Phillies

Are Phillies' odds to win National League an overreaction by Vegas?

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Are Phillies' odds to win National League an overreaction by Vegas?

On opening day, the Phillies' odds to win the National League were 40/1.

A week before the trade deadline, they are 6/1, according to Bovada.

The Phils have come a long, long way since those final few days of March and the national perception of this team has changed completely. 

As of Thursday, the only two teams with shorter odds to win the NL pennant were the Dodgers (3/1) and Cubs (7/2). These odds were released after the Dodgers acquired Manny Machado.

It's interesting to see the Phillies so high on the list, even though they entered Sunday's doubleheader a dozen games over .500 and with the NL's second-best record. Vegas obviously expects the Phillies to add a piece or two before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

The other reason the Phils' odds are shorter than those of the Diamondbacks (15/2) and Brewers (8/1) is that the Phillies are favored to win the NL East. So even if teams like Arizona and Milwaukee have more talent or end up with a better record than the Phillies, those clubs would most likely be participating in the wild-card game. The Dodgers and Cubs are heavily favored to hold on to win their divisions.

The Phillies are narrowly favored to win the NL East. They are +155, while the Braves are +165 and the Nationals are +200. (This means that a $100 bet on the Phillies would win you $155.)

The Braves entered Sunday a half-game behind the Phillies. They've won two in a row after losing eight of 10. 

As for the Nationals, things just keep getting worse. Washington is a game under .500 at 48-49, and they've taken L's both on and off the field this weekend. There was the dugout confrontation between Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg on Friday, and then the news Sunday that All-Star closer Sean Doolittle is dealing with a stress reaction in his foot that will keep him out at least another few weeks.

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Phillies 7, Mets 5: Maikel Franco does it again on a short night for Gabe Kapler

Phillies 7, Mets 5: Maikel Franco does it again on a short night for Gabe Kapler

 

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Gabe Kapler tossed by Joe West in one of the quicker ejections you'll see

Gabe Kapler tossed by Joe West in one of the quicker ejections you'll see

#Umpshow.

Joe West had an extremely quick hook for Phillies manager Gabe Kapler in the bottom of the sixth inning Tuesday night. After the Phillies took a two-run lead with back-to-back homers from Maikel Franco and Brad Miller, Scott Kingery was hit by a pitch near his head.

West immediately warned both teams, and the Phillies were clearly miffed. Kapler and a few members of the coaching staff threw their arms up in the air in the dugout as if to ask why they were being warned/penalized for Wilmer Font hitting a batter when the Phillies hadn't gotten into the act themselves. Plus, Font's HBP succeeded two straight home runs, making it ... questionable.

West is well-known for quick hooks, odd calls. He has a reputation, fair or unfair, of too often making it about himself. Kapler was ejected after taking three steps out of the dugout.

There is some history between these two teams which likely had the entire umpiring crew on high alert entering the series. It was just two months ago that Rhys Hoskins slow-trotted around the bases after homering off Jacob Rhame, who had sailed two pitches over Hoskins' head the previous night.

That's twice in the Phillies' last four games that Kapler has been tossed. He was ejected Saturday against the Marlins, also after a play involving Kingery. The umpire ruled Kingery went around on a check swing when he was hit by a pitch.

The fans in the stands wearing Joe West jerseys sure got their money's worth.

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