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Phillies vs Marlins – 4/12/19 MLB Pick, Odds, and Predictions

Philadelphia Phillies vs Miami Marlins MLB Baseball Friday, April 12, 2019 (7:05pm et) Current Odds: Phillies -160, Total Runs 8.5

When the Miami Marlins play host to the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday night to open a three-game series, they will see an old friend in Realmuto, their former All-Star catcher.

Realmuto, who had asked for a trade because the Marlins are rebuilding after last year’s abysmal 63-98 record, surely feels like he made the right decision.

In fact, the National League East — so far — is shaping up as expected. The Phillies are battling for supremacy with the New York Mets and the Washington Nationals, and the Marlins are in last place again.

Realmuto is off to a slow start — batting just .237 with one home run and a .675 OPS — and the Phillies are riding their first losing streak of the young season, a two-game mini-slide.

The Phillies were outscored 25-7 in those two consecutive losses against the Nationals.

“We just have to bounce back,” Phillies pitcher Nick Pivetta said.

Fortunately for the Phillies, their schedule reads “Marlins” for this weekend, and that should be a good thing for the guys from the City of Brotherly Love.

Just ask the Cincinnati Reds, who on Thursday completed a three-game sweep/takedown of the Marlins.

Here’s how bad things are for the Marlins:

The Reds had lost eight straight games until the Marlins showed up in Cincinnati. Then, all of a sudden, the Reds held Miami to a total of just one run in those three games.

In 11 innings against the Cincinnati bullpen, the Marlins managed just six hits and no runs, striking out 15 times.

“It hard to explain,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said when asked about Miami’s scoring drought. “It’s one of those things.

“I don’t think we’re going to be a great offensive team, but I definitely know we are better than this. We need to have more quality at-bats and a little better plan as we walk up there.”

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The Marlins have four starters batting under .200 — third baseman Brian Anderson, first baseman Neil Walker, left fielder Curtis Granderson and right fielder Peter O’Brien.

But Mattingly said Anderson — who went 2-for-3 with a walk on Thursday to raise his average to .178 — may have turned a corner.

“Anytime you see a few go through — it’s like the shooter (in basketball) that sees one go in the basket,” Mattingly said.

“Even the walk at the end of the game — he didn’t throw that at-bat away. Hopefully, it’s a step in the right direction.”

Friday’s pitching matchup features a pair of right-handers: Miami’s Sandy Alcantara (1-0, 1.50 ERA) against Philadelphia’s Jake Arrieta (1-1, 2.77).

Alcantara is overpowering at times with a fastball that averages 95.8 mph and has hit 100 mph. But he is also inconsistent. After striking out six with no walks in eight innings in his 2019 debut, the 23-year-old walked five and failed to strike out a batter in his most recent start.

As for Arrieta, there is cause for concern. His ERA has gone up in each of his past three years (from 3.10 to 3.53 to 3.96). He is 33 years old. And, in his most recent start, he got just one swing-and-miss in seven innings of a loss to the Minnesota Twins.

Arrieta, who struck out 9.6 batters per nine innings during his Cy Young season of 2015 with the Chicago Cubs, has seen that figure decrease — 7.2 last year and just 4.8 so far this season. His sinker — once dominant — was hit for a .270 batting average last year.

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