The Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies square off on Thursday with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Paolo Espino (0-3, 3.78 ERA) will start for the Nationals with Noah Syndergaard (5-8, 3.83 ERA) on the mound for the Phillies.
Washington (36-70) lost three of its last four contests heading into this four-game set in Philadelphia. Espino will make his 30th appearance and 10th start of 2022 and is coming off an outing where he allowed four runs over 4.2 innings of work against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Nationals average the fifth-fewest runs per game (3.8) as they continue life without Juan Soto.
Philadelphia (56-48) won six of its last seven games as it gets ready for a seven-game homestand. Syndergaard will make his Phillies debut after making 15 starts for the Los Angeles Angels this season but was traded at the deadline. Philadelphia ranks No. 8 in runs per game (4.6), and Kyle Schwarber has the second most home runs this season with 33.
Nationals vs. Phillies
Pitchers: Paolo Espino vs. Noah Syndergaard
First pitch: 7:05 p.m. ET
Nationals local broadcast: MASN
Phillies local broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Run Line: Phillies -1.5 (-120)
Run total: 9
Moneyline odds: Phillies -225, Nationals +190
Moneyline pick: Phillies -225
Espino has decent season-long numbers, but he has been giving up too many runs in short starts in recent outings. Over his last six games, he has a 6.23 ERA and was far more productive out of the bullpen to start the season. The Nationals are at a disadvantage at the plate and on the mound, and there’s a lot to like about the Phillies even with a small payout.
Player prop pick: Noah Syndergaard Under 4.5 strikeouts (-135)
The Phillies new starter has seen a fairly large dip in his strikeout numbers in 2022 despite his success on the mound. Prior to this season, Syndergaard had never had a K/9 under 9.0, but it is currently at 7.2 even with a decent sample size. He will get a matchup with a Nationals lineup that averages the second-fewest strikeouts per game (7.2).
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