The Nationals have only theoretical chances of making the playoffs, and anything but a victory over their divisional rivals with see these faints vanishing for good. Washington will have its best pitcher on the mound for the final game of the series, but they can expect stiff opposition from Philadelphia.
Odds: Winner Sports 1.75
Two years ago, this game would’ve been the highlight of the day in Major League Baseball, because two of the best starting pitchers in the league would fight each other. Zimmerman is among the leaders with 15 victories, but with an earned run average of 3.33 he could’ve hit the 20 victories threshold by now. What held him back was insufficient run support and the last two couple of months were particularly tough for Ryan who left the baseball diamond without a decision after several quality outings.
Roy Halladay can relate to this, as he went through something very similar two years ago when playing for Toronto and single-handedly winning games for the Blue Jays. He expected to find everything he needed in Philadelphia, but unfortunately both he and his new team were frustrated by the outcome. Halladay is trying to shake off an injury and manager Ryne Sandberg is cautious not to push the starting pitcher too much. In his recent start he didn’t last more than five innings against the lowly Chicago Cubs and was tagged for two runs, but left with no decision after his team won by a narrow margin.
Washington clearly has the better starting pitcher ready to play a decisive role in the final game of the series while Philadelphia is trusting a fading legend. Odds of 1.75 for a Nationals’ victory offered by Winner Sports are far from perfect, but that’s the most punters can hope for right now.