Aaron Nola has been mowing down hitters so far this season, and he takes his hot start into a home outing against the New York Mets on Thursday. Photo from @MLBStats (Twitter).
- Aaron Nola, who has 29 strikeouts in three starts, starts for the Phillies against the Mets on August 15th at 6:05pm ET
- Mets’ Steven Matz enters his fifth start of 2020 still in search of his first win
- Find odds, game analysis, and betting advice in the article below
A battle of two pitchers on opposite trajectories is set for Saturday, August 15th, as Aaron Nola and the Philadelphia Phillies host Steven Matz and the New York Mets at 6:05 pm ET.
Matz (0-3, 8.20 ERA) is winless in four starts — and has taken the loss in his past three — while Nola (1-1, 2.79 ERA) is coming off a dominant 12-strikeout outing against the Atlanta Braves.
New York Mets vs Philadelphia Phillies Odds
|Team||Moneyline||Runline||O/U Run Total at FanDuel|
|New York Mets||+190||+1.5 (-108)||Over 8.5 (-120)|
|Philadelphia Phillies||-225||-1.5 (+108)||Under 8.5 (-102)|
Odds taken Aug. 14
Alec Bohm Has Arrived
The Phillies’ top prospect, Alec Bohm, made his MLB debut this week and doubled in his first game — and in his first at-bat, no less.
That was quick.
The first big-league hit for Alec Bohm! pic.twitter.com/Ipgg6xJ2i9
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) August 13, 2020
Bohm, the third overall pick in 2016, posted a career .842 OPS in 165 minor league games. He’s expected to become the team’s everyday third baseman, with a capability of also playing first.
Still, you can understand if Bohm’s impact isn’t instant. He’s 24, but adjusting to MLB-caliber pitching in real time. After his double, he went 0-for-3 with a strikeout.
Mets Career Stats vs Nola
What’s The Deal With McNeil?
Mets outfielder Jeff McNeil crashed into a stadium wall while making a great catch on Thursday, which required him to be carted off the field.
Never been so disappointed to watch @SportsCenter top 10 and see nothing…..🤷🏻♂️ pic.twitter.com/RiED8dUh9U
— Jeff McNeil (@JeffMcNeil805) August 14, 2020
Fortunately, he dodged a major injury and is day-to-day with knee soreness. He was not in the starting lineup Friday, which means he might also miss Saturday’s game, but he won’t be dealing with something long term.
Jeff McNeil is not in tonight’s lineup, but he says he’s “feeling all right, feeling better than yesterday.”
He woke up this morning sore, but has avoided the injured list.
“I thought it was much worse,” McNeil said. “It didn’t feel like my knee was too stable.”
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) August 14, 2020
If McNeil is out Saturday, his offensive presence will be missed. He is top five on the team in hits, RBIs and batting average.
Who Can Stop Nola?
Aaron Nola posted a career high 10.2 strikeouts per 9 innings last year, and so far he’s well on his way to obliterating that mark.
Nola has fanned 29 batters in three starts (13.5 K/9), displaying the type of dominance that gives bettors confidence.
Aaron Nola, 93mph Painted Two Seamer. 🎨 pic.twitter.com/xyMv1XsghK
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 11, 2020
Weirdly enough, Nola hasn’t beaten the Mets in any of his past five starts — but that’s because he has collected four no-decisions. He is still 1-0 with a 2.73 in those recent matchups, which date back to 2018.
Phillies Career Stats vs Matz
Phillies Attack Matz
Steven Matz is in desperate need of a bounce-back game, but there’s no indication that this will be it.
Several Phillies have posted menacing numbers against Matz, as seen in the table above. He has failed to complete more than 5.1 innings in each of his past three starts, which could be a problem for the Mets’ bullpen, after ace Jacob deGrom was scratched from his Friday start with a stiff neck.
Bryce Harper is one of the Phillies who has been particularly effective versus Matz (.333, one home run, six RBIs in 27 at-bats). He has also been effective against pretty much everyone this year, given Harper entered Friday with the highest OPS in the majors (1.202).
Bryce Harper: CLUTCH.
(MLB x @BankofAmerica) pic.twitter.com/d6MRGW3C91
— MLB (@MLB) August 12, 2020
Given the trend of the starting pitchers, the Phillies’ recent history against Matz and the fact that Philadelphia has won 10 of the past 14 matchups, roll with the Phillies.
Pick: Philadelphia Phillies (-190)
Jordan Horrobin is a sports journalist whose MLB, NHL, NFL and NCAA work has appeared in outlets such as The Athletic, MLB.com, the Detroit Free Press and more. He is currently based in Toronto, also working as a contributor for Forbes.com and a freelance editor for Sportsnet.