After dropping the series finale to the Padres, the Phillies stay home to host the Los Angeles Dodgers. L.A will be looking to return the favor after the Phillies surprisingly caught fire on their turf just one weekend ago. Will history repeat itself?
The tale of the tape
The Phillies seem like a significantly quieter team since their explosion in Los Angeles and a lot of that has to do with Bryce Harper’s absence. The team drummed home a staggering 33 runs over 4 games last weekend, but against the Padres, were only able to manage 3 over as many games. Harper accounted for 5 of those runs.
We don’t know if Bryce will be back for today’s game, but he did miss all three of the games against San Diego and is listed as day-to-day. I’m sure he’ll make his presence felt over the weekend somehow.
The Phils rank 6th in the MLB in home runs, 3rd in slugging, and 5th in OBPS. It’s all coming together offensively, even if at a macro level it can seem inconsistent at times. However, they’re sitll kicking and screaming to stay above .500, with defensive woes holding the keys it seems.
On the inverse, the pitching was rock solid against the Padres. Kyle Gibson was electric, Zack Wheeler pitched a shutout, and in total, the Phils only surrendered 6 runs over 3 games. They’ll need that trend to continue against a Dodgers offense that is stacked with star-power and seems to have rebounded nicely from the losses dealt by Philly.
Julio Urias (2-3, 3.00 ERA) vs Ranger Suarez (4-1, 3.72 ERA)
These two pitchers will slug it out again just six days removed from their last encounter that saw the Phillies win 8-3. It was an uncharacteristically poor day at the office from Urias, but his 3.00 ERA speaks for itself, as does the fact that he was a Cy Young finalist last year after going 20-3 with a 2.93 ERA.
As for Suarez, he really seems to have found a rhythm. He’s gone six innings deep in each of his last four games and has been able to stun some potent offenses in the process. He may well have the antidote to a Dodgers offense that ranks third in OPS, 1st in runs, and 2nd in RBI.
Predictably, the Phillies are underdogs here against the 25-12 Dodgers. However, with the run-total at 9, I think we could play the under here and take last weekend as an anomaly. This pitching matchup is a strong one, the Phillies have been without Bryce for 3 games, and while the Dodgers haven’t slowed down at all, this pitching matchup may just hold them long enough for the under to come in.
If you’re betting the Phillies, parlay the under. If you’re betting the Dodgers, maybe do the opposite.
AP Photo/Chris Szagola