Losers of six in a row, the Phillies (22-42) finish up their road swing with a trip to Baltimore for the beginning of a four-game home-and-home series with the Orioles (31-31).
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Despite losing yesterday, the O’s have been playing great baseball, winning their previous 6 in a row. That stretch has helped them climb within 3 games of the AL East-leading Yankees. The Orioles remain very much in the thick of a division up for grabs.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Phils sit an even dozen games behind the 1st place New York Mets in what is currently a very weak division. The club has dropped 16 of their last 19 games in what has become a complete collapse.
Baltimore’s middle of the pack offense (12th in runs scored) is front-lined by centerfielder Adam Jones (.305/.344/.500, 10 HR, 33 RBI), DH Jimmy Paredes (.303/.330/.470, 6 HR, 28 RBI), and young star 3rd baseman Manny Machado (.286/.342/.483, 11 HR, 30 RBI, 8 SB).
Ranked dead last in runs scored; the Phillies’ offense is led by table-setting outfielder Ben Revere (.277/.316/.357, 16 RBI, 15 SB), a very hot rookie 3rd sacker Maikel Franco (.282/.325/.527, 6 HR, 16 RBI), and a rejuvenated power-threat in Ryan Howard (.236/.276/.467, 11 HR, 28 RBI). The Phils will have to select someone to act as a DH in the first two games.
Those first two games of this series take place in the beautiful Camden Yards facility, with dimensions that run 333, 400, and 318 feet to left, center, and right field, respectively. Citizens Bank Park is fairly similar in size, but is noticeably farther in right field where the foul pole sits at 330 feet.
Aaron Harang (4-7, 3.04 ERA) vs. Wei-Yin Chen (2-4, 3.21 ERA) – Once in the middle of an outstanding season, Harang looks to get back on track after putting up his 2 worst starts of the year. He’ll want to limit the long ball after giving up 4 of them in his last matchup. His opponent, Chen, has been steady all year long for the Orioles. He comes off an okay start (5 IP, 2 ER, 7 H, 1 BB, 5 SO) against Boston. Chen will attempt to continue that good season against a dead Phillies offense.
Jerome Williams (3-6, 5.71 ERA) vs. Chris Tillman (4-7, 5.68 ERA) – This matchup pits two pitchers in the midst of some very lackluster seasons. Williams has not really put up a very productive start in a long time. His most recent in Cincinnati was nothing to write home about (6 IP, 4 ER, 9 H, 1 BB, 3 SO). He’ll try to begin salvaging his season on Tuesday evening. Tillman has been a significant disappointment this year after putting up 2.93, 3.71, and 3.34 ERA’s in his last three seasons. Tillman looks to find vintage form when he toes the rubber this Tuesday.
Kevin Correia (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Ubaldo Jimenez (4-3, 3.19 ERA) – Correia is coming off a nice season debut (5.2 IP, 0 ER, 5 H, 1 BB, 4 SO) in the majors after recently signing with the Phillies. He’ll look to further prove himself as a productive cog in a rotation by tossing some solid innings. He’ll be opposed by Jimenez, who is back pitching at a high level this season. Jimenez stumbled a bit in his last outing (5 IP, 3 ER, 6 H, 2 BB, 6 SO), so he looks to bounce back against the struggling Phils.
Bud Norris (2-4, 8.29 ERA) vs. Sean O’Sullivan (1-5, 5.08 ERA)- O’Sullivan is yet another starter who has been mediocre for the Phils and is coming off a start in which he demonstrated just that (6 IP, 4 ER, 8 H, 4 BB, 1 SO). O’Sullivan is looking to limit his walks and put together a solid enough start to keep the Phillies in the game. After starting the season off with two terrible starts in his first three games, Norris has been decent for Baltimore. Like Jimenez, he’ll be trying to bounce back from a poor start (5.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 H, 0 BB, 5 SO) when he faces off against the Phillies.
Harang must regain form – Only one of the four starters scheduled to go for the Phillies is coming off a decent start and that is none other than Correia. It seems fairly unlikely that he will be able to repeat his last performance given that he wasn’t on a major league roster a week ago. The Phillies will need their very weak rotation to step-up and that begins with one of the guys who had been leading them all season; Harang. The Phillies need him to succeed, not only to play stopper, but also to show that he is still a worthwhile trade deadline pickup.
Timely Hitting – The Phillies were horrendous at timely hitting while in Pittsburgh this past weekend. They went 1-25 with runners in scoring position and left 25 on base over the weekend. The Phils are getting men on, but obviously are tensing up when it comes time to bring them in. In order to score runs and back up their poor pitching staff in this series, they will need to find a way to drive in their fellow teammates.
Game 1: Monday, 7:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210 FM, 94AM, 1610AM (Spanish Language)
Game 2: Tuesday, 7:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210 FM, 94AM, 1610AM (Spanish Language)
Game 3: Wednesday, 7:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210 FM, 94AM, 1610AM (Spanish Language)
Game 4: Thursday, 1:05 PM, TV: CSN, Radio: 1210 FM, 94AM, 1610AM (Spanish Language)
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE forecast for Camden Yards in Baltimore (next two games)
Showers and thunderstorms likely before 1am, then isolated showers between 1am and 4am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 75. West wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 4pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 90. West wind 7 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly before 7pm. Partly cloudy, with a low around 71. Northwest wind 9 to 13 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE forecast for Citizens Bank Park in South Philly (Weds/Thurs)
Mostly sunny, with a high near 85. North wind around 8 mph becoming east in the afternoon.
Showers likely, mainly after 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 67. Southeast wind 5 to 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New precipitation amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm before noon, then a chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 82. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.
A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
INJURIES / DISABLED LIST
|Garcia, Jason (P)||05/16||15-day DL||TBD||Right shoulder tendinitis||Placed on 15-day DL on May 13 retroactive to May 11.|
|Gausman, Kevin (P)||06/11||15-day DL||Possibly mid-June||Right shoulder tendinitis||Sent on Double-A rehab assignment June 11.|
|Gonzalez, Miguel (P)||06/11||15-day DL||TBD||Right groin strain||Placed on 15-day DL on June 11 retroactive to June 10.|
|Schoop, Jonathan (2B)||06/12||15-day DL||Possibly July||Grade 1 PCL tear, MCL sprain||Scheduled to work out with team week of June 15; could begin Double-A rehab assignment June 19.|
|Wright, Wesley (P)||06/14||60-day DL||Possibly mid-June||Trapezius strain||Took batting practice, ran, fielded grounders April 29; transferred to 60-day DL on May 24.|
|Billingsley, Chad (P)||06/14||15-day DL||Possibly July||Grade 2 right lat strain||Threw from 75 feet June 2; placed on 15-day DL on May 18 retroactive to May 16.|
|Hollands, Mario (P)||04/20||Out for Season||2016||Recovering from April 2015 Tommy John surgery||Underwent Tommy John surgery April 8.|
|Lee, Cliff (P)||04/05||60-day DL||Possibly 2015||Left common flexor tendon tear||Shut down from throwing, placed on 60-day DL on March 16.|
|Pettibone, Jonathan (P)||05/09||60-day DL||TBD||Recovering from June 2014 right elbow surgery||Transferred to 60-day DL on April 28.|