ATLANTA — Has anyone else experienced déjà vu?
“Winning the first game is always important, but I think the second game is also really important,” Phillies manager Rob Thomson said. “It’s a swing game and you can’t relax at all against this team because they’re good, they can attack, they can do a lot of good things. So we have to keep our heads down and work hard.”
In all best-of-five playoff series, the winner of Game 1 on the road has won 105 of 148 times (71 percent). In the current 2-2-1 Division Series format, teams that win Game 1 on the road advance to 30 of 42 games (again, 71%). Those numbers include last year’s Phillies.
During the 2022 NLDS, the Braves defeated Wheeler in Game 2 and then lost consecutive games in Philadelphia, ending their title defense early. Max Fried will counterattack Wheeler this time, hoping to turn the momentum in Atlanta’s favor after Sunday’s off day.
“We have to regroup now and come back and win on Monday, really,” Warriors manager Brian Snitker said. “We have a really good pitcher and I feel really good on the mound, but I don’t think we can dwell on this. I mean, we have to look forward to the next game.”
When does the game take place and how to watch it?
TBS is broadcasting Game 2 at Truist Park.
All series are available in the United States on MLB.TV and are subject to verification by participating pay TV providers. Games are available for instant viewing worldwide (except Canada). The complete game archive will be available approximately 90 minutes after the game ends.
Who are the starting pitchers?
Phillies: Zach Wheeler Knowing the Warriors, the Warriors know Wheeler.
“It’s a bit of a cat-and-mouse game, especially when you’re facing people multiple times,” he said. “I’ve met these guys many times over the years. Not just this season.”
Wheeler is 2-0 with a 3.32 ERA in three starts against Atlanta this season. Since joining the Phillies in 2020, he has started 14 games against the Braves and is 6-3 with a 2.46 ERA, including in the postseason.
Warrior: Max Fried Not concerned about the blister on his left index finger that developed during his last two regular-season starts. The left-hander completed five innings in an intrasquad game on Tuesday, four of them with a bandage on his finger. He left convinced that the blisters wouldn’t be a lingering problem.
The Braves veteran has made just 14 starts this season and has a 2.55 ERA. He missed most of April with a strained left hamstring and then spent three months on the injured list with a strained left forearm. In one start against the Phillies on September 12, Fried limited the Phillies to one run in five innings.
What is the starting lineup?
Philadelphians: Philadelphia used this lineup against Miami’s left-handed starters in both games of the NFC Wild Card Series, so Thomson elected to stick with the same group against Fried. Essentially, Christian Pache replaced Brandon Marsh in left field.
Brave ones: Atlanta made changes to the lineup with left-handed Ranger Suarez in Game 1, but Ozzie Albies will return to second tonight. Eddie Rosario, one of the Braves’ 2021 postseason heroes, is in the lineup facing a right-hander, with Travis d’Arnaud teaming up with Fried behind the plate . Here’s the Warriors’ lineup for Game 2:
How will the bullpen line up after the start?
Philadelphians: With an off day on Sunday and an off day on Tuesday coming up, everyone should be excited to play Game 2. Left-hander Jose Alvarado and right-hander Craig Kimbrel could be used interchangeably in the eighth and ninth inning, depending on where in Atlanta’s lineup they are. They were followed by right-handers Jeff Hoffman, Seranthony Domínguez and Orion Kerkering, and left-hander Gregory Soto (Gregory Soto) and Matt Strahm.
Brave ones: Atlanta’s bullpen should be fresh, as Spencer Steader pitched seven innings in Game 1. AJ Minter, Pierce Johnson and Joe Jimenez are the primary passers for closer Laiseel Iglesias. Minter and Brad Hand are the only left-handers, with Hand having success over the past month over Schwarber and Harper.
Philadelphians: Rhys Hoskins is on a 60-day IL after undergoing left ACL surgery in March. The Phillies said Hoskins has a chance to play in the postseason this year, but that won’t happen until the World Series. Even then, he will be limited to DH or pinch-hitter duties. Hoskins is currently in Clearwater, Florida, where he continues to rehab and face live pitching as part of Philadelphia’s standby group.
Who is hot and who is not?
Philadelphians: Stout drove in six runs in three postseason games, including a two-out single in the fourth inning against Strider in Game 1. A year ago, Stout had just three runs in 16 postseason games. Harper hit his first postseason homer in Game 1, hitting Strider’s first-pitch slider in the sixth inning with an exit velocity of 115.3 mph. Strider has never allowed a pitch faster than 111.8 mph in his career. Turner went 1-for-4 with two stolen bases in Game 1 and had five hits and stole four bags in three postseason games.
Brave ones: After Saturday’s game, it’s hard to say anyone on Atlanta’s roster is hot. But Olson (11 HR, 1.147 OPS), Acuña (11 HR, 1.111 OPS) and Ozuna (9 HR, 1.034 OPS) are the three hottest players in the league coming out of August. Braves receivers, on the other hand, had an OPS of .168 and an OPS of .559 after the All-Star break.
Is there anything else fans should know?
Saturday’s attendance of 43,689 was the largest in Truist Park history. The Braves have won NLDS Game 2 every year since 2019.