The Washington Nationals (93-60) and Philadelphia Phillies (77-76) will open up a three-game National League East series on Tuesday night at Citizens Bank Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 ET
Washington Nationals at Philadelphia Phillies
Washington dropped its magic number to five to capture the NL East division after Monday’s 12-2 blowout win at home over the Milwaukee Brewers, as the club gets set to face one of its biggest rivals. “We have to worry about tomorrow’s game,” commented Ian Desmond. “The rest of it will take care of itself.” The Nationals have lost three straight in this series and six of the last seven meetings. Washington has split its 10 games as a road underdog of +125 to +150, which is important to note when making your pro baseball predictions.
Nationals starting pitcher Ross Detwiler (10-6, 3.10 ERA) has led the club to four wins in his last five outings, including a 4-1 home victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers last time out, giving up a run and three hits over six frames. The left-hander is 2-4 with a 3.78 ERA in 14 road outings (11 starts), with opposing hitters batting .230 against him. In seven career games versus the Phillies, Detwiler has compiled a 2-3 record and 3.57 ERA, including a 3-0 home win on Aug. 2.
Philadelphia will play the first of six remaining games against Washington, as it tries to snap a two-game losing streak. The Phillies managed to score just three combined runs in the final two games of a home series against the Atlanta Braves over the weekend. “Obviously, we’re running out of games,” commented Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee about the team’s chances of reaching the postseason. Coming into this series opener, the club is 5.5 games back of the St. Louis Cardinals for the second NL Wild Card spot. Philadelphia is 51-27 in September the last two-plus years, while the “under” is 11-8 in that situation in 2012.
Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels (15-6, 3.05 ERA) has led the squad to three consecutive victories, including a no-decision effort in a 3-2 road win over the New York Mets. The left-hander is 6-3 with a 2.85 ERA in 13 home outings, issuing 24 walks and striking out 91 batters in 91.2 frames. In 23 career starts versus the Nationals, Hamels has tallied a 12-5 record and 2.48 ERA, including a 2-1 mark and 1.17 ERA in three efforts this year.
Sports bettors will likely back the Phillies due to their 10-1 record against left-handers at home, while the Nationals are 0-4 in Detwiler’s last four starts as a road underdog of +110 to +150.