The Philadelphia Phillies made some huge splashes this offseason, and that talent infusion was expected to take them to the playoffs. It still could, but Philly has some work to do. The team currently sits in third place in the National League East and is a couple games back of a wild card berth. Philadelphia has enough talent to make the postseason but needs to turn it on as it heads into an important matchup against the San Francisco Giants on Thursday.
The Giants were red-hot for about a month, which surprisingly thrust them back into the wild card conversation, but have hit a recent lull and might be fading. San Francisco is at home in a game that it can’t afford to lose.
This MLB game between the Philadelphia Phillies and San Francisco Giants will be held at Oracle Park in San Francisco, California at 4:05 p.m. ET on Saturday, August 10th, 2019. The game will be nationally televised on FS1
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The Phillies have a record of 59-54 on the season, although a run-differential of negative-21 is not particularly inspiring at this point in the year. Philadelphia has gone 25-28 on the road this season and could really use a win here. The Phillies are chasing the Nationals and Brewers for a wild card spot but there are also a host of other teams in the mix.
The Giants have a mark of 56-59 this season. They surged back to .500 after a really slow start but have now lost four straight. San Francisco does not seem to have the requisite talent to remain in the playoff race, as that hot streak was a bit of a misnomer. The Giants have gone just 25-31 at home on the year.
Philadelphia is planning to send right-hander Vince Velasquez to the hill. He is 4-6 on the season with a 4.23 ERA. Velasquez has struck out 88 batters in 78.2 innings pitched and has always had a lofty strikeout rate. He has only given up four combined runs in his past three starts and will look for that momentum to continue against a subpar San Francisco lineup.
The Giants are projected to counter with right-hander Jeff Samardzjia. He is 8-9 on the year with a 3.70 ERA. Samardzija has been even better of late, giving up only two earned runs over his past 16 innings pitched. The Giants have the slight advantage on the mound so the betting odds should be pretty even in this one.
Player To Watch
Scooter Gennett -- The Giants made a surprising move this week by designating longtime starter Joe Paik for assignment. The move was made following the trade for Gennett, who is expected to be an upgrade at second base.
The Giants fans loved Panik and now Gennett will be expected to play well to prove the decision was the right one. Gennett has a career OPS of .779. He hasn’t played much yet this season but if he can get a key hit or two in this game it will help San Francisco’s chances while ingratiating himself in the clubhouse.
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Velazquez can be streaky, so it’s hard to know what the Phillies will get from him in this game. The Giants lineup isn’t scary and the stadium helps pitchers, so look for him to do well. This game could be a pitcher’s duel, and Philadelphia’s superior offensive firepower should come up with enough big blasts to lead the team to the much-needed road victory.
MLB Pick: Phillies 4, Giants 3
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