Phillies vs. Mets Odds, Pick, Prediction: There’s Value on the Home Underdog (September 18)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images. Pictured: Carlos Carrasco.
- The Phillies are a very small favorite on Saturday night against the Mets.
- Aaron Nola will start for Philadelphia opposite veteran right-hander Carlos Carrasco.
- Tanner McGrath breaks down the matchup and delivers his betting pick below.
Phillies vs. Mets Odds
|Time||7:15 p.m. ET|
The Phillies enter Saturday night’s game against the Mets having won three straight, while the Braves have lost three straight. That means Philadelphia is now just two games behind Atlanta in the National League East race.
Considering the Phillies have a top MVP and Cy Young Award candidate, it seems ludicrous that they should miss the playoffs.
Either way, the Mets are going to try and accomplish that task. But New York has now lost four straight and have won just three of their last seven contests.
So can the Mets snap their losing streak and get back in the division race, or will the Phillies win their fifth straight? Let’s dive into this matchup and find where the value lies.
Harper Leads Phils’ Postseason Chase
Following a night in which Bryce Harper had another extra-base hit, we should recap what he’s accomplished recently.
Harper’s now working on a 13-game hit streak. He’s batting .400 with a 1.374 OPS over the last 30 days, and this hot streak has propelled him into a two-man MVP race. Harper has posted a 175 wRC+ this season and leads all of MLB in OPS at 1.055.
Bryce Harper is coming for that NL MVP award 💣
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) September 17, 2021
If the Phillies miraculously win the division, they’ll have Harper to thank.
Unfortunately, the rest of the team is slacking. J.T. Realmuto is banged up, Rhys Hoskins is out for the season and the Phillies just dropped three out of four games to the Rockies at home.
But it seems like Harper is on a mission from the heavens to force his team into the playoffs.
Hopefully, today’s starter Aaron Nola can start playing that way too. The former ace of the staff has a 5.51 ERA over his last six games, and the Phillies went 2-4 in those contests.
Nola’s had a rough year, but let’s focus on some positives:
- He’s walking just 1.93 batters per nine innings, which ranks in the top seven percent of qualified pitchers.
- He’s striking out over 11 batters per nine innings, and he’s struck out at least seven in 19 of his 29 starts this season.
- While his ERA is around 4.50, his xFIP is down near 3.00.
- Opponents are batting less than .200 on his curveball.
While he’s posted that high ERA over those six contests, his FIP is actually down at 3.50. So, there’s room for positive regression for Nola, and perhaps he can return to his former self for the playoff stretch.
That’d be huge for Philadelphia.
Woeful Mets Turn to Carrasco
The Mets are in big trouble.
They’re now 5 1/2 games back of the division lead with just 14 games left to go. Booking a postseason play is not impossible, but it’s highly improbable.
What’s really tough is that the Mets superstars are raking. Both Francisco Lindor and Javier Báez have OPS above 1.000 in September, and Báez even hit a homer last night.
That resulted in the Mets only run before the eighth inning. The offense is so inconsistent, it cannot get hot.
Carlos Carrasco gets the ball for New York and like the rest of the team, he’s been underwhelming in 2021.
It’s really been Carrasco’s first-inning woes that have cost him. He has a 15.00 ERA in nine first innings this season (that’s not a typo), and he’s allowed six home runs in the opening frame.
However, he’s allowed just six earned runs over his last three games, and the Mets won all those starts. Maybe New York will get another victory behind Carrasco today.
The world is on the Phillies tonight, as 71% of bettors tonight are on their moneyline.
I’m going to fade the public in this spot and take the home underdog. We’ve recorded sharp money coming in on the Mets, and I’d rather follow the smart money than back Nola again.
Nola still draws respect from bookmakers even though the Phillies are just 13-16 in his starts this season. I think that creates value on his opponent today, and I like the Mets at anything better than -110.
Pick: Mets ML (-105, play to -110)
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