The NL East leading Philadelphia Phillies welcome in the struggling Washington Nationals for the second game of their series on Saturday. The Phillies snatched game one with a 4-2 win. A low scoring affair saw both pitchers, Jeremy Hellickson, and Jack Eickhoff, snag quality starts. The battle of the bullpens would favor the Fightin’ Phils after that. Today’s matchup should be another good showdown on the mound as Jake Arrieta is facing Patrick Corbin. Both of these pitchers both bring in an ERA around 3.50 and have given their teams a chance in every game they have pitched.
Line – Philadelphia -115, Washington -105
Spread – Philadelphia -1.5
O/U – 8
First Pitch – 6:05 p.m. CT at Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The post-Bryce Harper Nationals have been struggling as they have now lost seven of nine games. Their offense quite simply isn’t doing enough. The Nats bolster a team batting average of .247 and have a low home run count. Corbin has a 1.06 WHIP and will walk about one in every four batters. Those are solid numbers from your starting pitcher. If the Nationals stutter too much longer, the Phillies are going to run away with this division in a hurry. If they want to turn this thing around, gaining a game today would be a good way to start.
The NL East should take notice because this Phillies squad is starting to catch a heater. Granted, playing the Marlins and Tigers can do that to anyone. Nonetheless, Philadelphia has been doing a little bit of everything over this six-game stretch. They have won the game with their bats a few times, have allowed two runs or less three times over this stretch, and have been building chemistry all while doing it. The Nationals have some batters who have had some success over the Arrieta in the past. As a team, they are ripping .259 off of the former Cy Young Award Winner and get on base over 35% of the time.
Analysis & Prediction
Weather will not be an issue in today’s game as temperatures are set to climb up to 74 in Philly with only a small chance of precipitation. I’m liking everything with the Nationals today. They have several players with success off of Arrieta and they may want to show Bryce Harper that they don’t need him to win games. I’m going to spread some money on the Nats moneyline and hedge it with Nats +1.5.
BONUS PICK: The Kentucky Derby is today. I don’t know shit about horse racing, but spread some love on the longshots, Gray Magician and Master Fencer (50/1). If they win, you’ll be happy. If they lose, grab a beer. It’s just money. Let’s have ourselves a day.
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