San Diego Padres vs Philadelphia Phillies (10/23/22) Starting Lineup, Betting Odds, Prediction

We’ve reached the first elimination game of the NLCS, and if the Padres aren’t at their best, it’ll be the only one. After four mostly high-scoring, back and forth games to get the series started, the Phillies, the first-ever National League 6-seed under the new playoff format, are on the brink of advancing to the World Series. Game 5 is their one chance to do so in their home ballpark before the series would potentially head back to San Diego for a big finish. Let’s take a look at the betting odds and make some predictions for this absolutely pivotal Sunday afternoon matchup.

Padres Vs. Phillies Betting Odds

Vegas likes the Phillies to close out this series in 5, as they are are favored by a run and a half in their home ballpark. The run total, on the other hand, is set at an intriguing number of 7; both teams have shown an ability to score runs, but both starters were pretty sharp in their game 1 faceoff. Philly won that matchup 2-0 due in large part to 7 one-hit innings out of Wheeler, so it’s understandable that sportsbooks could be simultaneously ready for a lot of runs, and also bracing for another pitcher’s duel.

Padres Vs. Phillies Picks & Prediction

The Phillies have been able to generate big innings at the plate all postseason. It started right off the bat in Game 1 of the Wild Card round with their remarkable 6-run rally in the ninth inning, and it’s continued all the way through game 4, where they answered a 4-run top of the first from the Padres with 3 in the bottom of the frame, and then a 4-spot of their own in the fifth inning. They have a number of players who can hit for power and get all of those runs in a hurry- from this year’s NL home run champ Kyle Schwarber, to two-time MVP and scorching hot postseason star Bryce Harper, to homegrown talent Rhys Hoskins, these Phillies are no stranger to the long ball. Darvish is a great pitcher, but gopher balls are certainly a weakness of his- he allowed 22 this year, 28 last year even while putting together an All-Star campaign, and in 2019, he led the NL by allowing 33. When he misses, he does so inside the strike zone, and that could cause trouble against Philly’s power bats, leading to one of their signature big innings; I like the value at -130 for them to put up the highest-scoring inning of the game.

In regards to the actual result of the game, I’m going to follow Vegas’s lead and pick the Phillies. I’d recommend betting their moneyline at -135, rather than opening yourself up to the risk of a very possible one-run win for the Phils if it’s another pitcher’s duel. Wheeler dominated last time out in this series, and he also didn’t allow a run across seven innings in his one regular-season start against San Diego; it’s a small sample size, but it certainly shouldn’t make Padres fans feel very good. That elite core of bats at the heart of Philly’s lineup are all getting extremely hot at the same time, and that’s very hard to beat when it comes to postseason baseball.

Padres Starting Lineup

LF J. Profar S
RF J. Soto L
3B M. Machado R
DH J. Bell S
2B J. Cronenworth L
1B W. Myers R
SS H. Kim R
CF T. Grisham L
C A. Nola R

Padres Vs. Zack Wheeler

Interestingly enough, the right-handed Wheeler has a reverse split this year, performing better against lefties, but for his career, the opposite has been true. His toughest lefty matchup is going to be against Juan Soto, who is just generally an excellent ballplayer in most regards, but is particularly dominant against right handed pitching. Jake Cronenworth also hits from the left side and has had a really nice postseason following the Mets series as he seems to continually put up big, timely hits, but he doesn’t have much of a platoon split at all. Manny Machado has been excellent this regular and postseason, and has reverse splits this season, so he’ll provide another dangerous at-bat for Wheeler in this game. As I alluded to earlier, Wheeler has been absolutely fantastic against San Diego this year as well, allowing just 5 hits and not a single run across 14 innings between one regular season start, and of course game 1 of this series.

Phillies Starting Lineup

LF K. Schwarber L
1B R. Hoskins R
C J. Realmuto R
DH B. Harper L
RF N. Castellanos R
3B A. Bohm R
CF B. Marsh L
2B J. Segura R
SS B. Stott L

Phillies Vs. Yu Darvish

Darvish was very effective in the series opener, as he was saddled with the loss despite tossing seven innings of two-run ball. However, there’s still reason to believe that he could get into trouble against this Phillies lineup. They’re a pretty right-handed bunch, which is nice for Darvish; although like Wheeler, while it goes against his career trend, he has reverse splits this season. The issue is that the two most dangerous hitters in the lineup- Harper and Schwarber- are two of the best lefty power bats in the National League, and they both feast on right-handed pitching. I wouldn’t be shocked to see a very modern, true-outcomes type of game, that involves stretches of shutdown pitching from Darvish interspersed with the towering home runs that have become a hallmark of this Phillies playoff run.

From starting my own blog in Middle School, to working on a friend’s in college, and finally joining the Lineups team this year, I’ve been writing about sports for over a decade and betting on them as long as I’ve been legally able. I graduated from the University of Michigan last year, where I took sports journalism classes alongside my business major. Having played and watched sports for almost my whole life, I aim to provide insight and entertainment, as well as profitable picks, in my writing about professional and collegiate leagues.

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