The Los Angeles Dodgers (67-45, 31-25 away) begin an East Coast swing with a three-game National League series against the Philadelphia Phillies (59-53, 34-21 home). Los Angeles is 2-1 against the Phillies head-to-head this season.
The first pitch for Tuesday’s contest is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. EST at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA. Oddsmakers have the Dodgers (-155) as the betting favorite and the over/under run total posted at 8.5.
What to Know – Los Angeles Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers roll into the series opener after taking two of three from the Los Angeles Angels this weekend. Los Angeles owns a 3.5 game lead for the top spot in the NL wild-card race and sits four games behind the San Fransico Giants in the NL West.
On the mound for the Dodgers is expected to be Max Scherzer (9-4, 2.75 ERA, 0.89 WHIP). Scherzer was dealt to the Dodgers in a blockbuster trade and logged his first start with LA last week. The 37-year old right-hander fired 7.0 innings against the Houston Astros, surrendering two earned runs on five hits with 10 strikeouts in the victory.
Los Angeles’ offense is one of the best in the MLB, ranking second in on-base percentage (.335) and ninth in slugging percentage (.424). Third baseman Justin Turner leads the team with 66 runs batted in, and first baseman Max Muncy paces the squad in home runs with 22 home runs. Outfielder Chris Taylor ranks sixth in the league in runs scored (80).
What to Know – Philadelphia Phillies
The Philadelphia Phillies carries an eight-game winning streak into Tuesday night’s contest, the team’s longest of the season. After sweeping the New York Mets, the Phillies have taken over the top spot in the NL East and now own a two-game lead over the Atlanta Braves.
The expected starter for Philadelphia is ace Aaron Nola (7-6, 4.49 ERA, 1.16 WHIP). Nola will try and rebound from a shaky outing in his first start of the month last week. The right-hander allowed five earned runs on five hits over 5.0 innings of work in a no-decision against the Washington Nationals.
Offensively, the Phillies sit in 11th place amongst MLB teams with a .320 on-base percentage and 15th in slugging percentage (.411). First baseman Rhys Hoskins is putting together career-best at the plate with a team-high 24 home runs and 68 RBIs. Outfielder Bryce Harper continues to be a problem at the dish, batting .302 with 20 home runs, 45 RBIs, and 65 runs scored.
The Pick is In
Two of the top teams in the NL square off Tuesday night, with two of the top pitchers taking the mound. Sherzer had faced the Phillies three times when he was with the Nationals, winning all three matchups and holding Philadelphia to only four total runs over 19.2 innings.
This will be Nola’s first time facing the Dodgers lineup this season, and the 28-year old will need a much better performance on the mound if the Phillies want to run their winning streak to nine games.
We will avoid picking sides here and lean on the two aces holding the offenses from getting going in this one.
The Pick: Dodgers/Phillies UNDER 8.5 runs