According to 5 Dimes Sportsbook, the Phillies are a -151 betting favorite and the total is 7 runs. At best, this is an even matchup with the Phils having the homefield advantage. Hamels is coming back from an injury and has gotten beaten up by the Mets in the past.
New York on the other hand, is playing inspiring baseball without their ace Matt Harvey this season. To sum it up, the Mets are a team on the rise while the Fightin Phils are a team that’s declining and aging at a rapid pace.
The fact that the Mets are on one of the top teams in the National League East Division is simply amazing. This is a team that ranks 20th in the league in runs, 29th in batting average, 25th in on-base percentage, and 30th in slugging percentage. David Wright (1 HR, 15 RBI, .275) hasn’t hit like a captain and if you look up and down the Mets lineup, they’re far from intimidating.
While Eric Young Jr. has added a spark to the leadoff position with his electric speed (12 SB), he hasn’t hit for average (.216). That said, there have been many games where Young has gotten the Mets off to an early lead with a simple walk, steal, and then being driven in. This is part of the Mets recipe for winning along with their solid pitching.
Utley is one of those difficult players in defining his status. When he’s good, he’s really good. Other times, he’s merely average. He has been inconsistent in the past, but this season Utley has been one of the best players in the National League, sporting a .360 batting average along with 3 home runs and 14 runs batted in. He’s never going to be a 40 home run hitter, but when he’s at his best, he can carry a team.
The leadoff position is key in having a successful offense, and the Phillies really picked up an under-rated star in Ben Revere from the Minnesota Twins. Revere will never hit for power, but he picks up key hits and is a threat on the basepath. On the season, Revere has 5 RBI, 9 SB, and is batting .312. The one major knock on his game is his on-base percentage. Revere has only walked twice this season, and that’s unthinkable for a leadoff hitter.
Niese vs. Hamels
The key to this game will be the pitching, and most of it rests upon the shoulders of Cole Hamels. Jonathan Niese (1-2, 2.45) has been spectacular this season, but has received very little run support from the Mets. Hamels had a respectable outing in his 1st start of the season, as he allowed 2 runs and 6 hits in 6 inning pitches in a 5-2 loss to the Dodgers. The Mets have owned Hamels throughout the years, and as New York has improved as a team, this is a spot where they could light him up.
I’m looking for an upset here. There’s no way that Philadelphia should be favored so much as your MLB pick. Jonathan Niese has been very reliable for New York this season, while Cole Hamels is a question mark.
Free MLB Pick: New York Mets +139 at 5 Dimes