A swing and a miss for the Philadelphia Phillies last night. With a chance to follow-up a walk-off victory off with a momentum generating win, the Phillies fell flat and lost by a run, 5-4, to the lowly Pirates. The Phillies were really close to going 0-2 into today against the Pirates at home. They can’t be doing that this time of the season.
While Bryce Harper’s former team rises up, the Phillies are stuck in mud struggling to get over the hump. Another winnable game out the door for the Phillies. They are adding up fast for the Phillies, who will have time to count all of them in October if they don’t get their act together.
The Phillies enter Wednesday with a record of 68-63, which puts them two games behind the Cubs for the final wildcard. The Cubbies found a big win in New York against the Mets a night ago. They were losers in three straight games, but bounced back nicely behind a strong performance by Yu Darvish. Darvish is one of the keys for a long postseason run for the Cubs.
Philadelphia hope to leapfrog the Cubs and send them packing on vacation, though. The Nationals seem to be out of reach for the Phils and have homefield in the Wild Card Game under control. A poor showing by Drew Smyly in the 1st inning sank the Phillies last night.
He ultimately settled down, but still left the game with 9 hits and 4 earned runs on his resume. Vince Velasquez will look for better results in this one on Wednesday. The Pirates are expected to counter with Mitch Keller. Head below for our free Pirates vs. Phillies pick.
Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Philadelphia Phillies Pick:
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Mitch Keller goes into Philadelphia for his first ever start against the Phillies. He is a rookie with just six games of experience. Half of his appearances have been really good, but the other half have been abysmal efforts. The Pirates hope that the real Keller is the guy that we watched against the Reds in his most recent outing. Keller was sharp with just 1 earned run allowed in 6 innings of work. This was after he got hammered against the Cubs.
The Cubs touched Keller up for 7 hits and 6 earned runs in 4.1 innings. He has also allowed 6 earned runs in two other outings. In the three games he was good, it wasn’t the best of offenses. He looked good against the Tigers, Angels, and Reds. When he has been his bad, it’s mostly been on the road. Keller holds an ERA of 9.75 and 2.33 WHIP on the road in 2019.
In his good starts, he was averaging over a baserunner per inning, so it wasn’t blemish free for him despite the nice results. The Phillies are a flaky offense who get hot and cold like the changing of the wind in the atmosphere. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the Phillies bring out the bats after a slow night Tuesday. That’s just how the Phillies have been playing like this season.
Velasquez is coming off an awful performance against the Marlins in Miami. He allowed 5 hits and 7 earned runs in 2.1 innings for a poor showing at the office. However, Velasquez has been a better pitcher at home in Philadelphia, with a 4.22 ERA as opposed to a 5.31 ERA on the road. He’s allowed 3 or less runs in eight of nine appearances at home as a starter and reliever. The most runs he’s allowed was against the Dodgers with 4. The inconsistent Phillies respond after a loss with their second win three days against the Pirates.