After splitting a doubleheader yesterday, the Nationals and Phillies are right back at it tonight with the third game of their four-game set. We’ll preview tonight’s game before going over which side I’ll be backing in this one.
It looked as if it was going to be a clean sweep by the Phillies yesterday after taking game one of the doubleheader 8-4 and entering the late innings in game two with a 4-2 lead. Philadelphia’s bullpen would not be able to hold that lead, though, as Joey Meneses would take not one but two Phillies relievers deep. In the 7th inning, Meneses tied the game at four with a two-run shot, and in the 9th, the first baseman would take Craig Kimbrel deep to give the Nationals a 5-4 victory.
The four-game series is still up for grabs, and as they look to secure at least a series sweep, the Nationals will send young left-hander MacKenzie Gore to the mound for his 23rd start. In his most recent outing, Gore allowed two earned runs over six innings but would ultimately take a no-decision. Overall the lefty has thrown 112 innings this season and pitched to a 4.34 ERA.
Gore was hit around quite a bit the last time he faced the Phillies, as he was knocked out of the game after 2.2 innings with seven earned runs allowed. Despite falling late in game two, the Phillies lineup did have success yesterday by recording 18 hits across the two games. In game one, Kyle Schwarber hit two home runs, and between the two games, Trea Turner went 3-7 with two doubles and an RBI. Bryce Harper and Alec Bohm would also hit home runs yesterday.
Taking the mound for the Phillies tonight will be trade deadline acquisition Michael Lorenzen, who is set to make his second start with the team. The right-hander made quite the impression on the Philadelphia faithful in his first outing with the team by working eight innings and allowing just two earned runs with five strikeouts.
Philadelphia is currently priced at (-177) on the moneyline, and I’ll be backing them for my play. The Phillies' offense has been phenomenal at home as of late, and with them facing a lefty tonight, I think that success can continue. With the way Lorenzen has thrown as of late as well, he also gives Philadelphia a nice edge on the mound.
Lorenzen will face a Nationals lineup tonight that ranks 19th in OBP, 18th in wRC+, and 17th in OPS against right-handed pitching on the road over the last month. Between Detroit and Philadelphia, Lorenzen has turned in five straight outings in which he has allowed three earned runs or fewer, so if he can give his team a similar start to the one Zack Wheeler gave in game one yesterday, he should leave his team in a good spot.
In his first game with the team, Lorenzen received four runs in run support, and I think he should be able to get the same amount, if not more, tonight. Over the last month, the Phillies' offense is hitting .295 against left-handed pitching at home while also ranking 7th in OPS and wRC+. Those numbers make Gore a solid matchup for them since he is in the 24th percentile in expected batting average and 19th percentile in xERA/xwOBA.
Philadelphia Phillies (-177)