MLB Predictions 2012: Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves

The Philadelphia Phillies (11-12) and Atlanta Braves (14-9) will open up a three-game National League East series on Tuesday night at Turner Field, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:10 ET

Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves    

The Philadelphia Phillies are 9-7 against right-handed starters this year

Philadelphia finished April a game under .500 after capturing a 6-4 home win over the Chicago Cubs to split the four-game series, as the club embarks on a six-game road trip against divisional foes.  “Other than last year, we’re probably just where we always are,” commented Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins.  The Phillies will definitely look to jump on the Braves early, coming in with an 8-2 record when scoring first, while going 3-10 when their opponent accomplishes that feat.  Philadelphia is 9-7 versus right-handed starters and the “over” is 10-6 in those contests.

Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels (3-1, 2.73 ERA) has led the club to three wins in his four starts, including a 7-2 road victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks last time out, giving up two runs and four hits over eight frames.  The left-hander is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA in two road starts this year, as opposing hitters are hitting just .196 and haven’t hit a home run against him in 14 innings.  Hamels has registered an impressive 17-4 record and 3.68 ERA in 30 May starts, including a 5-1 mark and 3.69 ERA in seven outings versus the Braves during that month.

Atlanta split four games with the Pittsburgh Pirates to open up its current seven-game homestand, including a 9-3 setback on Monday night.  Total players will notice that the “under” is 4-1-1 in the club’s last six games.  The Braves are hoping that outfielder Jason Heyward can return to the lineup after missing last night’s game with a right oblique injury, but he’s only 3 for 13 in his career when facing Hamels.  Atlanta is 4-0 at home with a money line of -100 to -125 this season, with the “over” being 3-1 in those contests.

Braves starting pitcher Brandon Beachy (2-1, 1.05 ERA) has led the squad to three consecutive victories, including a no-decision effort in a 4-2 road win over the Los Angeles Dodgers last time out.  He allowed two runs and seven hits over 6.1 frames in that effort.  Beachy tossed seven shutout innings in his only home start of the year, picking up a 7-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on April 15.  In six career starts versus the Phillies, the right-hander is 0-3 with a 3.94 ERA, as he’s served up four home runs in 29.2 innings.

Bettors will likely back the Phillies due to their 5-2 record in Hamels’ last seven starts as a road underdog, while the Braves are 2-9 in their last 11 divisional games.

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