Phillies vs Blue Jays Prediction Today | MLB Picks, Odds for Tuesday, August 15
Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images. Pictured: Zack Wheeler (Phillies)
Phillies vs. Blue Jays Odds
The Philadelphia Phillies will head north of the border to face the Toronto Blue Jays tonight.
The Phillies hold a 2-0 season-series lead over the Blue Jays, as they showed they can get the job done with both the bats and on the rubber.
However, tonight, they'll need a bit of both if they're going to make it three straight over Toronto.
Let's dive in and uncover the best way to bet on this series opener between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Phillies have quietly been rolling over the last two months, and their subtle hot streak has vaulted them to the top spot in the NL wild card race.
Along with bolstering their pitching staff, a big reason for their ascension has been the key contributions they've gotten in their lineup.
While many would point to Bryce Harper, Trea Turner and J.T. Realmuto as the Phillies' big three, it really has been Nick Castellanos, Alec Bohm and Bryson Stott who've sparked this offense.
Tonight we should see all six of them make an impact, as they get to face Yusei Kikuchi.
Kikuchi enters this outing with a 3.53 ERA, but that number is about to go up quickly. The veteran left-hander has been very fortunate this season, as he's surrendered a great deal of loud contact.
Kikuchi ranks in the 17th percentile in average exit velocity allowed and is in the 32nd percentile in hard-hit rate. That level of hard contact is likely to lead to more extra-base hits and is a big reason why his xERA is 4.26.
Expect the Phillies' lineup to get it going early tonight.
Toronto is still in the playoff picture and has all the makings of a contender, but it hasn't been the same without its spark plug at the top of the order.
Bo Bichette's injury is a significant loss to this lineup, as without him, the Jays only have two hitters with above-average hard-hit rates.
You don't want to face Zack Wheeler when getting offensive production from seven of your nine guys is a toss-up.
On top of that, the Blue Jays have struggled historically against Wheeler. They're hitting just .237 as a team with a 23.6% strikeout rate.
What's daunting about their history against Wheeler is that they've shown no signs of positive regression against him.
The current Blue Jays lineup has an average exit velocity of just 83.8 mph against Wheeler.
Add that to the Blue Jays' rank of 27th in hard-hit rate since Bichette went down with an injury, and it's hard to foresee much success against Wheeler tonight.
Phillies vs. Blue Jays
Betting Pick & Prediction
The markets for this matchup are interesting, as the Phillies are much larger favorites in the first five than they are in the full game. It's likely due to Toronto's pen being slightly better. However, are they worth 30 cents? That remains to be seen.
With that being said, the strongest angle of this matchup is to back the Phillies in the first five. Their lineup has been rolling, and they're facing Kikuchi, who's long overdue for a clunker.
Along with that, they have their ace on the mound in Wheeler, who's poised to shut down a Blue Jays lineup that's been lacking pop lately.