Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Philadelphia Phillies: Predictions, Odds, Best Bets, Starting Lineups for NLCS Game 7 (10/24/23)
It’s all coming down to a winner-take-all game 7 between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Arizona Diamondbacks in the NLCS tonight (10/24/23) at 8:07pm ET. The Phillies are the betting favorites at -175 on the moneyline, while the over/under is set at 8.5 runs.
This article provides Diamondbacks vs. Phillies game 7 analysis, predictions and best bets including a recommendation to bet on the Phillies -1.5 against the spread.
Diamondbacks vs. Phillies Prediction NLCS Game 7
Starting pitchers: RHP Brandon Pfaadt (0-0, 2.13 ERA this postseason) vs. LHP Ranger Suárez (1-0, 0.64 ERA)
This is what it’s all about.
One game. One World Series berth. One impending heartbreak.
The two best words in sports: Game Seven.
Before game 6, we asserted that “this series is over” because a Phillies team with the best home field advantage in MLB history simply is not going to lose 2 games in a row at home with the National League pennant on the line. We can’t waver on that now, even after the Diamondbacks played their best game of the series while the Phillies played arguably their worst.
Arizona has all the momentum after winning 3 of the last 4 games including the first postseason victory by an NL team in Citizens Bank Park in the last 2 years (12 games). History is also on their side. Teams that have won game 6 are 34-26 all-time in game 7 (a .567 winning percentage).
The Phillies should have an edge on the mound tonight, at least early in the game. With all due respect to Zack Wheeler, Ranger Suárez has been arguably their best starting pitcher in the postseason. His 0.94 ERA in five career postseason starts is the lowest in MLB history (minimum 5 starts). Granted it’s a relatively low sample size (28-2/3 innings), but the numbers are the numbers. The Phillies certainly feel they have the right man on the mound tonight.
“It’s definitely contagious.”
Ranger Suarez will take the mound tomorrow and Nick Castellanos believes his calmness is just what the Phillies need for Game 7. pic.twitter.com/crPrVbzv1v
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) October 24, 2023
Diamondbacks rookie Brandon Pfaadt turned in the best starting pitching performance of the series in game 3, holding the Phillies scoreless and allowing just 2 hits while striking out 9 over 5-2/3 innings. He has pitched 10 consecutive scoreless innings over his last 2 postseason starts including game 3 of the NLDS against the Dodgers. Can the 25-year-old with a 5.72 ERA in the regular season do it again on the road in a game 7?
Both pitchers are likely to be on a short leash tonight, even if they’re pitching well, as managers Rob Thomson and Torey Lovullo will look to create every advantage they can with pitching matchups out of the bullpen. Both teams should have every bullpen arm available tonight, including their games 1 and 5 starters, Zack Wheeler and Zac Gallen.
The smart money here is probably on the Diamondbacks’ moneyline at +145. They have the momentum, the hotter bats and the better bullpen right now. But this is game 7, and anything can happen. We trust Suárez more than Pfaadt in this matchup, and we can’t ignore the potential impact of the Phillies’ home field advantage, even after last night’s loss.
The Phillies are still the better team and they’ve been here before. This may be their first game 7 in franchise history, but they are playoff-tested and guys like Bryce Harper and Kyle Schwarber are made for moments like this. We can’t bet against them tonight.
Diamondbacks vs. Phillies Game 7 Prediction: Phillies win 7-4, Phillies -1.5 (+120)
Diamondbacks vs. Phillies Odds
The Phillies are heavy favorites tonight with -175 moneyline odds, while the Diamondbacks are at +145 on the moneyline.
The Phillies are laying -1.5 runs on the spread at +120 odds, while the Diamondbacks are getting +1.5 runs at -145 odds.
The over/under in this game is set at 8.5 runs, with odds slightly favoring the under at -115 while the over is at -105.
Diamondbacks vs. Phillies Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide game 7 between the Diamondbacks and Phillies.
Pitchers vs. struggling hitters
We picked the Phillies in our Diamondbacks vs. Phillies game 7 prediction largely because we trust their lineup to come through in the most pressure-packed moments. Kyle Schwarber and Bryce Harper are the only Phillies with multiple home runs in this series and both have had multiple clutch hits in their postseason careers.
At the same time, this game has all the makings of an instant classic where an unlikely hero emerges. Both teams have hitters that have been leaders in their lineup all season but are struggling right now.
For Arizona, Corbin Carroll and Christian Walker are two of their best hitters who have been conspicuously quiet in this series. Carroll is 3-for-23 while Walker is 2-for-19 with 9 strikeouts.
The Phillies’ Nick Castellanos hit a home run in his first at-bat of the series – his 5th homer in 9 at bats going back to the NLDS – but he has gone 0-for-19 with 9 strikeouts since then.
If one of those talented-but-struggling sluggers finds his swing tonight, that could swing the matchup in their favor.
The bullpens have played a huge factor in this series, and that’s not going to change tonight.
The Diamondbacks have more arms they can trust in the bullpen. Ryan Thompson, setup man Kevin Ginkel and closer Paul Sewald have all been excellent in the late innings, combining for 10-1/3 innings and allowing just 1 run. Righties Miguel Castro, Luis Frías, and Slade Cecconi have also been excellent in the middle innings and could play a big role if Pfaadt can’t go deep into this game.
One concern for the Diamondbacks is whether they can trust lefties Joe Mantiply and rookie Andrew Saalfrank, who have both struggled in this series. If Lovullo uses them against the Phillies lefties – Harper, Schwarber, Bryson Stott and Brandon Marsh – those could be some of the most pivotal at-bats of the game.
The Phillies have four relievers that Thomson can trust. Righty Jeff Hoffman and lefty José Alvarado have combined for 8 innings without allowing a run. They will be Thomson’s highest-leverage arms tonight. Righty Seranthony Domínguez and lefty Matt Strahm also have not allowed runs, and Strahm is the one reliever in this series who has yet to allow a hit.
Thomson would like to avoid using rookie Orion Kerkering and former closer Craig Kimbrel, who have both struggled mightily in this series. That leaves the Phillies’ bullpen a bit thin, which puts more pressure on Suárez to go deeper into this game, but Thomson has pulled him after 69 pitches and less than 6 innings in each of his last 2 starts.
The wild card in the bullpen battle is whether and when the managers use Gallen and Wheeler in relief appearances, which could be a decision that swings this matchup.
This game could come down to the final outs, and the team whose bullpen steps up the most could be the one headed to the World Series.
Diamondbacks vs. Phillies Starting Lineups (Projected)
Diamondbacks Starting Lineup
2B Ketel Marte (S)
RF Corbin Carroll (L)
C Gabriel Moreno (R)
1B Christian Walker (R)
DH Tommy Pham (R)
LF Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (R)
CF Alek Thomas (L)
3B Evan Longoria (R)
SS Geraldo Perdomo (S)
Phillies Starting Lineup
DH Kyle Schwarber (L)
SS Trea Turner (R)
1B Bryce Harper (L)
3B Alec Bohm (R)
2B Bryson Stott (L)
C J.T. Realmuto (R)
RF Nick Castellanos (R)
LF Brandon Marsh (L)
CF Johan Rojas (R)