Dylan Covey is set to make his first start of the season as the Philadelphia Phillies (25-27) match up against the Atlanta Braves (31-21) at Truist Park on Sunday with the home team looking to split the four-game series.
The Phillies lead the series 2-1 after winning 2-1 on Saturday. Zack Wheeler threw eight scoreless innings – striking out 12 – for the win, and Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth to earn his seventh save.
Kody Clemens was 2 for 4 with a double and one run in the win. Sean Murphy went 2 for 4 with a solo home run and a double for the Braves.
ON THE MOUND
Covey (0-0, 3.00 ERA) is slated for his first start of the season for Philadelphia. The righty allowed one run in five innings of relief in his last appearance, a 4-3 home defeat against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday. He gave up five hits while striking out six and walking one.
For Atlanta, RHP Spencer Strider (4-2, 2.97 ERA) gets the ball. It’s his first appearance of the season against the Phillies. Strider made four appearances against the Phillies in 2022, including three starts, striking out 34 and walking seven over 21.1 innings (4-0, 1.27).
In his last start on Tuesday, Strider took the loss at home against the Dodgers. He threw six innings and gave up four runs (2 ER) on five hits, striking out 11 and walking three in the 8-1 defeat. The right-hander leads the league in strikeouts (97).
AT THE PLATE
Over the last five games, Philadelphia has averaged 4.4 runs a game, a small gain compared to their season average of 4.3. Against righties like Strider this season, the Phils have a .756 OPS. J.T. Realmuto is the team’s strongest hitter against right-handers with a .859 OPS in 104 at-bats.
Atlanta is averaging only 3.6 runs per game in the last five, down from 5.1 for the season, with their slash line slipping across the board (.231/.281/.444).
The Braves have a .733 OPS against right-handers in 2023. With a .983 OPS over 131 at-bats, Matt Olson has been their best hitter against right-handers.
HOME AND AWAY
Philadelphia is 11-17 away from Citizens Bank Park in 2023, scoring 4.0 runs per game while allowing 5.7 runs. Atlanta has gone 14-14 in front of their home fans this season, averaging 4.5 runs per game while surrendering 4.8. In the last 10 games at Truist Park between the NL East rivals, Atlanta is 6-4 with an average scoreline of 5.2-3.1.
The Braves lead the NL East by four games over the Mets. The Phillies are fourth in the NL East, seven games behind the Braves.
SportsTips’ MLB Pick:
Atlanta Braves -1.5 (-130)
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of BetMGM.