8:07PM EST: Diamondbacks ML +150 (3 Units)
Arizona's playing with house money now. Most didn't expect them to even make it to the NLCS and even fewer had this going back to Philly once they went down 0-2 in the series. But alas it's Game 7 against last year's NL pennant winners. All the pressure is on Philly, especially after yesterday's embarrassing 5 to 1 loss. If Philly loses tonight they officially came up short this year while Arizona's already far exceeded expectations. Obviously Arizona is looking to punch their ticket to the world series for the first time since 2001 but it'll be easier for them to come out loose and play freely.
Diamondbacks start rookie Brandon Pfaadt. He climbed all the way up to #21 on MLB's prospect list this year but he's in the MLB and here to stay. He's been dominant in his last two playoff starts and 3 of his last 4 starts overall. He finished the regular season with a 5.2 IP shutout. He then struggled in his first career post-season start allowing 3ER in just 2.2 IP. But he followed that up with 4.1 shutout innings against the Dodgers in the divisional round and 5.2 shutout innings against these Phillies in Game 3. He's allowed just 2 hits in each of his last 2 starts and racked up 9 strikeouts against Philly last Thursday. It was a bigtime start. Arizona was down 0-2 in the series when he delivered that Gem and got Arizona back in this series.
There was actually a bit of controversy in that game as Arizona manager Torey Lovullo elected to pull him at just 70 pitches. He went through the lineup twice and he wasn't allowed to face them a third time. Should help a bit tonight as the Philly lineup was only able to get 2 at bats against him.
Philadelphia starts Ranger Suarez. He's also pitched incredibly well in the post-season but he's really struggled at home this year. He posted a 5.45 across 12 Home starts during the regular season. His final two starts of the regular season came at Home and he allowed 4 and 6 ER. He faced Arizona twice during the regular season, allowing 5 ER against them at Home but blanking them in Arizona. Hoping for a similar trend here. He's a quality pitcher but he's really not some True Ace. He posted a 3.65 ERA in his first full season as a starter in 2022 and had a 4.18 ERA this year. Good but not Great.
Both bullpens have pitched well and neither starter will have a very long leash. The biggest difference is the Phillies bullpen has 1 win and 3 losses and is just 4 for 7 in Save Opportunities this post-season while Arizona's has 4 wins without a loss and 5 for 6 in SVO. Phillies regular closer Craig Kimbrel has taken 2 of those losses and against Arizona.
The Diamondbacks are just the team with the momentum at the moment. Their offense has waken up and has at least 8 hits in each of their last 4 games. Phillies offense has looked like a shell of what it was to open the post-season and came away with just 6 hits yesterday. They appear to have cooled off after such an impressive start to the post-season. Hard to stay so hot for so long.
This game can truly go either way but that pressure can build up quick on Philly if Arizona comes out hot again. Great value on the snaked +150 here.