All September, the NL East has been wide open for the New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves to grab. No team has done much of anything consistently to earn the division. However, a Phillies series win would help separate them from the Mets. Can they win one of their next two?
The Mets have been slumping and look like they’ve lost all hope. Can the Phillies take advantage? Find out in our Mets vs Phillies picks and predictions for Saturday, September 18.
Phillies vs Mets game info
• Location: Citi Field, New York, NY
• Date: Saturday, September 18, 2021
• Time: 7:15 p.m. ET
• TV: SNY, NBCSP
Phillies vs Mets odds
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Phillies vs Mets betting preview
Aaron Nola (7-8, 4.58 ERA): It hasn’t been the best season for Aaron Nola. He came into the season as the Phillies ace and certainly hasn’t been better than Zack Wheeler. With a 4.58 ERA, Nola has been far from being an ace but can still rack up the strikeouts when called upon. Nola struck out 10 in his last outing against the Rockies, despite allowing three runs in 5.1 innings of work.
Carlos Carrasco (1-2, 5.59 ERA): I’ve never seen a pitcher like Carrasco before. Carrasco will struggle so badly in the first inning and then respond in the next four or five innings and put together a quality start or something close to it. It’s absolutely amazing, but it’s also dreadful because the Mets always play from behind when he’s on the mound.
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Phillies: Connor Brogdon RP (Out), Adam Haseley OF (Out), Rhys Hoskins 1B (Out), Travis Jankowski OF (Out), Andrew Knapp C (Out), Luke Williams 3B (Out)
Mets: Robert Gsellman RP (Out), Drew Smith RP (Out), Sean Reid-Foley RP (Out)
Find our latest MLB injury reports.
Betting trend to know
Mets are 4-0 in Carrasco’s last four starts vs. National League East. Find more MLB betting trends for Phillies vs. Mets.
Sometimes the box score doesn’t tell the whole story. Aaron Nola has a 3.08 xFIP in the last 30 days along with 34.8 percent strikeouts and 3.6 percent walks. So, while he’s allowed multiple runs in every start in the last 30 days, he’s also been kind of good.
Nola only induces ground balls about 40.3 percent of the time and his batting average of balls in play against is near .300. The reality is, he’s allowing a .352 wOBA to righties and a high-enough ISO to lefties with a .167 number.
Still, it’s mind-boggling that he’s allowed 17 runs in the last 30 days with an xFIP so low, a strikeout rate so high, and a walk rate very low. Make it make sense!
The Mets lineup has still been much better in the month of September in comparison to other months this season. As a group, the Mets have an ISO of .220 and wOBA of .377 against righties. They’ve hit a high number of line drives and have limited ground balls besides leadoff hitters Jonathan Villar and Brandon Nimmo.
On the other hand, Carlos Carrasco will take the hill for the Mets. Again, he’s a guy that will struggle early and then figure it out as the game goes on. His xFIP in the last 30 days is 4.39 but he’s still struck out 22.3 percent of batters, along with walking just 6.3 percent.
The line drives are up and ground balls are down for Carrasco, which is a concern because he’s also allowing plenty of hard contact as of late. If Carrasco gets through the first inning unscathed, the Mets are going to be in business.
That’s a big if though. Bryce Harper, a potential NL MVP, has destroyed right-handed pitching in the last 30 days and will face Carrasco in the first inning.
Both lineups project well when it comes down to it. Nola has allowed multiple runs in eight of his last nine starts. I would hope at this point that Carrasco doesn’t even face Harper and pitches around him with the bases clear.
I’ll trust the Mets to make smart decisions in that regard and believe they’ll pull out the win here with the more appealing offense.
PREDICTION: Mets (+105)
I’m not a full game total backer. It’s hard to judge bullpens and know exactly who will come in during certain situations. I’m not trying to break down the bullpen and their usage in the last 30 days or whatever else.
I have data on Nola, Carrasco and the hitters facing them. With that, I know that Nola and Carrasco have struggled early in games and continue to allow multiple runs in most games this season.
With two lineups that have a high wOBA and plenty of power potential, let’s take the Over 4 in the first five innings between these two teams. If both pitchers allow two runs each in the first five innings, that’s a push. If we get five, it’s a win. This is fair value for these two teams and their offense.
PREDICTION: Over 4 F5 (-110)
Phillies vs Mets betting card
- New York (+105)
- Over 4 F5 (-110)
Picks made on 9/18/2021 at 9:00 a.m. ET
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