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Expect Wheeler to Roll Over Braves Lineup Friday Night

Zack Wheeler and the Philadelphia Phillies are solid home favorites in MLB betting odds Friday night vs the Atlanta Braves.

Dansby Swanson hit a third-inning grand slam and Charlie Morton held the Phillies to two runs over six-plus innings Thursday as Atlanta took the opener of this important four-game series 7-2. The game marked the seventh time in the last 10 meetings that the total has gone OVER.

Atlanta Braves vs Philadelphia Phillies
  • Date/Time: July 23, 7:05 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: Citizens Bank Park
  • TV Coverage: Bally Sports Southeast, NBCSP
  • Opening Odds: Phillies -125 | O/U 7.5 (Line History)
  • Braves vs Phillies Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

Philadelphia opened as a -125 favorite for Friday’s matchup, but the early money is backing Phillies starter Zack Wheeler and the line has moved to -150, with the Braves paying out at +140. The total opened at 7.5 (-110) and hasn’t moved off that number. Philadelphia has gone OVER the total in five of its last six games, while Atlanta has gone OVER in six of its last eight.

Starting Pitchers Analysis

In his last appearance, Braves starter Max Fried went seven shutout innings vs Tampa Bay, allowing only four hits and a walk while fanning seven Rays. For the season, Fried is 7-5 with a 4.29 ERA and 1.33 WHIP. In six road starts, he is only 2-2 with a concerning 6.43 ERA and 1.71 WHIP.

Zack Wheeler has been one of the best pitchers in baseball this year with a 7-5 record, 2.44 ERA and 152 strikeouts in 125.2 innings. However, Wheeler has given up eight earned runs over only 11.2 innings in his last two outings. He has dominated Atlanta in three starts this year, allowing only three earned runs in 19.2 innings and striking out 26.

Atlanta News & Notes

With the win last night, Atlanta jumped into a tie with Philadelphia for second place in the NL East Division; both teams are 47-48 and trail the New York Mets by four games.

Atlanta is 21-23 on the road, but the Braves’ +30 run differential on the season suggests they might be a better team than their overall record indicates. Atlanta is 13-15 in 28 games as an underdog this year.

Braves superstar Ronald Acuna Jr. underwent successful ACL surgery on his right knee Thursday after injuring it in a July 10 game. Atlanta is 3-4 since Acuna went down. 

Philadelphia News & Notes

Last night’s loss dropped the Phillies four games back of the Mets in the NL East and eight games back of the San Diego Padres for the final wild-card spot in the National League. Philadelphia is on a mini three-game losing streak and is only 5-5 in the last 10 games. The Phillies are 27-18 when playing at home.

In their last 11 games at home vs Atlanta, the Phils are now 8-3. OVERs continue to hit for the team, with 12 of its last 15 games eclipsing the posted total.

Betting Pick: Philadelphia -150

Zack Wheeler has stumbled a little in his last two starts, but he will right the ship tonight vs a Braves team that is missing its best player for the rest of the season.  Max Fried has an ERA of 6.43 on the road and that is enough to make me take the home favorites from Philly.

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Shark Bites
  • The OVER is 9-4 in Atlanta’s last 13 games.
  • Philadelphia is 8-3 in its last 11 at home vs Atlanta.
  • The OVER is 5-0 in Max Fried’s last 5 starts.