3. Phillies vs. Angels — Aug. 28-30
The Phillies have a tough test to close out August when they’re paid a visit by Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout’s Los Angeles Angels.
The Angels have played to mixed results this season, but they’ve been enjoying a winning brand of baseball since the MLB All-Star Game. While some thought they’d be sellers at the trade deadline, they wound up being buyers and are focused on competing for a playoff spot.
Trout is out with a hand fracture at the moment, but all signs point to a return by the end of the month.
The Phillies must avoid losing this series for a few reasons. For starters, they open September with back-to-back road series against the Milwaukee Brewers and San Diego Padres — two teams that are within four games of Philly.
Heading into either of those series after coming up short against the Angels would be dangerous. All it’d take is for the Brewers or Padres to get hot at the right time to potentially knock the Phillies out of the race.
Beating a team that boasts both Ohtani and Trout would also do wonders for Philly’s confidence. The former is all but certainly this year’s American League MVP while the latter is one of the best to ever swing a bat.
Overcoming the Angels would not only show that the Phillies can handle superstar power, but also give them a ton of momentum heading into the most important month of the regular season.
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