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Series Preview: Milwaukee Brewers @ Philadelphia Phillies

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The Brewers roll into Philly for four games against a team that may as well be themselves

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Kansas City Royals Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

After their first series loss in almost three weeks, the Brewers will look to rebound as their 10-game road trip continues with a stop in Philadelphia against the new-look Phillies.

Of course, the biggest new face for the Brotherly Love Nine is Bryce Harper, who signed a 13-year, $330 million contract in the offseason. Like his last year in Washington, the batting average is low with pitchers not giving him a ton to hit, but he’s still managed an .826 OPS to this point, and his 1.2 fWAR is more than Lorenzo Cain and Ryan Braun combined.

He’s not the only addition to a lineup that certainly looks intimidating on paper. Old friend Jean Segura is hitting .306/.349/.455 in his role as the team’s new #2 hitter, Andrew McCutchen has a .370 OBP in a leadoff role, and J.T. Realmuto is hitting .269/.331/.418 behind the plate. Those guys join Rhys Hoskins, who’s proving himself to be one of the biggest power threats in the National League, coming into this series hitting .286/.415/.600 with 11 home runs and 9 doubles in 140 at-bats.

Overall, though, the Phillies and Brewers have been almost exact equals to this point in the season. Offensively, the Phillies have scored 202 runs to the Brewers’ 199. They’ve hit .246/.334/.413 as a team, while the Brewers have hit .242/.323/.427. The Phillies have a .321 wOBA and 99 wRC+, the Brewers have a .320 wOBA and 98 wRC+. Phillies batters have compiled 5.8 fWAR, and the Brewers have compliled 6.2 fWAR.

It’s much of the same on the pitching side, where the Phillies have a slightly better team ERA and FIP (3.78/4.30) than the Brewers (4.34/4.50), but Brewers pitchers have slightly more fWAR (3.1) than the Phillies (3.0).

This could be a fun/incredibly stressful week.

Probable Pitchers

Monday, May 13th - 6:05 p.m. CDT

Freddy Peralta vs. Aaron Nola

Nola is working himself out of an early-season hole, but has allowed just 1 earned run in each of his past three starts, covering 6.2, 5.2, and 6 innings and striking out 17 batters in that time.

Tuesday, May 14th - 6:05 p.m. CDT

Brandon Woodruff vs. Jerad Eickhoff

Eickhoff has only allowed 5 earned runs in his first 30 innings this season, striking out 31 batters in that time. He’s allowed 0 earned runs in 2 of his past 3 starts, including shutting out the Cardinals’ lineup over 8 innings in his last start and not allowing a baserunner to second base until that final inning.

Wednesday, May 15th - 6:05 p.m. CDT

Gio Gonzalez vs. Jake Arrieta

Arrieta has hit a bit of a rough patch in his past few starts, allowing 11 earned runs in his past 16 innings. That includes giving up 3 home runs in his last start against the Kansas City Royals.

Thursday, May 16th - 12:05 p.m. CDT

Zach Davies vs. Zach Eflin

Elfin may not strike many guys out -- just 38 in 51 innings -- but his efficiency has allowed him to work deeper into games than most this year. He has 2 complete games in his last 3 starts, including a 4-hit shutout against the Royals in his last start. He’s walked a grand total of 7 batters in his 8 starts, and almost half of those came in a single outing.

Player to Watch

Hoskins has taken advantage of hitting behind Harper, with a 1.015 OPS and 164 OPS+ that ranks in the Top 10 in the majors. Half of his 40 hits have gone for extra bases. He also has some history of doing damage against the Brewers, hiting 3 home runs in 5 games against them last year.

Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference and Fangraphs