The Phils look to make it four in a row today. After two abysmal games against the Mets earlier in the week, they’ve been playing much better ball in their last few, especially in this Atlanta series, where they’ve looked like the team we’ve grown accustom to seeing in recent seasons. So far, they’ve had a late inning comeback anchored by a couple of dingers, which, coupled with shutdown relief pitching, resulted in a win on Friday.
Yesterday, they received a brilliant outing from Cliff Lee, and the bullpen once again dominated the Braves hitters to finish it off. It’s a formula that has worked well for the Phillies in the past, and one they’ll surely try to stick with going forward. At eight games back from the second wild card spot, chances are slim for the playoffs. But if they can continue to play the way they have so far against Atlanta, they’ll make it much easier on themselves.
On the bump is ace left-hander Cole Hamels, who is making the start after missing his last outing with a stomach bug. Hamels has fared pretty well against Atlanta so far this season, going 1-1 with a 2.25 ERA in three starts. He did have, however, have what was probably his worst start of the season in Atlanta last month, allowing five runs–three earned–over five innings and walking a career-high six. He has since thrown a shutout against the Bravos and should be his usual self today.
LINEUP: Rollins SS, Pierre LF, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Mayberry CF, Nix RF, Frandsen 3B Kratz C, Lee P
Your Gameday Beer: Flying Fish Farmhouse Summer Ale
Keep the end of summer weekend celebration rolling with this excellent summertime ale from Flying Fish. This golden light beer is brewed in New Jersey, and offers a smooth sip with a mild taste and a surprisingly creamy feel. It’s perfect for day two of barbecuing. -RD