Braves vs Phillies NLDS Game 4 Picks and Predictions: Harper Delivers on NLCS Doorstep

The Phillies are on the verge of downing the defending champion Braves, and Bryce Harper has been simply mashing in this series. See why a big name could make you big bucks as our MLB betting picks break down Game 4.

Rohit Ponnaiya - Betting Analyst at
Rohit Ponnaiya • Betting Analyst
Oct 15, 2022 • 10:04 ET • 4 min read
Bryce Harper Philadelphia Phillies MLB picks
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Phillies host the Atlanta Braves in Game 4 of the NLDS on Saturday afternoon. The defending World Series champion Braves are on the brink of elimination after getting shelled 9-1 last night.

Oddsmakers expect them to bounce back with MLB betting lines opening with Atlanta as a -125 road favorite with the Over/Under at 9.

Here are my best free Braves vs. Phillies MLB picks and predictions for October 15. 

Braves vs Phillies best odds

Braves vs Phillies picks and predictions

The Phillies are led by two-time MVP Bryce Harper and they really missed his big bat when he was out of the lineup for two months with a thumb injury.

Harper returned at the end of August, and while he struggled in the last month of the regular season, he's shaken off the rust in the playoffs, going 8-15 at the dish in his last four games with a double and a home run in yesterday's victory. 

The Braves are sending Charlie Morton to the mound this afternoon. Morton has been getting hit hard and was especially bad on the road, where he pitched to a 5.72 ERA with an OBA of .261 in 15 starts.

Morton still has one of the filthiest curveballs around, but all of the other pitches in his arsenal have been getting clobbered. Harper excels against curveballs, slugging .512 against that offering this year, which makes it little surprise that he has a history of lighting up Morton.

Harper has gone 10-24 in his career against Morton with a slugging percentage of .667. I'm riding Harper's hot streak and taking the Over 1.5 on his total bases. 

My best bet: Bryce Harper Over 1.5 total bases (+110)

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Braves vs Phillies NLDS odds

Teams Odds to win series
Steelers Atlanta Braves +180
Browns Philadelphia Phillies -215

Braves vs Phillies moneyline analysis

These were two of the best offenses in the majors during the regular season, with the Braves ranking first in both slugging percentage (.443) and barrel rate (10.9%), while the Phillies were sixth in slugging (.422) and seventh in barrel rate (8.5%).

With the exception of Harper, Philadelphia's best hitters had struggled in the postseason but they broke out yesterday with Kyle Schwarber, Rhys Hoskins, and J.T. Realmuto all picking up hits and combining to score four runs. 

That was the Phillies' first home game since September 25 and they have now gone a commanding 23-9 in their last 32 games at Citizens Bank Park. 

They could be in for another strong offensive performance today with Morton pitching to a 6.23 ERA with an OBA of .275 in his last five starts. The Braves right-hander has also struggled against the Phillies this season, posting a 5.47 ERA with an OBA of .301 in five starts. 

The Phillies might need to score lots of runs because they could allow plenty as well. They'll give the ball to Noah Syndergaard who had a 3.94 ERA with an xERA of 4.43 across 24 regular season starts.

Things get worse after Syndergaard, with Philadelphia's bullpen pitching to a collective 5.10 ERA with a wOBA of .337 since the All-Star break. 

Braves vs Phillies Over/Under analysis

It seems strange to consider that both of today's starters were playing at an All-Star level just four years ago. Morton and Syndergaard have significantly declined since then, which is a big reason why the total for today is so high. 

Morton is in the bottom 20th percentile of pitchers in hard-hit rate (42.1%) and surrendered the ninth-most home runs in the majors (28). That's a recipe for disaster with the shorter outfield dimensions at Citizens Bank Park and a Phillies lineup that ranked sixth in the majors in hard-hit rate (41.1%).

In his prime, Syndergaard averaged more than 98 mph on his fastball, but after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2020 he now hovers around the 94 mph mark. While he has a relatively low hard-hit rate and doesn't walk many batters, he allows way too much contact with his strikeout rate, whiff rate, and xBA (.265) in the bottom 15th percentile.

Atlanta's lineup is filled with power hitters and while they sometimes chase pitches, they usually smash the ball when they make contact. 

Braves vs Phillies trend to know

The Phillies are 23-9 in their last 32 home games. Find more MLB betting trends for Braves vs. Phillies

Braves vs Phillies game info

Location: Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia, PA
Date: Saturday, October 15, 2022
First pitch: 2:07 p.m. ET

Starting pitchers

Charlie Morton (9-6, 4.34 ERA): Morton pitched to a 1.23 WHIP with an OBA of .233 in 31 starts this year. Morton struggled toward the end of the season but is a proven playoff performer and has made three World Series with three different teams over the last five years. He's 7-4 with a 3.35 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP in 78 postseason innings.

Noah Syndergaard (5-2, 4.04 ERA): The 2016 All-Star is a shell of his former self and went 5-2 with a 4.12 ERA, 3.66 FIP, and 1.32 WHIP in 54 2-3 innings with the Phillies since being acquired at the trade deadline. 

Syndergaard came out of the bullpen to pitch an inning in Philadelphia's Game 2 loss (walking one batter and allowing no hits) in Atlanta. He finished the regular season by pitching 5 2-3 innings of shutout ball against the Nationals. 

Braves vs Phillies latest injuries

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Braves vs Phillies weather

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