graded play on the Phillies as they take on the Marlins in a
three game series. Both teams have zero
playoff aspirations at this point of the season. In fact, the Marlins and
Phillies are competing against each other to stay out of
the NL East basement.
The Phillies are 52-62 on the
season, but for the first time this season, they have a nearly healthy roster.
Utley is hitting better and with more power than he has in recent seasons. Ryan Howard is finally starting to put the bat on the ball, and the emergence of
backup catcher Eric Kratz, who is hitting .333 (15-for-45) has made the
team play better with each passing series.
Cole Hamels signed a huge $144
million contract extension just before the trade deadline. In his first start
after that boost in income, he walked a career high six batters, but since he
has been outstanding. On the season, Hamels has gone 12-6 with a 3.08 ERA and a
1.12 WHIP, striking out 153 batters in 154 ? innings of work over 22 starts. He ranks 7th in the NL with 12 wins,
seventh with 154 ? innings pitched, fifth with 153 strikeouts, 10th with a 3.08
ERA, and ninth with a 1.12 WHIP.
He is predominantly a fastball
and changeup starter. His change is one of the best in all of
baseball; batters are hitting just .181 on that pitch. His fastball is
excellent as well with batters hitting just .244 on that pitch. He will mix in
a curveball equally to both right and left-handed batters. His three pitches
are all ‘elite’ grade by the majority of scouting reports.
He can push the fastball up to 95
MPH, but throws it normally between 91 and 92 MPH. He will sacrifice the extra
speed for location, and this in turn sets up the change. His change is between
79 and 87 MPH and averages 83 MPH. It has been proven that the most effective
speed differential between fastball and off speed pitch is 10 MPH, and that is
exactly where Hamels is with his pitches. Moreover, when he throws the change
for strikes, it makes the fastball look upper 90’s to the batter’s eye, making
it even more difficult to get the timing down.
When the Marlins sent Ramirez to
the Dodgers, one of the returns was acquiring Eovaldi. He had the worst run
support of any starting pitcher in baseball when he was with the Dodgers. He
received 19 runs in his 10 starts and had four or more runs in just two of
those 10 starts with the Dodgers. He has posted a 5.11 ERA with a horrid 2.109
WHIP, walking nine batters and striking out just eight batters over his last
three starts spanning 12 ? innings of work.
MLB odds makers currently list the Phillies as -158 favorites with the total at 7.5.
Miami is just 13-34, losing 18.4 units per one
unit wagered against the money line as a home underdog of +100 or higher in
games played over the last two seasons; 6-16 losing 12.3 units against the
money line in home games after a game where the bullpen was hit hard for four
or more runs over the last three seasons; 3-14 losing 11.9 units per one unit
wagered against the money line after three straight games without a stolen base
Pick: Take Philadelphia