Philadelphia Phillies (56-48) at Washington Nationals (46-58)
Cole Hamels, LHP (7-7, 3.48 ERA) vs. John Lannan, LHP (2-5, 5.76 ERA)
Time: 1:35, Nationals Park
Weather: Cloudy, 76 Degrees
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It couldn’t have happened any other way–big winning streak, top prospect comes up, big trade for an ace pitcher. Then losing two in a row to the last-place Nationals. Now it’s up to Cole Hamels, who is quietly having a phenomenal season, to stop the bleeding.
Opposing the Phillies will be lefty John Lannan, whom you might remember as the guy who broke Chase Utley’s wrist as a rookie in 2007. Lannan is a left-handed, more extreme version of Kyle Kendrick, a guy who’s hanging on as a fringe major league pitcher despite a startling inability to strike anyone out. Lannan’s fastball-slider-curve-change combination has only been good for 2.88 K/9 this season. That’s not a typo. 2.88 K/9, making for a K/BB ratio of 0.69.
This, combined with Hamels heading to the bump for Philly, gives La Furia Roja the best matchup of the series. The presence of lefty John Lannan on the hill means that Domonic Brown will not make the start this afternoon. Raul Ibanez, after what looked like a nasty incident with his wrist in the first inning of last night’s game, had x-rays taken, and according to Inquirer beat writer Matt Gelb, they were negative. He’ll make the start in left and bat second.
Lineup: Rollins 6, Ibanez 7, Polanco 5, Howard 3, Werth 8, Francisco 9, Ruiz 2, Valdez 4, Hamels 1
UPDATE: Got the wrong lineup off Twitter at first. My apologies. Here’s the correct one:
Rollins (SS), Polanco (3B), Werth (CF), Howard (1B), Francisco (LF), Brown (RF), Ruiz (C), Valdez (2B), Hamels (P)
Your Gameday Beer – Gordon Biersh Festbeer
This seasonal Oktoberfest brew comes from California, where our starter Cole Hamels hails from. FestBier emphasizes rich, malty undertones with a moderately hoppy finish. The maltiness is created by a combination of dark- roasted, Munich-style malt and Pilsner malt. Enjoy it while Cole dark-roasts the Nats for a sweep tonight. –by Pat