A pair of NL teams get set to open up a three-game set as the Philadelphia Phillies host the Pittsburgh Pirates Monday. The Pirates enter this series having swept the Cincinnati Reds at home, most recently a 9-8 win Sunday afternoon. The Phillies return home after a 3-2 loss Sunday in Miami.
Let’s take a closer look at where the value is at in this matchup.
Pittsburgh Pirates: +122
Philadelphia Phillies: -140
Pittsburgh Pirates +1.5: -166
Philadelphia Phillies -1.5: +142
Over 9.5: -102
Under 9.5: -120
What to Watch For
Turning it Around:
Pittsburgh’s sweep of Cincinnati was their first sweet since handling San Diego all the way on June 21-23. They still have no chance in the NL Central, but seem to have finally figured out a way to get a few wins.
Musgrove to Start:
Pittsburgh will open the series with Joe Musgrove who gets his 27th start of the season. He took a loss his last time out, last Wednesday against the Washington Nationals when he gave up six runs in five innings (11-1 loss). He is 0-2 in his last three starts overall with a 5.09 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP in 17.2 innings.
In the Hunt:
On the other side, the Phillies are actually still in the hunt in the NL wild card race. The struggles in Miami didn’t help, but they have a chance to stay competitive for the second wild card spot with a strong three-game set here. They’ll start with Jason Vargas on the mount, getting his 23rd start of the season. This is his fourth career start vs Pittsburgh, having gone 2-0 with a 7.11 ERA, 1.579 WHIP in 19+ innings. He had a no-decision in his last start overall, throwing 5.2 innings and allowing two runs, six hits in a loss vs San Diego.
Head to Head:
Philadelphia won two-of-three on the road when these two teams met in July in Pittsburgh.
Joe Musgrove is projected to pitch a shade under five innings for Pittsburgh, giving up 6 hits and 3 runs. The Phillies average 0.85 HRs per sim off Musgrove.
Jason Vargas is projected to pitch five-to-six innings for Pittsburgh, giving up 6 hits and two-to-three runs. The Pirates average 0.61 HRs off Vargas.
Phillies to win.
Odds indicate Philadelphia has 58 percent chance to win on Monday. AccuScore sims have that probability up closer to 63 percent – suggesting some added side value on the favorites. Philadelphia winning is a four-star (out of four) hot trend pick. The average score in sims is 5.5 – 4.3, in favor of the Phillies.
Recent Accuscore Picks
-8/23: Reds – 108 (L), Reds +1.5 -225 (W)
-8/22: Cubs -165 (W)
-8/21: SD-CIN o8.5 (L)