The Philadelphia Phillies have not had a whole lot of success on offense in the last two games of the World Series. After routing the Houston Astros 7-0 in Game 3, Houston pitchers combined for a no-hitter in Game 4 and then held the Phillies to six hits in a dramatic 3-2 win in Game 5. Now the Astros have a 3-2 lead in the series, and they will send Framber Valdez, who pitched a gem in Game 2, to the mound as they look to close things out.
The first pitch in Game 6 will take place shortly after 8 p.m. Eastern time at Minute Maid Park in Houston.
Valdez (17-6, 2.82 ERA) will go up against Zack Wheeler ( 12-7, 2.82 ERA) in a rematch of their Game 2 meeting. Wheeler did not fare well in that one, giving up three runs in the first inning and four runs overall in his five-inning stint. Nine Astros reached base against him.
In that game, Valdez went six and the third innings, striking out nine and allowing just one run. This greatly affected the odds at baseball betting sites.
Looking at the World Series odds for Game 6, as they are posted at BetOnline, Houston is the favorite at home.
Philadelphia Phillies + 131
Over 7 runs + 103
Under 7 runs – 123
Phillies + 1.5 runs – 175
Astros – 1.5 runs + 155
One good piece of news for Houston fans is that Jose Altuve, who had been positively shut down in the two series leading up to this one, has caught a little fire at the plate. Altuve’s batting .318 in the World Series, although he doesn’t have a home run or an RBI. Remember that he has 23 postseason home runs, more than anyone in this series. Kyle Tucker has hit two home runs thus far, but maybe the star for the Astros (with regard to position players) is Jeremy Pena, the rookie shortstop who is hitting .361 with a homer.
Kyle Schwarber, who has led the National League this season with 46 homers, has hit a pair of round-trippers in the World Series. Bryce Harper has a home run, but he’s batting only .250. JT Realmuto, the All-Star catcher, has only three hits in 21 at-bats.
Both bullpens have done very well in the World Series. And maybe Philadelphia’s success is more of a surprise, as they have allowed just three runs in 23 innings.
The Astros had the best bullpen era in the major leagues this season, and we had mentioned before that they were the best at preventing home runs. In 18.1 Innings from their relievers, they’ve allowed three runs and struck out 25 batters.
Houston’s bullpen is perhaps fresher, but it’s all hands on deck for the Phillies in this one. Keep in mind that before he underperformed in Game 2, Wheeler brought a string of six very solid starts into that outing. Over 36 Innings, he gave up only six earned runs and 17 hits. Aaron Nola has kind of let Philadelphia down (8 runs in 8-1/3 innings), but we have to give Wheeler a chance to redeem himself here. Let’s look for the Phillies to extend the series to a seventh game on Sunday.
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