After winning a series against the bottom-dwelling Washington Nationals, the Philadelphia Phillies now head to St. Louis to take on Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, and the Cardinals. The two teams find themselves in one of the hottest races in all of baseball, the race for the third Wild Card spot in the National League.
Updated Wild Card Standings
The Philadelphia Phillies and the St. Louis Cardinals remain in a deadlock for the third and final Wild Card spot for the postseason. Philadelphia technically has the advantage over St. Louis by percentage points but the race is too close to call at this point.
Winning this three-game series will be critical to the Phillies as they fight for their first postseason appearance since 2011 where they were knocked out by, you guessed it, the St. Louis Cardinals.
Philadelphia Phillies/Washington Nationals Pitching Matchup
This evening, Phillies’ star pitcher Zack Wheeler (7-4, 2.66 ERA) takes the mound for Philadelphia in a rematch against Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright (6-6, 3.26 ERA). When they last met just last week, it was Wheeler who got the better of Wainwright as the Phillies took a four-run lead against the long-time Cardinals pitcher while Zack Wheeler went seven scoreless innings.
This time around the Philadelphia Phillies are rooting for the same result but with their offense struggling over the past two games, they’ll need to lean on their pitcher tonight.
Four of the last five starts for Zack Wheeler have been quality starts and in that time, the Phillies’ pitcher has a record of 3-1 with a 1.76 ERA while also posting a WHIP of 0.88. That’s some Cy Young worthy stuff right there and while it’s a clearly small sample size, it’s still representative of the pitcher Wheeler has shown he can be for some time now.
Wheeler has seemingly found his groove and the hope is that he can keep this up as the Phillies will need him at the top of his game not just against St. Louis, but to stay in the playoff hunt as well.
St. Louis Cardinals
For St. Louis, Adam Wainwright takes the mound looking once again to show the consistency that has made him one of the most consistent pitchers in Cardinals history. On the season, Wainwright’s record may not be much to write home about but he has pitched to the tune of 3.26 with a WHIP of 1.27 in 16 games.
Wainwright has been more than fine for the Cardinals but he’s lost his previous three against the Philadelphia Phillies. That trend will continue if Kyle Schwarber and the Phillies have anything to say about it.
Tonight’s game is a straight pitchers duel. Taking the under (7.5) seems like the smart bet tonight between Wheeler and Wainwright facing off and the offenses of both Philadelphia and St. Louis struggling as of late.
If you’re taking Philadelphia in this game aim for the moneyline (-125) over the spread (-1.5 at +140) as this game could be a close one.