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Cincinnati Reds vs. Philadelphia Phillies - 7/26/18 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Philadelphia Phillies (57-44) at Cincinnati Reds (45-57)

MLB Baseball: Thursday, July 26, 2018 at 7:10 pm (Great American Ball Park)

Ranger Suarez (0-0) (0.00) vs. Tyler Mahle (7-8) (4.32)

The Line: Cincinnati Reds -124 / Philadelphia Phillies +104 --- Over/Under: 9.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: FS-Ohio

The Philadelphia Phillies and the Cincinnati Reds square off in game one of a four game set from Great American Ballpark in MLB action on Thursday. 

The Philadelphia Phillies will look to keep their momentum going after a second straight series victory following a 7-3 win over the Dodgers in their rubber match on Wednesday. Carlos Santana led the Phils by going 2 for 3 with a triple and three RBIs, while Rhys Hoskins and Scott Kingery each belted a solo home run. Andrew Knapp added a double and an RBI while Nick Williams added an RBI of his own to round out the scoring for the Phillies in the victory. Jesmuel Valentin also chipped in a base hit in the winning effort. Jake Arrieta picked up the win to improve to 8-6 this season after giving up all three runs, two earned, on five hits while striking out six over six innings of work. Seranthony Dominguez closed out the 9th for his 10th save of the campaign. Ranger Suarez will be making his major league debut in this game and was 5-3 with a 2.38 ERA and 66 strikeouts in AA and AAA this season, including 1-0 with a 0.57 ERA and 12 strikeouts across three starts for AAA Lehigh Valley.

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Cincinnati Reds vs. Philadelphia Phillies - 7/26/18 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Reds will be looking to build off of a series victory of their own, taking the rubber match against St. Louis by a final score of 7-3 on Wednesday. Eugenio Suarez, Tucker Barnhart and Adam Duvall each went yard with Duvall going 2 for 3 with a double. Phillip Ervin added a pair of RBIs with a double of his own to cap off Cincy’s scoring in the win, while Scooter Gennett went 3 for 4 with a double. Billy Hamilton chipped in a base knock of his own to round out the Cincinnati offense in the win. Sal Romano picked up the win to improve to 6-8 this season after giving up two runs on seven hits while striking out five over six innings of work. Tyler Mahle will start game one and is 7-8 with a 4.32 ERA and 101 strikeouts this season. This will be Mahle’s first career start against Philadelphia.

Philadelphia is 6-2 in their last 8 games against the NL Central and 6-2 in their last 8 series opening matchups while the over is 6-1 in their last 7 games overall. Cincinnati is 2-5 in their last 7 games overall and 7-3 in Mahle’s last 10 starts while the over is 12-3-1 in their last 16 games following a win. Philadelphia is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings between these two teams.

I’ll be the first to admit I was wrong about the Reds and Romano on Wednesday, and while I’m not usually a fan of backing a pitcher in their major league debut, I have to go against Cincinnati here as well. I was a big supporter of Mahle a few weeks ago, but his last two starts have blown up square in my face as Cincinnati has been outscored 31-5 in those two starts, as Mahle has given up 13 runs, 11 earned, in just eight innings of work. When that’s been your line of work over the last two weeks, you shouldn’t be a favorite at all in my opinion. It doesn’t hurt that we are getting plus money with the team fighting for their division lead, and Suarez had shown some solid stuff in AAA, so I’ll take a shot with Philadelphia to draw first blood on Thursday. 

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