It’s the start of a series between NL East rivals in the City of Brotherly Love. The Miami Marlins are on the road to kick off a three-game series with the Philadelphia Phillies Friday night. Miami was slated to play a doubleheader Thursday against the Mets on the road to close a four-game set: they had split the first two games after getting drubbed 13-0 Wednesday. Philadelphia was swept in their three-game series at home against the Nationals, losing 5-1 on Wednesday night. The Marlins took two of three in the last series between the teams, which came in Miami September 3-5.
Miami Marlins Seek to Extend Philadelphia’s Woes
Miami was stuck playing a doubleheader Thursday, which was thanks to some unfavorable weather in the northeast. The Marlins were drubbed Wednesday night and fell to 57-87 on the season, leaving them 24 games behind Atlanta in the NL East race. Miami finished with just five hits, all singles, and no player had more than one. Derek Dietrich had the only hit with a runner in scoring position but it didn’t translate to any runs on the board. Trevor Richards (3-9) took the loss on the mound as he allowed six runs (four earned) on seven hits with one walk and two strikeouts over five innings. Ben Meyer was roughed up in relief as he gave up seven runs on six hits with two walks and a strikeout in two-thirds of an innings.
Wei-Yin Chen makes his 24th start of the year for the Marlins in this contest. He comes in 6-10 with a 4.72 ERA, a 1.318 WHIP, 42 walks and 98 strikeouts over 118.1 innings of work this season. Chen took the loss in his last start, which came Saturday on the road against the Pirates. He threw four innings, allowing three runs on five hits with two walks and six strikeouts in a 5-1 Marlins loss. Chen is 2-1 with a 2.00 ERA, a 1.00 WHIP, four walks and 23 strikeouts over 18 innings of action in his last three starts. He makes his eighth career appearance and seventh start against the Nationals here: he is 1-4 with a 3.62 ERA, a 1.313 WHIP, five walks and 33 strikeouts over 37.1 innings. Chen is 0-3 with a 4.91 ERA, a 1.418 WHIP, two walks and 16 strikeouts over 18.1 innings in four career appearances, three starts, at Citizens Bank Park.
Philadelphia Phillies Sliding in September
Philadelphia continued their late season meltdown that could cost them a playoff spot. Their loss to Washington Wednesday left them with five straight defeats and dropped them to 74-71 on the year, 7.5 games behind Atlanta in the NL East entering Thursday. The Phillies were 6.5 games behind St. Louis for the second wild card spot as they dropped to 2-9 this month. Philadelphia trailed 3-0 before they got to hit and that was a deep enough hole on Wednesday. J.P. Crawford (run, RBI) had three hits, including his third homer of the year, to account for the Phillies’ run. The rest of the team was a combined two for 28 with Carlos Santana adding a double while Asdrubal Cabrera singled. Aaron Nola (16-5) took the loss as he allowed four runs on six hits with a walk and five strikeouts over five innings.
Zach Eflin logs his 22nd start of the year for the Phillies in this contest. He comes in 9-7 with a 4.42 ERA, a 1.289 WHIP, 30 walks and 107 strikeouts over 114 innings of action on the year. Eflin took the loss in his last start, which came on the road against the Mets Saturday. He allowed six runs on four hits with three walks and five strikeouts over three innings of a game the Phillies lost 10-5. Eflin is 0-3 with an 8.10 ERA, a 1.88 WHIP, six walks and 14 strikeouts over 13.1 innings of work in his last three starts. He makes his fourth career start against the Marlins in this contest. In those outings, he is 1-1 with a 5.21 ERA, a 1.053 WHIP, four walks and 11 strikeouts over 19 innings of action. Eflin is 7-8 with a 4.74 ERA, a 1.237 WHIP, 26 walks and 93 strikeouts over 114 innings in 19 career starts at Citizens Bank Park.
- Phillies are 10-1 in their last 11 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400
- Phillies are 7-3 in their last 10 Friday games
- Marlins are 3-12 in their last 15 during game 1 of a series
- Marlins are 1-6 in their last 7 Friday games
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Philadelphia finds itself in must-win mode after starting September with nine losses in 11 games. Their current five-game skid has been mirrored by the Braves’ winning five in a row, turning a 2.5 game deficit into a season-worst 7.5 games. The Marlins are going to be gassed after a doubleheader Thursday while the Phillies had a day off to regroup. Look for Philadelphia to take advantage and put this one in the win column.
Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies -175
Full-Game Total Pick
The Phillies have been atrocious lately, both at the plate and on the mound. It makes one wonder if their younger players hit the wall and the team really was a year or so ahead of schedule. Perhaps it all caught up with them down the stretch. Miami has nothing to play for but to try and ruin things for other teams. Everyone knew the Marlins were going to be terrible this season after they dealt away Stanton, Yelich and Ozuna in the offseason. Could Miami keep Philadelphia reeling?
The under is 5-0-1 in the Phillies’ last 6 Friday games, 5-0-1 in their last 6 during game 1 of a series, 6-1-1 in their last 8 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 5-1-1 in their last 7 games following an off day and 9-2-1 in their last 12 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400. The teams have seen the under go 8-3-1 in their last 12 meetings: look for this one to stay the course as both teams have to show some offensive consistency.
Prediction: Under 8.5
Full-Game Prop Bet
Chen has struggled at Citizens Bank Park in his career and that’s something that one has to be concerned with here. Even with his successful outings of late with two wins in his last three starts, he has had problems on the road this season. Chen has been atrocious on the road this season, posting a 1-7 mark with a 9.13 ERA, a 2.04 WHIP, 20 walks and 32 strikeouts over 47.1 innings in his 11 starts away from Marlins Park. The Phillies, even with their issues lately, should be able to squeeze past the number.
Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies Over 4.5 -110
First Five Innings Side Pick
Philadelphia is in dire straits if they want to stay in the playoff picture as they have drifted in the NL East race. The Phillies get the advantage of being at home with an off day in their pocket while Miami was losing both ends of a doubleheader in New York. Eflin has struggled since coming back up from the minors but the Phillies, knowing what’s at stake, especially with seven of their last 11 games against the Braves. Philadelphia knows they need wins now and they should hold the edge after five innings.
Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies -175
First Five Innings Total Bet
The Phillies have struggled to put runs on the board this month, averaging just 3.1 runs per game in their 11 games in September. Chen has been pitching better of late with two wins in his last three starts. He’s allowed three runs or less in each of his last four starts, including an eight inning, one run showing against the Blue Jays. With Chen starting to pitch better late in the season and the Phillies scuffling offensively, this one should be under the number after five innings.
Prediction: Under 4.5 -120
First Five Innings Prop Prediction
While Eflin has struggled since coming back up from the minors last month, the fact remains that the Phillies are still trying to stay in the playoff picture. Philadelphia has to be able to take advantage of these games against the Marlins and Mets in order for their games against Atlanta to mean something. Chen has been awful on the road and his struggles at Citizens Bank Park aren’t inspiring either. The Phillies should be able to get on the board first in this contest.
Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies to Score First -105