Philadelphia Phillies vs. Seattle Mariners MLB Pick, Odds, Prediction 8/20/14
Seattle Mariners (68-57) at Philadelphia Phillies (55-71)
MLB Baseball: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 1:05 pm (Citizens Bank Park)
James Paxton (L) (3-0) (2.198) vs. Cole Hamels (L) (6-6) (2.438)
The Line: Philadelphia Phillies -125 / Seattle Mariners +115 --- Over/Under: 7 See the Latest Odds
TV: ROOT, CSPh
The Philadelphia Phillies and Seattle Mariners play the rubber match of their three game series at Citizen’s Bank Park.
The Seattle Mariners might be considered one of the bigger surprises in the Wild Card race this season, but with a team that spent $240 million to lock down Robinson Cano in the offseason it’s hard to believe the organization and fans weren’t expecting exactly what they’re getting. While the Mariners haven’t been particularly strong at the plate ranking just 20th in the league in runs scored, the pitching staff has been a well-oiled machine ranking 1st in the league in team ERA. In last night’s 5-2 win, pitching was front and center once again as Hisashi Iwakuma delivered a dominant shutout performance allowing just four hits over eight innings of work while striking out 11 Phillies. Robinson Cano and Logan Morrison had RBI’s in the first inning to back Iwakuma early, Kyle Seager hit his 19th home run of the season on a solo shot, and Mike Zunino had two RBI’s as the Mariners scored five runs on seven hits in the win.
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James Paxton makes his sixth start of the season for the Mariners in Wednesday afternoon’s game. The 25 year old lefty Paxton has been highly successful at the big league level since debuting in September of 2013. Across five starts in 2014, Paxton has a WHIP of 0.94 and ERA of 2.20 to complement a 3-0 record. Paxton made two starts in April of this year and had a lengthy stay on the DL up until August; in three starts since returning to action Paxton has an ERA of 2.16 over 16.2 innings while facing competent offensive teams in the Tigers, White Sox and Orioles.
The Philadelphia Phillies lost their seventh consecutive game started by A.J. Burnett on Tuesday night as the scuffling veteran Burnett allowed five runs on six hits over 7.2 innings in a game where he was simply out-dueled by a younger and better pitcher. Burnett continues to harness the strikeout pitch at the age of 37 as he racked up eight K’s, but the Philly bats were non-existent in backing the effort scoring twice in the ninth inning while managing six total hits on the night. With the Phillies primary power source in Ryan Howard having the biggest slump year of his career batting just .221, it’s only natural the Phillies rank in the bottom ten in the league in batting average, on base percentage, slugging, and runs scored.
Cole Hamels will make the start for the home team on Wednesday in search of his first win during the month of August. Hamels has been rock solid for the Phillies this season entering this game with a WHIP of 1.13 and ERA of 2.44, but the team backing him hasn’t been supportive enough leading to a paltry 6-6 record. The veteran lefty Hamels has actually been better on the road than at home, with a 3.28 ERA across ten starts in friendly confines. Alternatively, Hamels has also been at his best in day games with a 1.66 ERA across six starts this season. While most of the Mariners haven’t seen much of Cole Hamels, Chris Denorfia is batting .235 and Logan Morrison is batting .316 lifetime against Hamels.
While Hamels has the larger sample size to prove his worth on the mound in the pitching matchup, the Mariners are the better team, and with the Phillies owning a poor home record of 27-37 I will take the plus odds on the visitor.