Hey folks, it’s been a while! I started to believe that I was “Mush” from the movie “A Bronx Tale”, every time I picked Philly to win in the PBP, they’d lose and vice versa. But, the powers that be want articles, so here am I. I’ll try not to screw the Phillies too much!
Nationals (+160) vs. Phillies (-190) O/U 9.0
These two squads split a doubleheader yesterday, with the Phillies taking the first game 8-4 and the Nats taking the nightcap 5-4. They met for the third game in this four-game set this evening, with the first pitch scheduled for 6:40 p.m. The Nationals are sitting in the cellar of the NL East with a mark of 50-64 while the Phightin Phils are 62-52, 10.5 games out of first but more importantly, Philly occupies the first wild-card spot, tied with the San Francisco Giants and 4.5 games ahead of the Cubs and Reds, who are both sitting outside looking in.
Nationals Pitching and Batting
The Nats hand the ball to LHP Mackenzie Gore (6-8 4.34) in tonight’s contest. Gore has been decent this year, with a 1.420 WHIP and a 26.9 SO%. He has struggled with giving up the long ball, surrendering 18 in 112 innings pitched.
More recently in his last five starts, he’s posted a 2-1 win-loss record with a 3.80 ERA and a WHIP of 1.227. He’s been a little on the lucky side, however, with a BABIP of .246, which explains why his FIP is 4.88. This would indicate that regression towards more runs is a distinct possibility.
For the season, the Nationals have been a very mixed bag. They are 5th in the majors with 1,011 hits but 28th in home runs with 104. Their OPS of .720 is just below the league average of .733. While they definitely lack pop, it’s clear that hitting is not what ails the Nats.
Over their last five games, Washington’s offense has been even more impressive, batting .262 as a team with 12 doubles and 10 home runs and an OPS of .820. They could pose a bit of a problem for Philly’s pitching.
Their bullpen, however, is a different story. Their 5.07 ERA is the 3rd-highest in the majors and the 61 home runs they have served up is the 2nd-worst in baseball after Oakland’s 62 gopher balls.
Phillies Pitching and Batting
Newly acquired RHP Michael Lorenzen (6-7 3.48) makes his first start in Citizens Bank Park tonight. He was sharp in his debut with the Phillies, going 8 strong innings and allowing only 2 runs, all earned while giving up six hits and one walk versus five strikeouts. With that performance, the Phillies’ major trade deadline acquisition made an emphatic statement that he will be very valuable to this club.
What has plagued Philadelphia all season long has been inconsistency on the offensive front. They sport a .255 batting average. Their power numbers have been a bit off this year, with only 128 home runs, which is eight behind the league average. Injuries initially to Bryce Harper and Rhys Hoskins are certainly culprits in that, but the disappointing inaugural season of SS Trea Turner is also to blame. Turner is only batting .241 for the season with 11 homers. However, in the last five games, he’s heated up a bit, going 7-19 (.368) with four doubles and one dinger.
Lorezen was very impressive in his debut. The Nats are a below-average hitting team against right-handed pitching. The Phillies have won 40 games this year by more than one run and that is the play here.
Bets and Season Record
Philadelphia Phillies -1.5 runs 3 units
Up 0.5 units (+$50)