The entire 2022 season will be on the line for the Atlanta Braves Saturday when they face the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 4 of the NLDS. The Braves fell behind early Friday in Game 3 and the Phillies cruised to a 9-1 win to a take 2-1 advantage in the best-of-five series.
The Braves elected to go with Spencer Strider over Charlie Morton for Game 3. Now it will be Morton on the mound for the most important game of the season. It has been an up and down season for Morton who had a 4.34 ERA and a 4.26 FIP in 172 innings this season. Morton still struck out plenty of batters posting a K-rate of over 28%, but allowed a career-high 28 home runs. Morton had a 5.47 ERA in five starts against the Phillies in 2022 and allowed 19 hits and 12 runs in 15 1/3 innings (three starts) at Citizens Bank Park.
“They seemed to have kind of fluctuated in their approaches and we saw a little bit of that at the end of the year, a lot of trying to put the ball in play, go the other way,” Morton said of the Phillies. “I’ve looked at the video. I’ve looked at the numbers and we’re working on a game plan trying to get something together. I think that’s kind of a tough approach that the team has, to pitch against, because they’re really seeming to stay inside themselves and just pass the baton. We’ll talk about the game plan and go from there.”
Following Game 3, the Phillies named Noah Syndergaard as their starter for Game 4 Saturday. Syndergaard pitched an inning of scoreless relief in Game 2 throwing 16 pitches while recording a walk and a strikeout. This will be his first start since October 1 in Washington.
If the Braves are going to come back in this series, then their offense is going to have to show some signs of life. Atlanta left eight more runners on the bases in Friday’s loss and was 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
Austin Riley and Dansby Swanson are a combined 3-for-24 in the series with one extra-base hit. Michael Harris has hit the ball hard at times in the series but is just 1-for-11 at the plate. Marcell Ozuna served as the DH in Games 2 & 3, but is 0-for-8 with four strikeouts.
NLCS Game 4
Atlanta Braves vs. Philadelphia Phillies (Series
Game Date/Time: Saturday, October 15, 2:07 p.m. ET
Location: Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia, PA
Radio: 680 AM / 93.7 FM The Fan