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The Pirates are in the middle of a losing streak and in Game 1 of an NL series there is a Phillies team that gets lost.
(This preview of Game 1 is for Friday and will be announced before the end of each team’s game on Thursday. When these games are over, check back for more info, trends and odds).
The Phillies have been a .500 team too late, hovering around .500 on the season. They are in second place in the NL East just a few games out of first place.
The Pirates have fought too late and they have the second most victories in the NL. They are over 20 games out of first place in NL Central and the main reason is a lineup that ranks dead last in baseball in scoring races.
Velasquez seems to be turning things around
Vince Velasquez (3-5 5.54 ERA 1.43 WHIP) takes the mound in this game and in his last start he was turned on in six runs on five hits, including two HR, on just 2 1/3 innings in a poor 15-3 loss against Atlanta Braves. The Phillies have lost three of his last four starts, giving up at least five runs in each of the losses. This is Velasquez’s first season start against the Pirates. He has had trouble giving up the long ball too late as he has given up seven HR in the three losses in his last four starts.
Rhys Hoskins leads Philly in HR and RBI, and while he only hits .235 on the season, he does have five RBIs over the course of his last five games. Jean Segura leads the team hitting .310 and he has a strike of nine games. Over the course of the season, Philadelphia has been solid at home, but about 10 games under 0.500 on the way.
Third time with Crowe?
Wil Crowe (2-5 5.89 ERA 1.57 WHIP) starts in this NL matchup and the Bucs look set to win their third start in a row. In his final start, he gave up two runs on four hits in 5 1/3 innings in a 10-2 win over the San Francisco Giants. Pittsburgh has won his last two starts, giving up six runs in 10 2/3 innings and getting 19 runs of support. He has given up two races in two of his last three home starts and he has given up on four HR in his last three starts. This is Crowe’s first start of the season against the Phillies.
Bryan Reynolds leads Bucs in HR and RBI and strikes over. 300 on the season and has hit safely in eight of his last nine games. Adam Frazier was the team leader who beat .324, but he was recently sent to the Padres, and with the club out of the playoffs, they are likely to swap some more players. This season, Pittsburgh has several games under .500 at home.
Pittsburgh Pirates are:
The Philadelphia Phillies are: