Yusei Kikuchi will get the start for the Blue Jays (66-54, 31-26 home) as they host the Phillies (65-54, 31-30 away) at Rogers Centre. The Phillies will give the starting nod to Zack Wheeler. Check out my prediction for game one of this interleague matchup between the Philadelphia Phillies and Toronto Blue Jays.
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES VS TORONTO BLUE JAYS BETTING PICK
The Pick: Toronto Blue Jays -104
This game will be played at Rogers Centre at 7:07 ET on Tuesday, August 15th.
WHY BET THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS:
- The Blue Jays have gone 7-3 in their ten games at home.
- Toronto is taking on the Phillies at the right time, as the Phillies have dropped two straight games.
- Yusei Kikuchi has done a good job at avoiding the long-ball of late, having not given up a home-run in each of his past five starts.
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES TRYING TO CLOSE GAP IN NL EAST
This season, the Phillies have an overall series record of 21-15-2 and are currently 2nd in the NL East. Philadelphia’s overall record is 65-54, which includes their current two game losing streak. On the road, the Phillies are 31-30 and 34-24 at home.
As he prepares to face the Blue Jays, Philadelphia starter Zack Wheeler has been in fine form, recording a quality start in each of his last six outings. In 23 trips to the mound this season, Wheeler has posted a record of 9-5 and an ERA of 3.75. Opponents have had difficulty getting hits off him, with a batting average of .238 and an OPS of .658. The right-hander has also been effective at keeping runners off base, as evidenced by his 155 strikeouts and 25 walks for the year.
Zack Wheeler earned a victory in his most recent outing, as the Phillies defeated the Nationals 8-4. The right-hander tossed six frames of three-run, seven-hit ball to notch a quality start.
Over their last five games, the Phillies are ranked 12th in the league in scoring at 4 runs per game. Their season-long scoring average of 4.6 per contest puts them 12th in baseball. In terms of on-base percentage, Philadelphia is 9th, with an OBP currently sitting at .324. The team’s collective batting average is .256 (8th).
J.T. Realmuto has been the Phillies’ offensive leader in their last five games, hitting two home runs to bring his season total to 15. The catcher also boasts a .249 batting average.
WILL THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS TAKE CARE OF BUSINESS AT HOME?
On a record of 66-54, the Blue Jays come into today’s game 3rd in the AL East. When playing at home, they are 31-26 and 35-28 on the road. Toronto has played in 37 series thus far, and have gone 22-14-1.
The Blue Jays will turn to Yusei Kikuchi for the start, who has been impressive in his 23 appearances this season. His record stands at 9-4 with an ERA of 3.53 and a K/9 of 9.2. He has also put together a FIP of 4.52 and an OBP of .298.
Yusei Kikuchi will look to build on his previous outing, in which he pitched seven innings and gave up one earned run on three hits. Unfortunately, the Blue Jays were unable to capitalize on his performance, losing 1-0 to the Guardians.
Across their last ten games, the Blue Jays’ offense is 2nd in batting average, leading to an average of 4.9 runs per contest in that span. Overall, they are the 14th ranked scoring offense and posted a season-long OPS of .748 on 138 (15th).
Over the past ten games, Brandon Belt has been a major contributor to the Blue Jays’ offense, leading the team with two home runs. His season-long total now stands at 11 long balls, while his batting average is currently .254.