Marlins vs. Phillies MLB Odds & Pick: Bet Miami to Pull Ahead Quickly on Thursday (July 1)
Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images. Pictured: Miami Marlins starting pitcher Pablo López.
- The Miami Marlins will take on the Philadelphia Phillies in National League action on Thursday night.
- Mike Ianniello thinks the Marlins will take advantage early as the Phillies send starter Zach Eflin to the mound.
- Check out Ianniello's full betting breakdown complete with odds, a pick, and prediction below.
Editor’s note: Wednesday’s game between the Marlins and Phillies has been postponed due to weather. It will be made up as part of a doubleheader on July 16, with first pitch set for 4:05 p.m. ET.
Marlins vs. Phillies Odds
|Over/Under||7.5 (-115 / -105)|
|Time||6:05 p.m. ET|
The Miami Marlins are such a confusing team this season. They have a 34-45 record and sit in last place in the NL East. Yet, they have a +21 run differential, which is best in the division. Based on its run differential, Miami has an expected record of 42-37 so far.
Miami is just 6-17 in one-run games this season, including a 4-3 loss in the first game of this series against Philadelphia. The Marlins bounced back with an 11-6 win on Wednesday. The two will meet for the rubber match Thursday to decide the series.
Standout Pitching Carrying Marlins This Season
The Marlins have the fifth-best starting pitching ERA in the league. That’s largely due to their three young studs in Trevor Rogers (23 years old), Sandy Alcantara (25) and current starter Pablo López, who is also 25 years of age.
In 16 starts, López has a 2.87 ERA and is allowing just a .228 batting average and .286 wOBA to opponents. He mixes his 94 miles-per-hour fastball and 88 miles-per-hour changeup brilliantly, throwing each more than 30% of the time and generating a strikeout percentage north of 30% with both.
López uses that sinking fastball to generate soft contact, allowing just a 32.9 HardHit% and 86.3 average exit velocity, which ranks in the top 10% of the league. He sits 15th in the league with a 48.5% ground-ball rate. He will have a good matchup against Phillies team that has the seventh highest ground ball percentage in the league, and is 28th in HardHit percentage.
Unfortunately for the Marlins, their offense hasn’t really backed up their great pitching. They rank just 28th in runs; 20th in batting average; and, 29th in OPS.
Miami does have some talent, though, with guys like Starling Marte, Jazz Chisholm, Jesus Aguilar, Adam Duvall and Miguel Rojas. Duvall has been red hot, batting .325 with a 1.197 OPS and has homered in two consecutive games.
Phillies Hoping Hurler Eflin Can Deliver in Matchup
You can pretty much set your watch to Zach Eflin at this point. He is an average pitcher (nothing fancy) and has a solid 8.70 K/9 rate, but is never going to blow anybody away. He will give you six innings and allow two or three runs and six or seven hits.
In two starts against Miami this year, he went six innings in both games, allowing six hits and had six strikeouts in each contest. He allowed two earned runs in one start and three in the other. The strength of Eflin is his ability to consistently throw strikes. He has the lowest BB/9 rate in the league at just 1.10 and has walked just 11 batters all season. He throws a first pitch strike to 65.3% of all batters he faces.
The Phillies’ offense has also underperformed, but it has been much better at home. They average 4.68 runs per game at home versus 3.90 on the road.
Philadelphia’s lineup is full of stars. However, they’re getting down years from JT Realmuto, Bryce Harper, Rhys Hoskins, Andrew McCutchen and Alex Bohm. Only Jean Segura has really played up to expectations.
Hopefully Wednesday was a good sign for Harper, who had three hits — including two absolute bombs — in the loss to the Marlins. He has battled a wrist injury most of the season and the Phillies need him to break out.
There is a chance this game won’t actually be played, with rain expected in Philadelphia. Both of teams have already faced this opposing starting pitcher this season. López tossed seven innings, allowing four hits and two runs against the Phillies. Eflin has faced Miami twice this season , going 0-2 and allowing five total runs.
Miami’s lineup has had a lot of success against Eflin in its career. The Marlins have a .295 batting average and .336 wOBA against him, with Alfaro (.571), Marte (.500), Duvall (.389), Aguilar (.364), Berti (.364) and Rojas (.333) all batting over .300 against him in their careers.
For López, his strength of limiting hard contact and generating ground balls is a good recipe against the Phillies, who hit a lot of ground balls, and struggle to produce hard contact. His best pitch is his fastball, and Philadelphia is just 27th in the league against fastballs.
The Marlins love playing close, low scoring games and I think we see another close game . With that in mind, Miami has the advantage in starting pitching here so I am going to back the club for the first five innings. I prefer first five to the full game, because you still have the ability to push if it is tied after five.
Pick: Miami — First Five Innings ML (+100)