October 2, 2023

Series preview: Cubs at Phillies, September 14 – September 16


Photo by Quinn Harris/USA TODAY Sports

Even in the team’s best years, it’s difficult for the Phillies to hold the city’s attention once the Eagles season get underway. When the Phillies lose three out of four to one of the worst road teams in the majors on the same weekend when the Eagles have an exciting season-opening victory, you’re probably going to hear a lot more E-A-G-L-E-S cheers from the fans at Citizens Bank Park.

The Phillies still technically have a shot at the playoffs. The remaining schedule is easy, and they’re still somehow only 2.5 games out of the second wild card spot. But after what we saw this weekend, does anyone really think they have a playoff push in them? And if they somehow do make a push, will more than a handful of fans in the city even notice?

But hey, let’s try and stay a little positive as the Chicago Cubs come to town for a three game series.

Here are a few things to look out for this series.

Last time they met

The Phillies traveled to Wrigley Field in early July, and the bats were going ff. They averaged almost 10 runs per game in winning three of four.

Will we see a similar output this week? Considering they won’t be facing Jake Arrieta this time around, probably not.

What’s up with the Cubbies?

Not much has happened since late July. After hovering near the .500 mark for most of the first half, the Cubs tanked after the All-Star Break, and went a combined 16-36 in July and August. They wisely decided to be sellers, and traded away names like Craig Kimbrel, Anthony Rizzo, Javy Baez, and Kris Bryant.

They gave their fans a brief burst of happiness last week when they won seven in a row, but after losing three straight to the San Francisco Giants this weekend, that success seems like a distant memory.

Harper needs help

Bryce Harper is having one of the best offensive seasons in team history, and the team is going to waste it because nobody else on the team can hit. A hitter as good as Harper should lift the rest of the lineup, but that doesn’t seem to happen very often.

Pitching Matchups

Game 1: Kyle Gibson (RHP, 10-6, 3.38 ERA) vs. Adrian Sampson (RHP, 0-2, 2.20 ERA)
Game 2: Ranger Suárez (LHP, 6–4, 1.38 ERA) vs. Alec Mills (RHP, 6–6, 4.35 ERA)
Game 3: TBD vs. Kyle Hendricks (RHP, 14–6, 4.54 ERA)

The numbers

Run Differential:
Phillies: -19
Cubs: -112

Runs Scored Per Game:
Phillies: 4.55
Cubs: 4.28

Runs Allowed Per Game:
Phillies: 4.69
Cubs: 5.06

Game times and Broadcast

  • Tuesday September 14 at 7:05pm ET on NBC Sports Philadelphia, 94.1 WIP
  • Wednesday September 15 at 7:05pm ET on NBC Sports Philadelphia, 94.1 WIP
  • Thursday September 16 at 6:05pm ET on NBC Sports Philadelphia, 94.1 WIP

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