MLB Baseball: Philadelphia Phillies vs. Miami Marlins Preview, Prediction & Odds -- Sept. 3, 2021

by Big Al Staff

Game time: 7:10 p.m. ET
Venue: loanDepot park, Miami, FL
Where to watch: NBCSP, Bally Sports Florida, MLB Network

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Phillies -150, Marlins +130; Over 7.5 -115, Under 7.5 -105
BetMGM: Phillies -143, Marlins +120; Over 7.5 -110, Under 7.5 -110
Caesars: Phillies -145, Marlins +135; Over 7.5 -115, Under 7.5 -105

Season record (entering Thursday)
Phillies: 69-64 (2nd place, NL East) 
Marlins: 55-78 (Last place, NL East)

Larry Ness closed August having earned +$21,301 (at $100/unit) in MLB since Opening Day. He opened September with a 2-1 Wednesday (+$857), highlighted by his 10* win on Boston over the Tampa Bay Rays. 'Light' Thursday MLB card but you "won't want to miss" Larry's 10* Division Total of the Year (all O/U plays 8-4-1 in August MLB).

Phillies - Marlins preview and analysis


Recent form (entering Thursday)
Phillies: Won 6 straight
Marlins: 4-6 in last 10

Suddenly, the Philadelphia Phillies find themselves back in the National League East race.

Sure, it helped that the Phillies have won six straight against the Arizona Diamondbacks and Washington Nationals -- while the Atlanta Braves got swept by the Los Angeles Dodgers -- but that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

The Phillies hope their winning ways continue when facing the Miami Marlins in the first game of a three-game series starting Friday in Miami.

Philadelphia’s offense has stormed back at the right time. Sometimes it just takes a stretch of inferior teams, but this is taking it to another level. The Phillies have scored at least seven runs during every win of this streak, capped with a 12-spot on Tuesday against the Nationals.

The Phillies responded in kind since their 8-7 loss to the Diamondbacks on Aug. 26.

A list of the hottest hitters on the planet are not very long right now. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. may be one, as could Aaron Judge. Bryce Harper might not just be hot; it’s fair to say scorching. Harper has batted .439 the last 11 games with four home runs and 13 RBI.

Just when you think he’s lost his way in the MVP campaign, Harper storms his way back with video game-like numbers.

To top it off, the Phillies found a way to come back from 6-0 down and defeat the Nationals 7-6 with a storm in the late innings. Yeah, that’s a zone, alright. That’s even after an off game for Aaron Nola.

Starting pitcher Kyle Gibson is expected to take the mound for the Phillies. It’s taken a few games, but Gibson is settling in as the player the Phillies hoped when they traded for him from the Texas Rangers. Gibson has won his last two starts, giving up 1 ER in 14 IP. What’s most impressive is that he’s only thrown six total strikeouts. He’s 10-5 with a 2.94 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP.

Philadelphia will return to Citizens Bank Park in the good ol’ PA on Sept. 9 against the Colorado Rockies.

The Marlins have won four of their last six, with two wins against the Cincinnati Reds. They’ll wrap up a series against the New York Mets on Thursday, coming off a 3-1 loss to New York in the opener Tuesday.

Miami didn’t just get two wins against the Reds for nothing. The Marlins held the Reds to only two hits in a 2-1 win in the finale, and then only one run on eight hits in the middle game of the series, winning 6-1 in their last games. Jesus Luzardo is expected to be the starter on the mound for Miami.

While the Marlins have done well at staying competitive in the second half of the season, the Phillies appear to have found a second gear. If that’s worth anything, much like that eight-game winning streak at the beginning of August, this should be a win for Philadelphia.

Prediction


Really like the Phillies in this one, especially after that win. There is that possibility of a mental letdown, but it should be expected that they tack on to this winning streak. Phillies 7-3.

Betting trends


The Phillies are 25-26 (-6.8 net games) when the money line is between -100 and -150 in their favor.

Teams are 3-2 when Gibson takes the mound for first pitch.

The over is 74-45 in the second half of the season for Phillies games in the last 119 games.

The Marlins odds improve the higher the number. Miami is 9-13 when a a home underdog of +125 or more.

Players to watch


Phillies: Andrew McCutchen broke out of his long slump to hit 2-for-5 and drive in four RBI on Thursday. On Wednesday, the former Pittsburgh Pirate went 2-for-4 with three RBI and a home run.

Marlins: Jesus Aguilar enters Thursday on a four-game winning streak. Miami’s leader in home runs has one in his last 15 games.

Projected lineup

Phillies:
Odubel Herrera (L) CF
Jean Segura (R) 2B
Bryce Harper (L) RF
J.T. Realmuto (R) 1B
Andrew McCutchen (R) LF
Ronald Torreyes (R) 3B
Freddy Galvis (S) SS
Rafael Marchan (S) C
Kyle Gibson (R) P

Marlins:
Miguel Rojas (R) SS
Jazz Chisholm Jr. (L) 2B
Jesus Aguilar (R) 1B
Jesus Sanchez (L) RF
Lewis Brinson (R) CF
Isan Diaz (L) 3B
Jorge Alfaro (R) C
Bryan De La Cruz (R) LF
Jesus Luzardo (L) P

Statistical leaders


Phillies:
Batting average: Bryce Harper (.305)
Hits: Bryce Harper (120)
Home runs: Rhys Hoskins (27)
RBI: Rhys Hoskins (71)
Stolen bases: Bryce Harper (12)
Wins: Zack Wheeler (11)
Saves: Hector Neris (12)
ERA: Zack Wheeler (3.01)

Marlins:
Batting average: Miguel Rojas (.267)
Hits: Jesus Aguilar (115)
Home runs: Jesus Aguilar (22)
RBI: Jesus Aguilar (92)
Stolen bases: Jazz Chisholm Jr. (18)
Wins: Sandy Alcantara (8)
Saves: Yimi Garcia (15)
ERA: Sandy Alcantara (3.27)

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