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Phillies go for another series win in Wednesday finale with Dbacks



Phillies fans will be crowding Ashburn Alley on Wednesday night for what will be the final home game at Citizens Bank Park for more than a week. (Matt Veasey/Phillies Nation)

For skipper Gabe Kapler and the Philadelphia Phillies (38-29) tonight’s game with the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks (35-33) is important for a number of reasons.

First, it would keep the Phillies at least even with the Braves at the top of the NL East Division standings. The Braves host the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon, leading into a key three-game series with the Phillies in Atlanta this coming weekend.

Second, it would give the Phillies yet another series victory. Doing whatever it takes to somehow win most of their series has been the club’s direction to the top of those standings thus far this season.

The Phillies have gone 13-5-3 in all series during this 2019 season coming into this Dbacks three-gamer. They are 8-2-1 in home series to this point, and haven’t lost one in South Philly since Milwaukee took three of four nearly a month ago.

After their weekend in Hotlanta the club will head to Washington for a series with the red-hot division rival Nationals for a four-game series to open play next week. These two series begin a huge stretch of 26 consecutive games against only NL East rivals, one that will last until beyond the mid-July MLB All-Star Game break.

This will mark the last time for Phillies fans to see their club in person at Citizens Bank Park for more than a week. A final chance for awhile to enjoy the great food choices out on Ashburn Alley, be entertained by the antics of the Phillie Phanatic, and enjoy the ringing of the giant Liberty Bell. One more chance to catch BP fly balls in the stands, and to dump the bodies of their beloved family members on the home team dugout roof.

Wait, what?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yka9v7sQqEI

WEDNESDAY STARTING LINEUPS

PHILLIES

  1. Cesar Hernandez 2B
  2. Jean Segura SS
  3. Jay Bruce LF
  4. Rhys Hoskins 1B
  5. J.T. Realmuto C
  6. Scott Kingery CF
  7. Nick Williams RF
  8. Maikel Franco 3B
  9. Zach Eflin P

(First day off for Bryce Harper)

DIAMONDBACKS

  1. Ketel Marte CF
  2. Ildemaro Vargas 2B
  3. David Peralta LF
  4. Adam Jones RF
  5. Eduardo Escobar 3B
  6. Christian Walker 1B
  7. Nick Ahmed SS
  8. Carson Kelly C
  9. Merrill Kelly P

 

SHIBE VINTAGE SPORTS STARTING PITCHING MATCHUP

PHILLIES: Zach Eflin, 6-5, 2.88 ERA, 1.194 WHIP, 68 hits over 72 IP across 12 starts with a 57/18 K:BB

DBACKS: Merrill Kelly, 6-6, 4.12 ERA, 1.359 WHIP, 76 hits over 74.1 IP across 13 starts with a 58/25 K:BB. Kelly is a 30-year old rookie right-hander who took an unusual path to the big-leagues. He was the Rays eighth round pick in the 2010 MLB Draft, was released by Tampa Bay in December 2014, and went to Korea. There he pitched four seasons with SK Wyverns of the KBO. Kelly signed as a free agent with the Dbacks in December, and made their starting rotation out of spring training.

PHILLIES NUGGETS PREGAME NOTES

  • The Phillies are 25-6 when they score first this season, 34-5 when scoring four or more runs, 34-2 when leading after six innings, and 24-3 when they outhit their opposition. They are also 33-13 when bashing at least one home run.
  • Six different players have received starting assignments in center field this season for the Phillies. Only one of those players, Scott Kingery, is currently active and healthy on the roster.
  • Eflin has been the Phillies most consistent starting pitcher this season. He missed a start with back spasms, but returned last Friday to hold the Cincinnati Reds to one earned run and four hits over 6.1 innings. That marked Eflin’s seventh Quality Start on the season, second only to the nine accumulated by Jake Arrieta.
  • Kelly has been a real find for Arizona. He has six Quality Starts, including his last two, and has pitched into or beyond the 7th inning in each of his last three outings.
  • The annual Phillies Phestival will take place beginning at 3:30 pm on Thursday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park, after which the team will depart for their weekend in Atlanta.  Since the Phillies adopted ALS in 1984 as their primary charity, over $18 million has been raised for patient care and services in the Greater Philadelphia area. Over the last 35 years, players and their wives and girlfriends, coaches, broadcasters, front office staff and day of game staff have come together to host this special event. Last year, more than $725,000 was raised at the annual autograph and auction party.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ve6uHb85Xo

INJURY REPORT

PHILLIES: Both outfielder Roman Quinn and relief pitcher Edubray Ramos are on rehab assignments and could return to the Phillies soon. Relievers Tommy Hunter and Pat Neshek were due to throw bullpen sessions over the last day or so, and will then be re-evaluated for a possible return. The other four relief pitchers and two positions players on the IL are not near a return.

DBACKS: Infielder Jake Lamb is on the 10-day IL with a left quad strain, is on a Triple-A rehab assignment, and hopes to return soon. There are a half-dozen other Arizona players on the IL, but none are close to a return.

 

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