NLDS Game 2: Wheeler, Phillies look to take commanding series lead against Wright, Braves
The Philadelphia Phillies are just two wins away from going to the NLCS. Zack Wheeler will take the mound at 4:35PM looking to cut that number in half and give the Fightins a 2-0 lead before heading back to Philly for Game 3 Friday night.
Yesterday was incredible. Ranger Suarez, the Phillies third man in the rotation, walked away with a win against Braves’ ace Max Fried to give our Phillies a pivotal game one win in the best-of-five series. Nick Castellanos had arguably his best game in Phillies uniform, with 3 RBI at the plate and an amazing catch in the 9th to help Zach Eflin secure the win.
Now, all focus will shift to 4:35PM today, when Zack Wheeler takes the mound against Kyle Wright.
Wheeler has thrown 14.1 straight scoreless innings 6.2 of them happening last Friday, when he held the St. Louis Cardinals to just two hits and a walk while striking out four in the Phillies Game 1 win during the Wild Card series.
Side Note: That’s The Liberty Line crew in the video above at the Phans of Philly – Phillies Watch Party in Arizona when Jean Segura gave us the lead. EPIC.
Back to todays game…
In three starts against the Braves this season, Wheeler is 2-0 with an ERA of 2.70. He has 25 strikeouts and BOTH WINS came on the road.
Zack Wheeler vs the Braves 2022
5/23/2022: Wheeler threw 6.2 innings, allowed eight hits and two earned runs while striking out 10 Braves batters. The Phillies jumped all over the Braves, scoring seven runs in the first four innings before the Braves added three runs, two of which came off Wheeler and one courtesy of Jeurys Familia.
6/28/2022: Wheeler got hit early in the game allowing two solo home runs to Travis d’Arnaud and Matt Olson in the first inning. He tossed 6.1 innings, allowing five hits and three earned runs while striking out eight. Phillies lost 5-3 and coughed up a run in the eighth and ninth inning after Wheeler departed.
8/3/2022: Zack Wheeler threw seven innings, allowing just one earned run on five hits while striking out seven. Nick Castellanos hit a two-run home run in the eighth inning to give the Phillies a 3-1 victory in Atlanta.
Kyle Wright pitched fairly well against the Phillies this season going 2-1 with a 2.84 ERA and 15 strikeouts.
5/26/2022: 6.2 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 1 HR (Realmuto), 5 SO, 2 BB – LOSS
6/29/2022: 7.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 HR (Hoskins), 4 SO, 3 BB – WIN
9/24/2022: 5.1 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 1 HR (Harper), 6 SO, 2 BB – WIN
Phillies vs Kyle Wright (2022)
- Kyle Schwarber: 0-8
- Rhys Hoskins: 3-9, HR, RBI
- Bryce Harper: 1-5, HR, 2 RBI
- JT Realmuto: 1-6, HR, RBI
- Nick Castellanos: 0-6
- Alec Bohm: 1-8
- Jean Segura: 0-4
- Brandon Marsh: 0-4
- Bryson Stott: 0-4
Yes. It looks scary, but honestly, I like the production in the middle of the order.
Oh, also, good news! This is the MLB Postseason and whatever happened in the regular season really doesn’t matter anymore. The playoffs are a completely different type of ball game.
The Phillies are playing fundamental baseball and with Zack Wheeler on the mound, all it takes is a few mistakes from the Braves pitching staff and the Phillies can steal another win on the road.
I’m sure of it.
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Yesterday, we cashed in what just felt like a trap game for the Atlanta Braves in Game 1.
Today, I think it would be stupid to suggest that the Phillies can simply ride momentum and a little magic to another win. The top of the lineup in Kyle Schwarber and Rhys Hoskins (assuming it says that way) need to produce and Wheeler MUST pitch deep into this game to avoid another long, stressful day for the bullpen like we witnessed in Game 1.
For the life of me, I can’t stop thinking about the game I listed above when Zack Wheeler threw seven innings, allowing just one earned run on five hits while striking out seven. Nick Castellanos hit a two-run home run in the eighth inning to give the Phillies a 3-1 victory in Atlanta.
That is exactly what I’m expecting tomorrow against Kyle Wright.
Rhys Hoskins hit the ball HARD yesterday. None of them fell. I think we break that streak tonight and I think Bryce Harper stays hot with Realmuto finding some pop tonight as well. Let’s get crazy.
Bryce Harper, Rhys Hoskins, JT Realmuto – All Hit Home Runs
The Phillies now have home field advantage. They weren’t supposed to win yesterday, but they did thanks to some early, timely hitting.
Player Props to Consider
- Zack Wheeler 6+ Strikeouts (+108)
- Nick Castellanos Hit (-200)
- Alec Bohm Hit (-195)
- Bryson Stott Hit (-145)
- Travis d’Arnaud Hit (-190)
- Matt Olson Hit (-170)
Pick: Phillies +116 | Under 7.5 Runs
If the Phillies can jump on Wright early and often, then Wheeler will be able to settle in and pitch deep into this ballgame and it will be an absolute PARTY in South Philadelphia on Friday.