The Phillies and Cardinals combined for nineteen runs on 33 hits in last night’s wild game. Eleven of the 33 hits were for extra bases, and the starting pitchers surrendered a combined thirteen earned runs.
Expect nothing like that tonight, as two pitchers–Cliff Lee and Kyle Lohse–will take the mound tonight with ERA’s under three. Lee has been exceptionally great away from home, as he’s only given up one earned run in 16 innings away from Citizens Bank Park, along with a very low .170 AVG against.
He’s also been pretty darn good against this current crop of Cardinals hitters, as collectively they’ve only posted a .230 average against him. The best hitter against Lee would be Rafael Furcal, as he’s 4-10 against the Phillies lefty with a triple, a home run, and 2 RBI. The worst would be Carlos Beltran, who is 2-12 against Lee, although both hits were doubles. Interestingly, Cardinals pitcher Kyle Lohse has a double off Lee in three career PAs against him.
As for Lohse’s pitching, he’s having the best year of his career so far. His 2012 ERA would be his career lowest, as would his strikeout rate and K/BB ratio. He’s been one of the better pitchers in the NL this year, and has decent numbers against the Phillies in his career. He’s posted a 3.43 ERA in ten starts against them, and has a .286 AVG against to the current group of Phillies hitters. Hunter Pence has a .318 average against him, Placido Polanco has a .333 average against him, and Ty Wiggingon, who will get the start tonight at first base, has a .533 average against him over his career. Tonight will be nothing like last night’s game in terms of offensive output, but will surely deliver the same level of excitement on the pitching side of things.
Lineup: Rollins SS, Pierre LF, Pence RF, Ruiz C, Victorino CF, Wigginton 1B, Polanco 3B, Galvis 2B, Lee P
GAMEDAY BEER: Busch Light
When the Phillies are in St. Louis [or hosting the Cardinals], we always go for the smooth, crisp, cheap taste of Busch beer. Tonight, we’ll go light for you, to ease you back into it. They don’t call it “easy drinkin’ for nothin’. This is an underage drinkers dream out in the sticks. Many a time you’ll find empty cans scattered in a wooded area from the local punks. It’s still $15 for a 30 pack, if I’m not mistaken. But really, Busch won’t kill your taste buds, either. It’s not the worst light beer ever invented, but it’s also far from the best. –By Pat