Phillies playoff dates, times, opponent and potential pitching matchups

Phillies playoff dates, times, opponent and potential pitching matchups originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

The Phillies are headed to the playoffs for the first time in a decade and have their starting rotation lined up exactly how they want.

Zack Wheeler in Game 1. Aaron Nola in Game 2.

The first round of the postseason is a Best of Three series with all three games at the home park of the higher seed. The Phils are not guaranteed a home playoff game. They won't play again at Citizens Bank Park this calendar year unless they can win their first series against the Cardinals.

Here are some specifics on what lies ahead for the Phils:

Dates and times

Game 1: Friday, Oct. 7, 2:07 PM ET | ABC

Game 2: Saturday, Oct. 8, 8:37 PM ET | ESPN2

Game 3*: Sunday, Oct. 9, 8:37 PM ET | ESPN2

The Phils will have one day off between the end of the regular season and the beginning of their playoff series in St. Louis.

The NLDS begins October 11. Should the Phillies advance, they'd be guaranteed at least one off day between rounds, two if they end it early.

Potential pitching matchups

The Phillies will have Wheeler going in Game 1 and Nola going in Game 2 on regular rest.

Ranger Suarez will pitch in Game 3 if there is one.

St. Louis hasn't declared a playoff rotation yet and has numerous options. Adam Wainwright will start a game. Left-hander Jordan Montgomery likely will, too, especially with the presence of Kyle Schwarber and Bryce Harper.

Right-hander Miles Mikolas, a contact-based groundballer, had a 3.30 ERA this season in 199⅓ innings, but when things go south for him it can happen quickly and emphatically. Jack Flaherty is another option. He made only eight starts this season but has pitched well the last two. Lefty Jose Quintana is another choice.

The Cardinals would pull out all the stops, as teams do this time of year. Either team might pull a starting pitcher after three innings if he just doesn't have it and do its best to play matchups from there.

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