

It’s hard not to like New York’s chances behind deGrom, who finished third in the NL Cy Young Award voting in 2020 after winning it in each of the previous two years. He finished 4-2 with a 2.38 ERA while holding the opposition to a .190 batting average in 12 starts last season. The 33-year-old right-hander owns an 8-4 record and 2.61 ERA in 20 career starts versus Washington and is 7-1 with a 2.80 ERA in 11 outings at Nationals Park.

The Mets made a blockbuster deal in the offseason to bolster their offense, acquiring four-time All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor from Cleveland. Lindor swatted a combined 103 homers from 2017-19, adding more pop to a lineup that already features Pete Alonso, who clubbed a major league-best 53 home runs as a rookie in 2019. Lindor, James McCann and first baseman Dominic Smith (team-high 42 RBIs in 2020) all went deep four times in spring training.

Why you should back the Nationals

Start at the top or the batting order with perhaps the best 1-2 punch in the major leagues. Despite Washington’s surprising last-place finish in 2020, the tandem of shortstop Trea Turner and outfielder Juan Soto combined for 25 homers and 78 RBIs while batting .335 and .351, respectively. The Nationals added a pair of power bats in offseason acquisitions Kyle Schwarber and Josh Bell, who combined to club 10 home runs in the preseason.

Ryan Zimmerman, who opted to sit out the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns, also had a huge exhibition season with six homers and 15 RBIs in only 27 at-bats. Scherzer, a three-time Cy Young Award winner, beat the Mets in his final start last season to improve his career numbers to 12-5 with a 2.70 ERA against them. Washington hopes its back-of-the-bullpen issues were solved with the signing of Brad Hand, who led the majors with 16 saves last season.

How to make Nationals vs. Mets picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning over on the total, as the teams combine for 9.2 runs in the simulations, and it also says one side of the money line has all the value. You can only see the pick at SportsLine

So who wins Nationals vs. Mets? And which side of the money line has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the money line to jump on Thursday, all from the advanced model that returned more than $1,400 in 2019.

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