My MLB Free Picks for May 14 through the 20 starts off on Friday, May 18. The Dodgers battle the Nationals in what’s already an important game for both teams. Who takes it? On Saturday, Colorado heads to San Francisco for a matchup versus the Giants. Will Colorado beat SF on the road? Then, on Sunday Cleveland and Houston throw down in ESPN’s nationally broadcast Sunday night baseball game. Will Houston show Cleveland that they’re ready to repeat as World Series champions?

MLB Free Picks May 14-20

L.A. Dodgers at Washington
When:  Friday, May 18 at 7:05 pm ET
Where: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.

Analysis: The L.A. Dodgers are undecided as to who will start for them on May 18. It probably won’t matter. The Dodgers have almost no shot of beating the Nationals on Friday.

Why? Washington has listed the great Max Scherzer as their Friday, May 18 starter. Scherzer has a 1.74 ERA and a .85 WHIP. Those stats aren’t even what’s most impressive about Max’s season so far. The 6 and 1 record is what’s really impressive. Oh, the 80 strikeouts in 52.1 innings pitched is pretty awesome as well.

The Dodgers have faced Scherzer 109 times. The batting average is .156. Max and the Nats dominate on Friday.

Pick: Washington

Colorado at San Francisco
When:  Saturday, May 19 at 4:05 pm ET
Where: AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA

Analysis: On May 19, the Rockies head to AT&T Park with the idea of starting Jon Gray.  Gray’s a decent pitcher. His ERA is 4.24 while his WHIP is a decent 1.22. Even his 4 and 4 record isn’t terrible.

Gray holds the Giants to a .190 batting average. He’s only faced SF batters 42 times. Still, it’s a decent average to hold the Giants to because both Coors Field and AT&T Park favor batters.

I just don’t see how Chris Stratton, SF’s listed starter, stops the Rockies from putting up at least 4 runs. I can see how Jon Gray holds SF to 1 to 3 runs.

Pick: Colorado

Cleveland at Houston
When:  Sunday, May 20 at 8:00 pm ET
Where: Minute Maid Park, Houston, TX

Analysis: Two excellent pitchers take the mound on Sunday, May 20 when the Tribe battles the Stros. Cleveland is listed as starting Corey Kluber. Kluber is 5 and 2 with a 2.62 ERA and a .81 WHIP. The defending champs bat .267 versus Kluber.

Houston counters Kluber with pitcher Lance McCullers. McCullers has a 3.72 ERA. His WHIP is 1.26. His record is 5 and 1. Who takes it in what could end up a pitchers’ duel?

I’m siding with McCullers and the Astros. Cleveland’s only faced Lance McCullers 26 times. Although they hit .467 against him, McCullers figures to make the necessary changes to control Cleveland’s bats on May 20.

Houston’s the play.

Pick: Houston