Philadelphia Phillies (49-81; 59-61-10 O/U) vs. Miami Marlins (66-65; 68-56-7 O/U)
MLB: Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 7:10pm EST
Line: Miami -161/Philadelphia +145
The Miami Marlins and the Philadelphia Phillies will open a four game divisional series Thursday night from Marlins Park. The Phillies will give the call to 25-year old right-hander Ben Lively, and the Marlins will counter with 30-year old right-hander Odrisamer Despaigne. The Marlins lead the season series 7-4.
Lively Crushed by Cubs in Worst Start of Season
Ben Lively will make his tenth start of the season, aiming for his first win since early June. Lively was roughed up un his latest effort, serving up six runs in five innings to the Cubs, and was tagged with the loss to drop his record to 1-5. The rookie right-hander has pitched well with the exception of his previous start, and now owns a 4.36 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP in 53.2 innings pitched on the season. Lively had only allowed four home runs all season before he allowed four homers in his disastrous outing to the Cubs last weekend. Rhys Hoskins is showing no signs of slowing down at the plate, belting another five home runs along with 14 RBI’s over his last six games. The rookie left fielder is off to a spectacular start to his Major League career, currently hitting .309 with 11 home runs and 25 RBI’s in 19 games played. Hoskins has recorded at least one hit in all but five games this season.
The Phillies are currently scoring an average of 4.12 runs per game, ranking them 28th in the Majors, and are hitting .249 as a team. The Philadelphia pitching owns a weak 4.72 team ERA, positioning them 24th in the Major Leagues.
Despaigne Shines in Win Over Padres
Odrisamer Despaigne will make his 12th appearance and third start of the season, aiming for his first win. Despaigne was outstanding in his previous start this past weekend, limiting the Padres to only one run in six innings and finished with the no decision in a game the Marlins won. The young right-hander has pitched primarily in a relief role and has allowed 15 runs (10 earned) in his 24.1 innings pitched on the season, resulting in a 3.70 ERA and a 0-1 record. He pitched 2.2 scoreless innings of relief in his lone action against the Phillies this season and has now allowed five runs in 5.1 career innings against Philadelphia. J.T. Realmuto has contributed to the Marlins offensive surge this month, driving in ten runs over his last 13 games. The 26-year old catcher is having a very strong season, currently hitting .276 with 16 home runs and 56 RBI’s. Realmuto is 10 for 38 with eight RBI’s against the Phillies this season.
The Marlins are currently averaging 4.75 runs per game, ranking them 15th in the Majors, and feature a strong .265 team batting average. The Miami pitching is carrying a subpar 4.61 team ERA, placing them 20th overall.
The Philadelphia Phillies are:
- under is 4-1 in their last 5 road games against a team with a winning record.
- under is 6-2-1 in Lively’s last 9 starts.
The Miami Marlins are:
- under is 3-1-1 in their last 5 Thursday games.
I am taking the under in this matchup. Lively has pitched well with the exception of his latest start, as he had allowed a total of only six runs over his last three starts prior to his previous outing. In addition, Despaigne just tossed six innings of one run ball in his latest action, and he features a stifling 2.55 ERA in his 17.2 innings pitched this month, so I am confident he can contain the Phillies weak offense.