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Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook.
|Over 8 (-110)|
|Blue Jays||+1.5 (-180)|
|Under 8 (-110)|
Blue Jays Moneyline (-105)
On Tuesday night, the Philadelphia Phillies and Toronto Blue Jays will open up a two-game interleague series in Toronto. Both teams are trailing in their respective division races, but enter this series in position to grab Wild Card spots in their respective leagues. But only one team can win this game, which will mean the other team losing ground when Tuesday’s games are wrapped up.
The Philadelphia Phillies enter Tuesday night’s action at 65-54 on the season and in first place in the NL Wild Card standings. If any team knows that there is nothing wrong with claiming a Wild Card spot, it is the Phillies, who made the World Series from a Wild Card position just a season ago. Here, the Phillies will look to their top arm to try and get another win that will help their chances in the Wild Card race.
So far this season, Zack Wheeler has been excellent for the Phillies, posting a 9-5 record and a 3.74 ERA. He is still in the top-10 in the NL Cy Young award race, even if there are several candidates that are being given a better chance than him to ultimately win the award. But Wheeler will be tested in this game against a Blue Jays team that has plenty of power throughout their batting order.
An area of concern for the Phillies entering this matchup is how they have performed on the road throughout the season. While the Phillies are 11 games above .500 so far this season, they are just one game above .500 away from Citizens Bank Park. A loss here would drop them to the .500 mark for the year on the road, but more importantly, would give the teams behind them in the Wild Card standings a chance to make up a game on them.
The Toronto Blue Jays come into Tuesday’s MLB action at 66-54 on the year, just one win better than the Philadelphia Phillies for the season. In the American League, that record is good for just the third spot in the AL Wild Card standings, with the Jays holding a slim lead over the Seattle Mariners for the final AL playoff spot. While the Blue Jays have lost their two games against the Phillies so far this season, those games were both in Philadelphia, as Toronto will look to even things up North of the border.
Yusei Kikuchi is on the mound for the Blue Jays in this game, who has been one of the more underrated pitchers in all of baseball this season. Kikuchi is 9-4 with a 3.53 ERA in his 122.1 innings of work on the season. Despite having numbers similar to those of Wheeler this year, though, Kikuchi has not received the same kind of love when it comes to the Cy Young races in 2023.
For Kikuchi, the key to this game will be avoiding damage via the home run ball, which he has struggled with at times this season. Kikuchi has allowed 22 home runs so far this year, which is certainly more than any pitcher should allow in a season. While the Phillies rank 16th in the league in home runs this season, they do have hitters at the top of their lineup capable of hitting them, and the Jays starter must be careful not to get lit up early on.
What: Philadelphia Phillies vs Toronto Blue Jays
When: Tuesday, August 15, 2023 at 7:07 PM ET
Where: Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario
How to Watch: MLB.tv
Jay Sanin is a sports bettor and writer from New York. He has been handicapping since the moment he was old enough to gamble legally, with his specialties being niche sports like the WNBA and XFL. He’s been told he has a voice for radio. He also has a face for radio.More info on Jay Sanin
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