Run Line Pick: New York Mets at Philadelphia Phillies
New York Mets @ Philadelphia Phillies 8/19/18
Time: 7:05 PM ET
Where: Bowman Field, Williamsport, PA
Listed Pitchers: Jason Vargas (NY) & Nick Pivetta (Phil)
Moneyline: New York +180 / Philadelphia -195
In conjunction with the ongoing Little League World Series, the Big Leaguers make an appearance in Williamsport when the Phillies and Mets meet Sunday night at Bowman Field. How are we playing this game with our daily free MLB picks?
MLB Betting Line
Sunday’s MLB betting odds opened Philly at around -190 over the Mets, with an over/under of 9 runs. The early betting action then pushed the Phillies about a nickel, to approximately -195.
Philly could also be found getting around +110 giving the run and a half on the MLB run line.
These teams have split the first four games of this five-game series, all played at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. They split a doubleheader Thursday, scoring a total of 43 runs, as the Mets won 24-4, Philly taking the nightcap 9-6. The Phillies then won again Friday 4-2 while New York took Saturday’s game 3-1.
The Mets are now 5-3 over their last eight games and 21-21 over their last 42, following that disastrous start to this season.
Philly is now 4-6 over its last 10.
Big-picture, at 68-55 the Phillies trail first-place Atlanta by a half-game in the NL East, but they also lead St. Louis by a half-game for the top spot in the National League wild-card race.
New York, meanwhile, at 53-69 is playing out the string, shooting for a better future.
The Mets lead this season series with Philly seven games to five.
Sunday’s Starting Arms
Pivetta (7-9, 4.37), by our strict standards, is 9/24 on quality starts this season, working on a run of three in a row. Tuesday he limited one of the best lineups in baseball, Boston’s, to one run and three hits through six innings, and over his last three starts, he’s held foes to three runs and 12 hits through 18 innings. On the season the Phillies are 13-11 with Pivetta, with unders going 12-10.
This is Pivetta’s first outing against the Mets this season. Last season, as a rookie in four starts against New York, Pivetta allowed 12 runs and 20 hits through 21 2/3 innings. Philly split those four games, with overs going 3-1.
Lefty Vargas (2-9, 8.10) is just 1/13 on quality starts this year, but that one came his last time out when he held Baltimore to two runs and five hits through six innings. However, in his first three starts after doing a stint on the DL, he got banged around for 10 runs through 9 2/3 innings. On the year the Mets are just 2-11 with Vargas, with unders going 7-4.
This will be Vargas’ first start against Philadelphia since 2011 when he was with Seattle.
Philly gets our handicapping check-mark in this pitching match-up.
Sunday Batting Splits
New York ranks 26th in the Majors this season against right-handed pitching with a .239 team batting average, 17th with a .318 team OBP and 22nd with a .404 team slugging percentage.
The Phillies rank 24th against left-handed pitching with a .233 BA, 15th with a .323 OBP and 27th with a .360 slugging percentage.
We gotta give the Mets a short edge with the sticks for Sunday.
The New York bullpen ranks 26th in the ML this year with a 4.83 ERA and 26th with a 1.43 WHIP. This unit should be well-rested, though, after Jake deGrom tossed a complete game Saturday.
The Philly pen ranks 13th in ERA at 3.93 and 16th in WHIP at 1.32.
Philadelphia gets the nod in the comparison of the bullpens, too.
Bowman Field, home to the Single-A Williamsport Cutters, plays 323 feet down the line in left, 411 to dead center and 331 down the line in right. Last year the Pirates beat the Cardinals on this field 6-3, a game that played under a total of 9.5 runs.
Unders are 9-3 in Mets-Phillies games this year, which have skewed very low-scoring, other than that unexpected outburst Thursday.
Free MLB Picks
Philly gets two of our handicapping check-marks, and most importantly owns a considerable advantage in the pitching match-up. But the line on this game is almost prohibitive. So instead, we’ll take a chance and play the Phillies on the run line, chasing a little better price and lay our action at BetOnline where we can get +100 on the run line.