In the last of a three-game series between the Philadelphia Phillies (60-72) and the Washington Nationals (77-55) at Citizens Bank Park, Adam Morgan (1-8, 6.50 ERA) and Gio Gonzalez (9-9, 4.25 ERA) get the start. The Nationals won the last game 3-2, and Washington leads the series 2-0. The game starts at 7:05 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Aug. 31 and will air on CSPh and MAS2.
In his most recent outing, Morgan pitched 5.0 innings, allowing six runs, striking out eight and walking two in a 9-4 loss to the Mets. Ryan Howard (.196, 30 Rs, 20 HRs, 45 RBIs) went 1 for 3 yesterday with one run, one home run, and two RBIs. The Nationals were victorious over the Rockies 8-5 the last time Gonzalez pitched. He went 6.0 innings, allowing two runs, striking out five and walking one. Daniel Murphy (.344, 81 Rs, 25 HRs, 98 RBIs, 3 SBs) went 1 for 4 yesterday with one run.
The Over/Under (O/U) for this game is set at nine runs and Philadelphia is a considerable +170 underdog. The Phillies are 42-58 as the underdog and have an overall money line of +493. They have a 23-28 record SU and are 14-20 as the underdog within their division. Division games have been tough for the Phillies. Philadelphia has only averaged 3.0 runs per game compared to its 3.7 season average. Whenever an NL East opponent shows up on the calendar, the Phillies pitch better. They allow an average of 4.8 runs per game, but allow just 4.3 against teams from their own division.
On the other side, the Nationals have a nice record of 66-38 when they are favored, but are -325 overall with the money line. Against divisional foes, they are 36-16 SU and have played well as the favorite with a 31-12 record. They sport the fourth-ranked offense in the NL, averaging 4.8 runs per game. Washington's pitching staff and defense as a whole have been firing on all cylinders so far, ranking second in the NL with only 3.8 runs allowed per game. They have a WHIP of 1.181, second best in the MLB. The Washington pitching staff has been an intimidating group on the road this year, averaging 8.6 strikeouts per game.
The Nationals had the upper hand against the Phillies in their previous 14 games this season, earning a 10-4 record. This game will feature Gonzalez (LHP) on the mound against the Phillies, who have a 14-15 record when they take on a left-handed starter. Taking the hill against the Nationals will be the left-hander Morgan. They sport a 17-13 record against southpaws.
Predictions: SU Winner - WAS, O/U - Over
The Nationals hold a 37-16 record in matchups against NL East Division rivals, while the Phillies currently sit at 23-29 in these games.
Philadelphia has won 48% (30-33) of its games when leading after seven innings. However, Washington has won 58% (33-24) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Nationals are coming into this game after allowing two walks during their last outing. The Phillies have a 24-51 record when opponents give up two walks or less.
When they are outhit, the Phillies are 14-58. The Nationals have a 13-32 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking 23rd in home runs, Philadelphia has hit 133 this season. Washington ranks sixth with 175 home runs.
Ranking 14th, Philadelphia is in the top half of the league in hits, notching 8.05 per game. Washington ranks in the top 10 at eighth with 8.75.
Ranking 30th, Philadelphia is at the bottom of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.685). Washington ranks in the top 10 at ninth with an OPS of .763.
The Nationals are 43-44 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Phillies are 27-57 when they allow at least one homer.