Philadelphia Phillies at Tampa Bay Rays odds, picks and best bets
The Philadelphia Phillies (28-29, 3rd in NL East) will try to secure a playoff spot in a weekend series against the AL East champion Tampa Bay Rays (37-20). The first pitch of Friday's series opener will be thrown at 6:40 p.m. ET. Below, we analyze the Phillies-Rays betting odds and lines, with MLB picks and best bets.
Phillies at Rays: Projected starting pitchers
RHP Vince Velasquez vs. RHP Charlie Morton
Velasquez: 1-1, 8 games (6 starts), 5.46 ERA, 4.6 BB/9, 12.1 K/9, 4.6 BB/9, 29 2/3 IP
- Completed 6 innings with just 2 hits and one earned run allowed in his last start against the Toronto Blue Jays (Sept. 19).
- Has struggled to an ugly 8.31 ERA through two road starts lasting a total of 8 2/3 innings. Has a much improved 4.29 ERA over 21 innings at home.
Morton: 2-2, 8 starts, 4.64 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 9.3 K/9, 2.5 BB/9, 33 IP
- Has an ERA over 3.99 for the first time since 2016 with the Phillies. His strikeout rate is down while his hits rate is up nearly 3 batters per nine.
- Morton spun 5 innings of one-run ball against the Baltimore Orioles his last time out (Sept. 19).
Phillies at Rays: Key injuries
(Get the latest injury news here.)
- 1B Rhys Hoskins (elbow) out
- 3B Michael Brosseau (oblique) questionable
- 1B Ji-Man Choi (hamstring) out
- 3B Yandy Diaz (hamstring) out
- OF Austin Meadows (oblique) out
Phillies at Rays: Odds, lines, picks and betting tips
Phillies 4, Rays 3
Money line (ML)
These final series of the 2020 MLB regular season are going to be good for chasing value with the underdogs. The Rays (-167) claimed the AL East crown and have several injuries they'll be resting until the postseason. Take the PHILLIES (+145), as they sit a half-game back of the San Francisco Giants for the final seed in the National League.
Both teams had the day off Thursday. Philadelphia last beat the Washington Nationals 12-3 Wednesday. Tampa Bay beat the New York Mets 8-5. Expect the Phillies to lean on Velasquez more than the Rays will with Morton, with the playoff spot in reach.
New to sports betting? A $10 bet on the Phillies to win would return a profit of $14.50.
We still have some adequate value with PHILLIES +1.5 (-150) on the run line. They'll need to either lose by just one run or win outright.
Philadelphia is 10-10 ATS as the underdog this season, while Tampa Bay is just 18-26 as the favorite. Just two of the Rays' last six games were decided in a win by 2 or more runs.
Go with the UNDER 8.5 (-110) with both starters coming off of a solid outing. Morton isn't likely to go deep into the game, but he'll be relieved by a Rays bullpen ranked fourth in MLB with a 3.50 ERA.
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