The St. Louis Cardinals and Philadelphia Phillies square off on Saturday with first pitch set for 4:05 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Rookie left-hander Matthew Liberatore will be making his first appearance for the Cardinals since June 14. The Phillies' probable starter is Kyle Gibson, who scuffled in June.
The Cardinals (43-36) lost Friday’s game in Philadelphia, which put a damper on Nolan Arenado’s second career cycle. It was St. Louis’ first cycle in 17 years. Arenado has multiple hits in eight of his past 14 games. He has recorded 11 extra-base hits and 11 RBIs during that stretch. NL MVP frontrunner Paul Goldschmidt is one homer away from career No. 300. Liberatore was recalled from Triple-A to make this start and has compiled a 2-1 record with a 4.00 ERA through four starts (18 innings) in the majors.
The Phillies (41-37) have managed to stay afloat without Bryce Harper thanks in large part to Rhys Hoskins and Kyle Schwarber. The former has homered in three consecutive games and is slashing .333/.449/.701 over his past 25 contests. The latter crushed 12 homers and drove in 27 runs over 27 games last month. Gibson allowed five runs in 2.2 innings his last time out. He has pitched to a 5.81 ERA over his previous five starts, but the Phillies are 4-1 in those games.
Cardinals vs. Phillies
Pitchers: Matthew Liberatore vs. Kyle Gibson
First pitch: 4:05 p.m. ET
Cardinals local broadcast: Bally Sports Midwest
Phillies local broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Run Line: Phillies -1.5 (+150)
Run total: 10.5
Moneyline odds: Phillies -125, Cardinals +105
Moneyline pick: Phillies -125
Liberatore has the stuff to be an ace in the near future, but the 22-year-old isn’t a finished product yet. And although Gibson has not posted good overall numbers, he has pitched much better in the friendly confines of Citizens Bank Park (4-1, 3.21 ERA). It should also be noted that the Phillies’ much-maligned bullpen has registered a 0.65 ERA and limited hitters to a .105 average over the past nine games. So, the home team gets the slight edge here.
Player prop pick: Kyle Schwarber OVER 0.5 RBIs
Schwarber possesses a very respectable .452 slugging percentage and .798 OPS versus left-handed pitchers this season, so don’t let the lefty-on-lefty matchup scare you away here. He has racked up 14 RBIs over his past nine games, including at least one in seven of those games.
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