The San Diego Padres were never going to catch the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West after their trade-deadline flurry, but they were expected to comfortably make the playoffs.
Maybe they will eventually run away with a wild-card spot, but it hasn't been easy.
The Padres are 10-13 since the deadline. Fernando Tatis Jr. got suspended for PEDs. Josh Hader has been a surprising disaster. Not much has gone right.
It doesn't get easier for the Padres on Monday night. The Padres face the San Francisco Giants and their red-hot starter Carlos Rodon. The Giants are a -135 favorite at BetMGM.
Over Rodon's last five starts, he has a 1.41 ERA. He has a 41-2 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 31.1 innings. Rodon has been incredible.
The Padres do lead the Milwaukee Brewers by 1.5 games for the final wild-card spot in the NL. The Brewers have been mediocre at best since the deadline too so maybe the Padres win the spot by default. But it wasn't supposed to be this much of a struggle.
Here's the first look at the sports betting slate for Monday:
Anything but baseball?
The NFL preseason is done, and there's no random Monday night college football game. There's no WNBA playoffs or English Premier League soccer. It's a really light Monday. Don't worry, football will be in full swing soon.
Eight games for MLB
It's a pretty thin MLB schedule, too, with only eight games. As has been the case since the trade deadline, there are a lot of big favorites. All but two teams have a favorite of -185 or longer.
The most competitive game is the Boston Red Sox vs. Minnesota Twins. The Twins are -120 favorites. The Red Sox are four games under .500 and the Twins have faded after leading the AL Central for much of the first half.
What's the best bet?
I'll ride with Carlos Rodon and the Giants, though it's not the worst day to sit out and look over NFL futures or college football lines for the weekend.