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One of the first two games on Monday’s night busy MLB schedule is the meeting of NL Wild Card Contenders in the San Francisco Giants (65-59) and the Philadelphia Phillies (67-57). Two teams will meet in a three-game series in Philadelphia starting on Monday.
This is a series that might not determine the future of the NL Wildcard spots as both of these teams are talented and deep enough to grab the Wildcard spots, if not win their respective divisions.
These past few weeks haven’t been easy for the Giants as they come off consecutive series against serious World Series contenders in the Texas Rangers, the Tampa Bay Rays, and the Atlanta Braves. In that span, the Giants have won three of their last nine games. Now they face another playoff contender in the Phillies.
The Phillies haven’t been lucky themselves in the past few weeks against the Minnesota Twins, the Toronto Blue Jays, and the Washington Nationals. Philadelphia has won three of their last eight games.
While these two teams look for some rhythm at the plate at the beginning of this series, it is likely the two teams will start off being contained early at the plate.
The Phillies rank 10th in the MLB in runs accounted for in the first inning (0.54), but they haven’t been lucky as of in the past few series. The Giants are among the bottom of the least efficient teams in scoring early this season; ranking 24th in the league in runs in the first inning (0.46).
It will be tough for either the Phillies or the Giants to score, with both teams possessing stellar pitching this season. San Francisco ranks third in ERA (3.89), while Philadelphia ranks fourth in ERA (3.97).
The first televised game of Monday night is set as the Chicago White Sox (49-75) host the Seattle Mariners (69-55) at the beginning of a three-game series. The Mariners are expected to be heavy favorites going into this matchup on Monday night.
These two teams couldn’t be any more opposites at this point of the season. The Mariners are a team that has their strides in the batting game after a tough start to the 2023 MLB Season. They remain one of the top pitching teams in the MLB as they are loaded with depth and talent.
The White Sox, on the other hand, are a team that has been at the plate since the season. Their pitching remains a problem as they do not have reliable depth, closers, and replacements. Even Dylan Cease, a player with high-caliber talent, has struggled at the mound at times this season.
The interesting factor of the bet for under/over of one run in the first inning is the same at -115. No matter what decision bettors go with for runs in the first inning with a limit of one score, the payout will be the same.
The Mariners will be going with their ace pitcher and 2023 MLB All-Star selection in Luis Castillo (3.23 ERA in 150.1 innings pitched). He shouldn’t have to be a factor in limiting the White Sox from scoring in the first inning, but he definitely will. The Mariners are likely to take it easy to start the series against the White Sox.
The White Sox will be going with Touki Toussaint (4.44 ERA in 46.2 innings pitched) to start the series against the Mariners.
Going into one of the later games of Monday night, the Los Angeles Angels (61-64) host the Cincinnati Reds (64-61) at the start of a three-game series. The Reds have been one of the most surprising MLB teams this season, while the Angels have been one of the most disappointing teams, yet again, this season.
Both teams have seen some tough sets of performances at the plate and the mound through the second half of the season. The Reds entered the second half of the season with an overall record of 50-41, but have accounted for a 14-20 since the 2023 MLB All-Star Break.
It shouldn’t be surprising that the Angels are disappointing, but they are losing tough games with two of the best players in the league. The Angels came out of the 2023 MLB All-Star Break with an overall record of 45-46 and have since accounted for a 16-18 record.
Outside of their ace pitchers, the Reds and the Angels have been a disaster in the pitching game. What will make for an interesting game is the early start that these teams could create at the plate on Monday.
The Reds are fourth in the NL in runs accounted for this season (595). The Angels are sixth in the AL in runs accounted for this season (597). Both teams have some of the most exciting batters in the MLB and are bound to be better. The key for these teams in this game is the pitching game where the Angels will turn to Lucas Giolito (8.14 ERA in 21 innings pitched) while the Reds turn to Graham Ashcraft (4.89 ERA in 127 innings pitched).
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Michael Hanich is a sports journalist/analyst with a wide variety of experience in the newspaper and digital field. He has a love for all sports. The leagues that he covers are College Football, the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, College Basketball (men’s and women’s), the MLB, Lacrosse, Volleyball, and the WNBA.More info on Michael Hanich
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