It was a short week for Phillies baseball, but Chase Utley was All Star for the sixth time, nothing new happened for draft signings and the trade rumors continued.
ON THE PHIELD:
Utley did his thing in Minnesota as the National League’s starting second baseman. He hit a two-bagger (almost a home run), got hit by a pitch and scored a run.
The first series of the second half came against the National League East rival Atlanta Braves. Atlanta took two of three games from Philadelphia.
A.J. Burnett (6-9) struggled in the first game of the second half. He allowed six runs off ten hits in a loss against the Braves.
Grady Sizemore has been the team’s hottest hitter lately with a batting average of .417. He had multiple hits in every game versus Atlanta and is 10-24 since being called up on July 11th.
Cole Hamels (4-5) tossed a gem against Atlanta on Saturday night. He pitched seven strong innings and gave up one run while striking out nine in the win.
ON THE PHARM:
The Phillies did not make any noise before Friday’s draft pick signing deadline. Unless of course you count snubbing Joe Flacco’s brother for a spot in the organization. The latest signee from the draft was on July 3rd.
Aaron Nola, this year’s top draftee, fell to 1-3 on the season for Class A Advanced Clearwater. He tossed five innings Saturday night and gave up only two runs off five hits while striking out five. His ERA is now 3.80.
Triple-A Lehigh Valley’s Brad Lincoln threw a complete game in seven innings during a twin bill Saturday. He gave up two runs and struck out seven in the win. That brings his record to 5-5 with an ERA of 4.24.
ON THE MEND:
After two months out, southpaw Cliff Lee is set to return Monday for a start against the San Francisco Giants.
ON THE TRADE FRONT:
A.J. Burnett is drawing interest from the Pittsburgh Pirates as well as the Baltimore Orioles and as reported, the Phillies have engaged in talks with the American League East leaders. According to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer the Pirates scouted Burnett during his start on Friday night.
Cliff Lee may find himself on the trade block as the Phillies have said they would rather deal Lee over Hamels. Lee recently said, “whatever” amidst the trade talk.
ON THE WHOLE:
Phillies fans can expect the team to either be dubbed sellers or probable sellers as the trade deadline approaches. The team is now 11 games back in the NL East. This coming week features a four-game series against the Giants followed by a three-game series with the Diamondbacks.