Atlanta Braves (86-64) at Philadelphia Phillies (88-61)
Brandon Beachy (0-0, – ERA) vs. Cole Hamels (11-10, 3.01 ERA)
Time: 7:05, Citizens Bank Park
Weather: Partly cloudy, 72
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You want a playoff atmosphere? Well, you got it my friend. Tonight the Bank will be rocking – rally towels and all. The Phillies enter with a three game lead over the Braves in the NL East with 12 games remaining, six against each other.
To add to the drama, the Braves scheduled starter, Jair Jurrjens, has been scratched due to injury. 24-year-old rookie Brandon Beachy will start in his place. This move may favor the Braves as the Phils have not done well against guys they have not seen before. Not to mention Jurrjens’ struggles lately. Beachy has spent most of this season in AA and went 2-0 with a 2.17 ERA in 8 games in AAA before being called up earlier this month. He has an impressive 5.29 K/BB ratio – but of course, he has yet to face major league hitting.
And the Phillies have plenty of that. Riding a seven-game winning streak, the Phils have won 11 of their last 12. They are hot at the right time; even if those wins came against the bottom-feeders of the division. Nonetheless the bats are connecting, especially those of Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez. Plus, Cole Hamels is tossing some of his best games of his career. He has given up just a single run in his last 31 1/3 innings and over his last 13 games is 5-3 with a stingy 1.79 ERA.
There is no doubt tonight’s game a big one. Where will you be watching?
Today’s lineup: Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Werth RF, Ibanez LF, Ruiz C, Valdez SS, Hamels P
Your gameday beer: Victory Lager
Pure and simple describes this offering from our friends at Victory. The well-balanced German-style lager satisfies the taste buds with roasted malts and flowery hops. It’s a nice substitute for the traditional American Lagers like Yuengling or Sam Adams. Lagers go great with anything, but I particularly prefer a good pepperoni pizza.