The New York Mets will look to continue their winning ways when they travel to Oracle Park to take on the San Francisco Giants in the first game of a four-game weekend series. First pitch is set for 9:45 p.m. ET. Rookie sensation Kodai Senga (2-0, 3.38 ERA) will take the mound for New York against San Francisco lefty Sean Manaea (0-0, 4.76).
The Mets are -125 favorites on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook, while the Giants are minor +105 underdogs. The run total sits at 8.5
Mets-Giants picks: Thursday, April 20
Day to day: OF Starling Marte (neck)
Out: SP Carlos Carrasco, (right elbow inflammation), SP Justin Verlander (right teres major strain), OF Tim Locastro (back spasms)
Out: SP Alex Wood (left hamstring strain), OF Joc Pederson (left wrist inflammation), OF Austin Slater (left hamstring strain), OF Bryce Johnson (concussion), OF Mitch Haniger (Grade 1 left oblique strain)
Kodai Senga vs. Sean Manaea
The last time we saw a Mets starter on the mound, Max Scherzer was getting tossed over a substance check. Now, Senga will get the ball today looking to put that in the rearview mirror. Senga’s had a good start to his MLB career, as he’s allowed six earned runs over 16 innings. The last time out, Senga had a bit of a rough start, as he allowed four runs in 4.2 innings against the Oakland Athletics.
Like Senga, Manaea is coming off a rough start, as he only went 3.1 innings his last time out in a Giants loss to the Detroit Tigers. Manaea’s pitched worse than the stats indicate this season, as he enters play today with an expected ERA of 7.44. Manaea’s biggest struggle has been with his slider, which batters are hitting .364 off of.
Both of these offenses have had some success lately, as the Mets have scored five or more runs in five of their last nine games while the Giants have scored five-plus runs in five of their last seven games. I think that trend plays out again tonight, as both Senga and Manaea have had some struggles this year.
Pick: Over 8.5
Both of these teams have been pretty inconsistent to start the season, so I’m backing the Mets talent and pitching. The Mets have some some experience against Manaea (Tommy Pham, Francisco Lindor and Eduardo Escobar have all hit home runs off him), while Senga can rack up strikeouts in bunches (82nd percentile in strikeout rate). My biggest x-factor is the bullpens, as the Mets have a fairly average bullpen (3.53 ERA) while the Giants bullpen has struggled recently (5.29 ERA).