The Philadelphia Phillies were like librarians shushing the room in the ninth inning of Game 1: a six-run outburst sent them to a shocking 6-3 victory over the Cardinals in front of silenced fans at Busch Stadium. The Phils need only one more win to advance.
With their loss, the Cardinals odds to win this series have shifted to +250, while the Phillies price is -310, according to FanDuel.
The Cardinals are now +4000 to win the World Series, down from +2000 before their Game 1 collapse. FanDuel has the Phillies at +1400 to win the World Series after their come-from-behind win.
DraftKings sportsbook has Game 2 as basically a tossup: the Phils are -115 and the Cardinals are -105 at home.
Phillies vs Cardinals Game 2 Odds
Here are current Game 2 lines from various legal US sportsbooks.
Phillies Pound Cardinals Bullpen for Stunning Win
The Cardinals were 93-0 when leading by two or more runs entering the ninth inning in postseason history. That perfect record was blemished in Game 1 when the Phillies hung a huge six on the scoreboard in the top of the ninth.
As a result, Philadelphia is one win away from facing the defending champion Atlanta Braves in the National League Divisional Series.
Only one NL team blew fewer saves than the Cardinals this season, but on Friday the bullpen coughed up the lead and allowed the Phillies to steal a game in this short series. Historically, the team that wins the first game of a best-of-three series goes on to win the series 78% of the time. The Cardinals face that sobering fact and a must-win game at home on Saturday.
Now, the Cardinals, favored entering the series, have to find a way to win both Saturday and Sunday or be brushed aside in their own ballpark. They turn to Miles Mikolas to stave off elimination.
The Cardinals and Nolan Arenado must find a way to get a victory on Saturday evening in St. Louis, or their season will come to a sad end.
Phillies vs. Cardinals Game 2 Pitching Matchup
Aaron Nola (11-13, 3.25 ERA) vs. Miles Mikolas (12-13, 3.29 ERA)
In nine career starts against the Cardinals, Aaron Nola has been stellar: 5-3 with a 2.69 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 60 1/3 innings. He has a 6-to-1 K/BB ratio for his career against St. Louis. A caveat: in 2022, Nola has a 6.43 ERA against the Redbirds in seven innings.
St. Louis hands the ball to 33-year old Miles Mikolas, who sounds more like a jazz musician than a professional pitcher. But this season his durability has been smooth like a Miles Davis record, and if he can give his teammates 12-15 outs, St. Louis manager Oliver Marmol can avoid having to empty his bullpen in desperation.
On Friday, Marmol opened himself to criticism by asking his closer Ryan Helsley to get five outs. That blew up like TUMS in a soda can, and now the Cardinals will have to do all they can to win, or the careers of Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina will be over far sooner than they wanted.
Phillies vs. Cardinals Series Game 2 Prediction
There’s no such thing as momentum in sports. Never has been, never will be. The old saying in baseball goes “Momentum is the next day’s starting pitcher.” Well, the Phillies have the edge in the pitching matchup on Saturday. Plus, if there’s ever been a ninth inning rally that could create momentum, it might be what we saw from the Fightin’ Phils on Friday. Say that ten times fast.
We like Nola to be dominant on Saturday, helping the Phils to a sweep of this series and making St. Louis spectators in this postseason.
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