The Phillies lead the series 2-0 after winning 8-4 on Wednesday. Taijuan Walker went seven innings, giving up four runs on five hits and striking out eight, to get the win.
Bryson Stott was 4 for 5 with a double, two runs, and one RBI in the win. J.T. Realmuto went 3 for 4 with a double, two runs, and one RBI. Brandon Lowe went 2 for 3 with two doubles and two RBIs for the Rays. Luke Raley added a solo home run.
ON THE MOUND
Cristopher Sanchez (0-2, 3.26 ERA) is in line to take the mound for Philadelphia. The left-hander allowed two runs (one earned) over six innings in his last start, a 2-1 road defeat against the Nationals on Friday.
He took the loss, yielding seven hits while striking out six and walking one. For Tampa Bay, righty Shawn Armstrong (0-0, 1.15 ERA) will toe the rubber. It’s his first appearance of the season against the Phillies.
Armstrong made two appearances against the Phillies in 2022, both out of the bullpen, striking out two and walking one over two innings (0-0, 4.50).
In his last appearance on Sunday, Armstrong came on in relief on the road against the Mariners. He threw 0.2 scoreless, no-hit innings in the 7-6 loss.
AT THE PLATE
Over the last five games, Philadelphia has averaged 7.0 runs a game, up from their season average of 4.6, while slashing better across the board (.317/.365/.532). Against righties like Armstrong this season, the Phils have a .750 OPS.
Brandon Marsh is the team’s best hitter against right-handers with a .867 OPS in 184 at-bats. Tampa Bay is averaging 5.8 runs per game in the last five, up slightly from 5.5 for the season.
The Rays have a .814 OPS against lefties in 2023, the third highest in MLB. With a .868 OPS over 64 at-bats, Wander Franco has been their best hitter against left-handers.
HOME AND AWAY
Philadelphia is on an 11-game winning streak in road games, bringing their record to 24-23 in 2023. The Phils have scored 4.5 runs per game away from home while allowing 4.9 runs.
Tampa Bay has gone 34-12 at home this season, averaging 5.7 runs per game while surrendering 3.8. In the last 10 meetings at Tropicana Field, each club has won five, though Philadelphia has the scoring advantage with an average final margin of 4.4-4.0.
The Rays lead the AL East by five games over the Orioles. The Phillies are third in the NL East, 11 games behind the Braves.
SportsTips’ MLB Pick:
TB Rays (-130)
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of BetMGM.