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MLB Preview and Pick - Phillies at Braves

June 30, 2009
MLB Preview and Free Pick - Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves 7:10 ET

By Robbie Gainous

The Phillies and Braves open a three-game set at the Ted on Tuesday night with Joe Blanton scheduled to get the ball for the Phillies and Derek Lowe for the Braves.

Chase Utley of the PhilliesPhiladelphia should be excited about facing NL teams again after suffering through another interleague portion of their season.

The Phillies went 6-12 against the American League this year and 4-11 during the regular season last year for a 10-23 combined record versus the AL.

If we look at just their NL record for the same time period we see they are a league best 121-81 versus National League teams during that same time frame.

The Ted has been very good to the Phillies with them taking all nine games versus the Braves here last season and winning fourteen of the last seventeen visits to ATL overall.

Philadelphia even with their poor record during interleague play were able to win their last two games versus the Blue Jays and had won ten of their last thirteen NL games before the latest edition of interleague play began.

Philadelphia's Joe Blanton is 4-4 on the year with an ERA of 5.06 although over his last three trips to the bump his ERA is a solid 3.20.

In his last start versus the Braves earlier this season they tagged him for six runs on eight hits over eight innings of work for a 6 to 2 loss.

We expect Blanton's fortunes to change tonight as our Pitcher Efficiency Index projects a Quality Start for Blanton and a projected win over the Braves at the Ted on Tuesday night.

The Braves Derek Lowe will take the hill with his 7-6 record and ERA of 4.53. Lowe is currently on a three-game losing skid with an ERA of 12.34 over that span.

In his last outing versus the Yankees he was pounded for eleven hits and eight runs in only three innings of an 11 to 7 loss.

Our projection from our Pitcher Efficiency Index is not quite as bright for Lowe in this situation even though he has been solid against the Phillies in the past we expect him to struggle here.

Lowe is 4-12 (-12.4) in home games when playing against a team with a win percentage of 51 to 54 percent since 1997.

Philadelphia is 10-1 (+10.5) in road games vs. a bullpen whose ERA is 3.75 to 4.50 this season and 10-1 (+9.5) in road games vs. teams averaging 0.5 or less stolen bases per game this season.

The Phillies are 17-8 (+10.6) on the road and 12-6 (+8.5) as a road underdog of +150 or less this season.

Our TPR (Team Performance Ratings) Index projects a Phillies win by 0.77 runs over the Braves tonight and our Math Model also favors the Phillies with a projected win of 1.3 runs.

The combination of technical, situational and fundamental factors point to a Phillies win at the Ted so back the visitor here as they continue to build on their most recent winning streak with a game one win over the Braves.

Free Pick: Philadelphia Phillies +115 available at Sportsbook.com.

Check out more free picks for Tuesday or the mlb baseball betting forum for trends, contests and information.


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