The Philadelphia Phillies (83-69) are on the road to face the Chicago Cubs (67-86) at Wrigley Field on Tuesday for the first of a three-game series. The Phillies are kicking off a 10-game road trip after closing out a six-game homestand (3-3). They split their last series against the Braves, dropping the finale 8-7 on Sunday at Citizens Bank Park. Kyle Schwarber was 2 for 3 with two home runs and three runs, extending his on-base streak to 15 games. Brandon Marsh went 3 for 5 with a double and one run. The Cubs are playing the first of six games at home after finishing up a productive seven-game road trip (5-2). They won three of four against the Pirates in their last series, taking the finale 8-3 on Sunday at PNC Park. Esteban Quiroz went 2 for 3 with two runs and one RBI.
The Cubs have won all three games this season between the teams, including a 4-3 victory in their most recent meeting on July 24 at Citizens Bank Park. Starter Drew Smyly went six innings, giving up two runs (1 ER) on four hits, to get the win, and David Robertson picked up his 14th save with a scoreless ninth.
ON THE MOUND
Zack Wheeler (11-7, 2.98 ERA) is slated to get the start for Philadelphia. The RHP threw four scoreless innings in his last start, a 4-3 road win over the Blue Jays on Wednesday. He scattered two hits while striking out three in the no-decision. Wheeler has made one previous start against the Cubs this season, a 6-2 home loss on July 23. He surrendered one run on three hits over seven innings, striking out six. Righty Marcus Stroman (4-7, 3.80 ERA) will take the mound for Chicago. He has made one prior start against the Phillies this season, giving up one runs over six innings in a 6-2 road win on July 23. He gave up five hits and walked two, while striking out five in the no-decision. In his last start on Wednesday, Stroman took a no-decision on the road against the Marlins. He threw six innings and gave up three runs on five hits, striking out seven and walking one in the 4-3 win.
AT THE PLATE
The Philadelphia offense is averaging 4.7 runs per game for the season, with a slash line of .254/.317/.425. J.T. Realmuto leads the team in OPS at .827. The catcher is slashing .277/.345/.482 with 21 home runs, 82 RBIs, and 73 runs over 131 games. Against righties like Stroman this season, the Phils have a .731 OPS. Schwarber is the team’s most productive hitter against right-handers with a .865 OPS in 357 at-bats. Chicago is slashing .240/.311/.386 for the season and averaging 4.0 runs per game. Ian Happ leads the team with a .787 OPS. The center fielder has 17 home runs, 70 RBIs, and 69 runs scored with a slash line of .270/.340/.447. The Cubs have a .696 OPS against right-handers in 2022. With a .782 OPS over 422 at-bats, Happ also has been their best hitter against right-handers.
HOME AND AWAY
Philadelphia is on a four-game losing streak in road games, bringing their record to 36-35 in 2022. The Phils have scored 4.5 runs per game away from home, while allowing 4.4 runs. Chicago has gone 31-44 at their home park this season, averaging 4.0 runs per game while surrendering 4.5. The teams have split their last 10 meetings at Wrigley Field, though Philadelphia has the scoring advantage with an average final margin of 6.7-5.4.
The Phillies are third in the NL East, 13 games behind the division-leading Mets. They currently occupy one of the Wild Card spots, sitting third with a magic number of zero. The Cubs are third in the NL Central, 21 games behind the Cardinals.
SportsTips’ MLB Pick:
Philadelphia Phillies (-160)
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of BetMGM.