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Phillies vs. Blue Jays MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Toronto Will Take Advantage of Shorthanded Philadelphia (July 12)

Phillies vs. Blue Jays MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Toronto Will Take Advantage of Shorthanded Philadelphia (July 12) article feature image

Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images. Pictured: George Springer.

  • The Philadelphia Phillies travel up north to take on the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
  • The Phillies enter with a laundry list of absences due to COVID-19 vaccination statuses.
  • Doug Ziefel explains below why the Blue Jays will take full advantage.

Phillies vs. Blue Jays Odds

Phillies Odds+154
Blue Jays Odds-184
Over/Under9.5 (+100 / -122)
Time7:07 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Phillies and Blue Jays will begin this series trending in opposite directions.

Philadelphia has won six of its last 10 and would now be in the playoffs if the season ended today. As for Toronto, it has lost nine of its last 10 games, including four in a row.

Putting hot and cold streaks aside, COVID-19 is the biggest impact of this series, as the Phillies will be without at least four key players due to their vaccination status.

In the bunch missing the series are two of their projected starters. Bailey Falter was supposed to start this game but was demoted prior to the series.

The Phillies will put Realmuto, Bohm, Nola and Gibson on restricted list for Toronto. They forfeit pay and service time for two days. Other potential absences were mitigated through demotions to minors / injuries.

— Matt Gelb (@MattGelb) July 11, 2022

Andrew Bellatti will take his place and make his first career start. On the other side, the Blue Jays were hopeful Kevin Gausman would take the ball tonight, but it will be Jose Berrios instead.

So, with a hampered Phillies roster, how do we find value on the other side? Let’s dig in to find out.

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Has Berrios Finally Found it?

Berrios has had a dreadful first half of the season. He enters this start with a 5.44 ERA that’s expected to be at 6.00 when factoring in his poor underlying metrics.

Those metrics are concerning, as he’s in the bottom 5% of the league in every expected category, along with being in the bottom 10% in hard-hit and barrel rates.

However, Berrios has strung together two solid outings his last two times out. First, he threw five innings of two-run ball and did an excellent job of limiting damage against Tampa Bay. Then, he followed that up with six innings of one-run ball while striking out six against Oakland.

Now, he’ll face a Phillies lineup that features only two qualified hitters — Rhys Hoskins and Kyle Schwarber — with above-average exit velocities and hard-hit rates.

If Berrios can keep the train rolling, the Jays will be in a great spot.

Look for Jays to Mash Against Phillies’ Bullpen

Bellatti has been very solid for the Phillies in relief this season, entering with a 3.14 ERA and tremendous metrics.

However, we haven’t seen him go longer than one inning at any point this season. So, this appears to be a bullpen game for the Phillies, which is a questionable recipe for success.

Philadelphia’s bullpen has not been a strength this season, as it owns the 10th-highest xFIP in the majors at 4.11 and has the third-highest walk rate. If Bellatti pitches only one inning, the middle innings are where this game could be blown open.

Nick Nelson (4.19 ERA) or Cristopher Sanchez (3.80 ERA) would likely follow Bellati, as they’ve been the two inning-eaters out of the bullpen this year. Still, every other option is questionable after them.

The Blue Jays’ bats have scuffled of late, but there’s no questioning how dangerous this lineup can be. A trip home might help break the cold streak.

The Jays’ lineup features six players who have elite or near-elite average exit velocities and hard-hit rates. On top of that, they have hit much better at home this season. Toronto’s team batting average is .267 at home versus .248 on the road. Its OPS also jumps dramatically from .714 on the road to .795 at home.

This is a spot where the Jays’ opportunities will increase as the quality of arms facing them will decrease as the game progresses.

Phillies-Blue Jays Pick

Philly is in a tough spot in this series, and it gives the Blue Jays a tremendous edge.

The key to this game is getting another good outing from Berrios. If he can get through five quality innings, the Jays should be ecstatic. That would allow them to add on through the mid-to-late innings with the options in Philly’s pen dwindling.

That’s why I’m backing Toronto to cover the run line.

Pick: Blue Jays -1.5 (+100)

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