2020-08-28 19:05:00 EDT
The Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies meet in an NL East division matchup in MLB action from Citizens’ Bank Park on Friday.
The Atlanta Braves come into this game fresh off of a double-header sweep over the New York Yankees on Wednesday, posting a 5-1 win in game one and followed that up with a 2-1 win in the second half of the double dip. Game one saw Dansby Swanson belt a two-run home run while Ronald Acuna Jr. and Marcell Ozuna each had solo homers and Nick Markakis went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI to cap off the offense while game two saw Freddie Freeman account for all of Atlanta’s scoring as he hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the 6th to take the lead for good for Atlanta. Ian Anderson got the win on the mound in game one in his major league debut, tossing six innings and allowing just one run while striking out six and holding New York hitless into the sixth inning while Max Fried ended up with the win in game two to improve to 5-0 on the year after allowing one run while striking out five over five innings of work. Robbie Erlin will start here and is 0-0 with a 5.14 ERA and 17 strikeouts this season. In his career, Erlin is 1-1 with a 4.32 ERA and 28 strikeouts against Philadelphia.
The Philadelphia Phillies come into this one rested after having their game against Washington postponed due to one of multiple protests across the country. J.Y. Realmuto leads the Phillies with totals of 9 home runs and 25 RBIs in a team-high 91 at-bats this season, but also bolsters a team-high 30 strikeouts as well this season. Bryce Harper has a .317 batting average as well as a .457 on base percentage while Didi Gregorius and the aforementioned Realmuto are tied for the team-high with 27 hits so far this season. Zack Wheeler is expected to get the start here and is currently sporting a 3-0 record with a 2.76 ERA and 20 strikeouts this season. In his career, Wheeler is 6-5 with a 3.93 ERA and 83 strikeouts against Atlanta.
Atlanta is 4-1 in their last 5 games overall and 42-20 in their last 62 games against a team with a winning record while the over is 3-0-1 in their last 4 games as a road underdog. Philadelphia is 2-5 in their lat 7 games overall and 1-5 in their last 6 games against a team with a winning record while the over is 4-1-1 in their last 6 series opening matchups. The over is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings between these two teams.
Erlin’s been serviceable for the Braves in a reliever role and he’s made spot starts here and there, but he did allow three homers in a relief appearance against Philadelphia earlier this season and keeping the ball in the park’s been an issue for Erlin against the Phils this season. Wheeler threw seven innings and gave up just two runs against the Braves already this season and while the Braves are coming off of that big double-header sweep against the Yankees, I just think the pitching matchup favors Philly here so I’ll side with the Phillies at home in this one.