Philadelphia Phillies (23-13) at Pittsburgh Pirates (16-21)
Kyle Kendrick, RHP (1-1, 5.89 ERA) vs.Charlie Morton, RHP (1-6, 9.19 ERA)
Time: 7:05, Citizens Bank Park
Weather: 30% Chance of Rain, 62
TV: Comcast SportsNet
Jimmy Rollins is back! After missing the last 30 games with a calf strain, he will bat 3rd in the order. Chase Utley will sit with flu-like symptoms, Greg Dobbs will jump in at 3rd base, while Placido Polanco moves to 2nd base. Carlos Ruiz also returns to the lineup this evening. Charlie Manuel said they’ll see how he feels after the game to determine is status going forward (that is, if he can play everyday as of now).
The Phillies sit four games up over the Nats and Marlins in the NL East. Before their much-anticipated series begins on Friday against Boston, the Phils have some business to tend to. The Pirates are in tonight, with Charlie Morton on the mound. His ERA is a stunning 9.19, and somehow he’s still starting. Yikes. The Flemington, NJ native has really regressed this season after an OK 2009 with PIT. In two career starts against the Phillies, he’s allowed seven earned over eight innings of work. Could be in for another long night.
Kyle Kendrick has been decent his last few outings, so he’ll look to build on that tonight as he gets the backing of the NL’s best offense. KK went six innings, giving up four earned against the Rockies last week. Two starts ago, he shut out the Cardinals over seven innings. He needs to keep the ball rolling until J.A. Happ returns, hopefully by early June.
Speaking of the sick offense which scored 23 runs over the weekend in Milwaukee, Carlos Ruiz
Tonight’s Lineup: Victorino (CF), Polanco (2B), Rollins (SS), Howard (1B), Werth (RF), Ibanez (LF), Dobbs (3B), Ruiz (C), Kendrick (P)
Your Gameday Beer – Iron City Beer
Iron City Beer resembles the Pirates in many ways. It’s cheap, not very good, and nearly went under recently. Not sure the Pirates were close to folding – Iron City was saved from Bankruptcy in 2007 – probably because the beer itself tastes like Iron. They’ve since moved out of Pittsburgh to Latrobe, where they used to make Rolling Rock. Not sure if this is an actual recommendation or not, but if you dare to mess with this stuff, make sure you’re off from work the next day.– By Pat