After using 16 pitchers between them in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series on Friday night, the Phillies and D-backs understand that what will likely determine the outcome of Game 5 is that their respective pitchers aces are better thrown and have the longest time. get out
Zack Wheeler and Zac Gallen, who met on Monday in Game 1 in Philadelphia, will be on the mound again for Game 5 on Saturday after the D-backs evened the series at two wins apiece with a return to Chase Field. .
Wheeler has certainly become Philadelphia’s ace in every sense of the word. In three postseason games this year, he has a 2.37 earned run average with 26 strikeouts and just one walk. Wheeler and the Rangers’ Nathan Eovaldi are the only pitchers to go six or more innings in three playoff outings.
But Gallen arguably impressed more during the regular season as Arizona’s undisputed ace.
When is the game?
Game 5 takes place at 8 pm ET (5 pm MT) on Saturday at Chase Field.
Who are the openers?
Lineup: LD Zack Wheeler
There is no one the Phillies want more on the mound in Game 5 than Wheeler, who allowed two runs in six innings in Game 1. Wheeler is 2-0 with a 2.37 earned run average in three starts. this postseason. In nine career outings between the playoffs and the World Series, he was 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA. It is the 15th-best ERA in the history of pitchers who have made at least nine postseason starts.
D-backs: LD Zac Gallen
Gallen started Game 1 of this series and allowed five runs (including three home runs) in five innings of work, but he’s someone the D-backs have full confidence in. In the regular season, he went 17-9 with a 3.47 ERA.
What are the lineups?
Phillies: Prior to Friday’s Game 4, 384 players had seen 150 or more pitches in a postseason from 2008 to 2023. Among them, none had seen fewer strikeout pitches. zone than Harper in 2023. Of the 158 pitches he has seen up to that point, only 48 have been in the strike zone (30.8%). Teams have the same strategy: Don’t let Harper get past them, no matter who is around him in the lineup. Because of that, the Phillies used the same offensive lineup they used with right-handed pitchers this postseason.
D-back: Lovullo made some changes to his lineup for Games 3 and 4, sitting Alek Thomas and counting Venezuelan catcher Gabriel Moreno in the order. Thomas, whose two-run homer in the eighth inning tied Game 4, was in the lineup for Game 5, with Pavin Smith as the designated hitter.
**How do the relievers line up after the starters?
**Phillies: That’s the million-dollar question after Craig Kimbrel was responsible for a pair of back-to-back losses. The Phillies will consider whether to continue using the veteran in emergency situations for the rest of the series, though it is also unlikely that he will be available to pitch for the third straight game in Game 5. Orion Kerkering, José Alvarado and Jeff Hoffman also pitched the last two games, so it’s unknown if they’ll be available Saturday.
D-back: Arizona completed a bullpen game in Game 4, and all of its top relievers pitched. However, Lovullo said after the game that he expects everyone to be available for Game 5. The D-backs may need fewer innings from their bullpen with Gallen on the mound.
Who is there and who is not?
**Phillies: Turner singled in Game 4. He had a hit in each of his first 10 games this postseason. He was caught trying to steal a base in the inning. He has been successful on all 34 of his steal attempts this season, including the postseason. … Schwarber hit his fourth home run of the series in Game 4. His 19 postseason home runs are the most in Major League history by a left-handed hitter; Reggie Jackson had 18. … The struggles experienced by Kimbrel and Kerkering cost the Phillies two games.
D-back: Moreno walked two and drove in two runs, one of which was decisive. Thomas hasn’t hit well in this series, but we’re including him because of his pinch-hit two-run homer in Game 4. Marte has been a consistent force for Arizona throughout the playoffs. The Dominican has hit in 13 consecutive postseason games. He is tied with Greg Luzinski for the second-longest consecutive starts in a postseason run; the longest, 15 games, belongs to Marquis Grissom.