Phillies vs. Brewers, Sept. 8
The Phillies come into this game red hot, ripping off eight wins in their last 10 games and are closing in on the lead in the NL East division. The Brewers are still playing winning baseball going 6-4 over their last 10 and have a pretty solid hold on the division being 11 games up on the second place Reds who are struggling heavily right now. The Phillies need these wins and they certainly have been playing like a team that can sense the postseason is near. Can the Phillies keep their foot on the gas pedal and contend for the division, or leap into the last wildcard spot? Can the Brewers continue to stack wins over playoff quality teams and build some momentum heading into the postseason?
Piping Hot Phillies:
The Phillies seem to be peaking at the right time. Being slightly behind in the division and the wildcard, they need to continue winning games if they’re going to take one of those two final spots. With the Mets picking up steam and coming into the picture for the divisional race, the Phillies can’t afford to not finish strong. On the hill today for the Phillies is Kyle Gibson, and before his last start he had been having solid outings over the last month and a half. He did get crushed by the Marlins in his last start for eight runs in a Phillies loss though. From what we have seen from Gibson, he is good and bad in stretches. The question being, is this the beginning of another bad run? His walks have been up lately, and he’s never been a strikeout pitcher, so things tend to go bad quickly when he’s in a rut. The Brewers haven’t seen Gibson this season and the Phillies are 5-0 against the Brew Crew, so if this is a rut hopefully this is the right formula to get him out of it quickly.
The Brewers have relied heavily on their pitching that has stayed healthy for the most part, which has led them to a probable divisional championship this season. Their kryptonite has been the Phillies this season, so if the Phillies do make it to the playoffs, hopefully the Brewers can avoid them. Freddy Peralta takes the hill today and if there was a guy on their staff that could stop the skid against Philly, it would be him. In the midst of having a fantastic season, Peralta has guided the Brewers to a 16-7 record in his starts. In 11 of his last 15 starts Peralta has six or more strikeouts, combining this with a Phillies team that has not faced him, it could be a long day of swings and misses for the Phillies.
Phillies vs. Brewers: The Pick
There is no denying that the Brewers have a more talented pitching staff in this matchup. I don’t think Gibson can go from the extreme of getting clobbered by the Marlins to pitching a gem against a top team like the Brewers, which is what he will need to do to give the Phillies a fighting chance. Take the Brewers F5 -.5, Peralta has not pitched against the Phillies which should give him the upper hand especially basing it off of his strikeout numbers. The Brewers should come out fast and jump on Gibson early which is why Brewers First 5 is the play here.