Phillies open series with Diamondbacks looking to build cushion in division

After a hot month of May, Cesar Hernandez is slumping. (Ian D’Andrea)

After failing to finish a sweep of the Cincinnati Reds Sunday, the Philadelphia Phillies lead in the National League East over the Atlanta Braves has dwindled to just one game.

The Phillies will travel to Atlanta in a crucial series this upcoming weekend, but before that, they’ll host the somewhat surprising Arizona Diamondbacks for a three-game series.

Given that the Phillies will miss out on both Zack Grienke and Robbie Ray in this series, it’s seemingly a good time for them to build a bit of a cushion in the National League East.

Following a weekend series where Phillies starting pitching allowed just one home run, Jerad Eickhoff will get the ball for the Phillies Monday night. Eickhoff didn’t allow a home run in his first four starts of 2019, but has allowed 2.2 home runs per start in the five starts he’s made since.

With seven relievers currently on the injured list, it would behoove Eickhoff to keep the ball in the park and give the Phillies at least six innings Monday night (obvious, I know).

Here’s everything else you need to know ahead of the Phillies-Diamondbacks Monday evening tilt:

Phillies Lineup 

  1. Cesar Hernandez, second base
  2. Bryce Harper, right field
  3. Jean Segura, shortstop
  4. Rhys Hoskins, first base
  5. J.T. Realmuto, catcher
  6. Jay Bruce, left field
  7. Scott Kingery, center field
  8. Maikel Franco, third base
  9. Jerad Eickhoff, pitcher

Opposing Lineup

  1. Jarrod Dyson, center field
  2. Ketel Marte, shortstop
  3. David Peralta, left field
  4. Adam Jones, right field
  5. Eduardo Escobar, third base
  6. Christian Walker, first base
  7. Alex Avila, catcher
  8. Ildemaro Vargas, second base
  9. Taylor Clarke, pitcher

Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Matchup

  • Taylor Clarke (1-2, 4.43 ERA and 4.31 FIP) vs. Jerad Eickhoff (3-3, 4.14 ERA and 4.95 FIP)
  • Clarke’s fastball averages 93.2 mph and he uses it just over 41 percent of the time.
  • Eickhoff has a 4.02 ERA in 31.1 innings at Citizens Bank Park in 2019.

Pregame Phillies Nuggets

  1. Following the worst season of his career a year ago, Adam Jones has revived his career with the Diamondbacks. The 33-year-old outfielder, who is making just $3 million in 2019, is hitting .276 with 12 home runs and 37 RBIs this season.
  2. Jean Segura led the National League in hits in 2016, the lone season that he spent with the Arizona Diamondbacks. While playing primarily at second base, Segura slashed .319/.368/.499 with 20 home runs, 64 RBIs and a 5.0 fWAR. After the season, he was dealt to the Seattle Mariners along with Mitch Haniger and Zac Curtis in a megadeal that netted the Diamondbacks Ketel Marte and Taijuan Walker.
  3. Ketel Marte plays in the super-utility role for the Diamondbacks, and much like Scott Kingery in 2019, he’s found offensive success regardless of where he’s played defensively. The 25-year-old is slashing .268/.320/.513 with 15 home runs, 45 RBIs and an .834 OPS.
  4. Rhys Hoskins has just four hits in 26 at-bats in June. He hasn’t homered since May 25.
  5. The Phillies reportedly had interest in Eduardo Escobar last summer, but the Diamondbacks ultimately landed him in a trade from the Minnesota Twins. After signing a new three-year deal with the Diamondbacks, the 30-year-old is performing even better in 2019 than he did in a career-year in 2018, as he already has 15 home runs, 49 RBIs and a 1.9 fWAR.

Programming Information

  • Citizens Bank Park
  • 7:05 p.m. ET
  • NBC Sports Philadelphia 
  • SportsRadio 94 WIP


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