Series Preview: Twins

Phillies (34-30, 3rd in NL East) vs. Minnesota Twins (38-28, 1st in AL Central)

Where: Citizens Bank Park (Philly, PA)
Discussion: Liberty Bell Sports

Probable Pitchers
Friday: Joe Blanton (1-5, 7.28) vs. Nick Blackburn (6-3, 4.96)
Saturday: Cole Hamels (6-5, 3.74) vs. Kevin Slowey (7-4, 3.84)
Sunday: Roy Halladay (8-5, 2.36) vs. Carl Pavano (7-6, 3.92)

Broadcast Info
Friday, 7:05: CSN
Saturday, 4:10: FOX
Sunday, 1:35: MyPHL17
All Games on 1210 AM

Hot (last 3) – Jose Contreras: 0-0, 3.1 IP, 2 H, BB, 0 R, 3 K, amazing since beginning of May.
Not (last 3) – Joe Blanton: 0-2, 15 IP, 20 R, 18 ER, 5 HR, 10.80 ERA.

Player to Watch – Joe Mauer: He is the best player in the American League and arguably the best in baseball. He’s the most dynamic catcher in a long time to play the game. His power numbers are low (only two home runs and only 28 RBIs) and his .311 average is 15 points below his career average. He’s been in a fun his last 10 games, batting .273 and only driving in four runs but much like we’re waiting on Chase Utley to do, Mauer can bust out at any moment.

Series Overview: The Phillies took a huge series away from the Yankees… Like Mauer, the Twins have been struggling a bit as they’ve seen their lead in the division diminish to half a game to Detroit… The Phillies need to keep pace with Atlanta and New York in order to not fall further from first in the NL East… Jim Thome returns to Philly where he was loved like a son… Joe Blanton hasn’t gone further than seven innings yet this season and hasn’t allowed fewer than three runs in any of his starts. He will need a good start on Friday to set the tone for the Phillies this series… Cole Hamels has been Philadelphia’s most consistent pitcher this season thus far. He hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in his last eight starts… Roy Halladay versus Carl Pavano on Father’s Day may be the rubber match in this series as pops will not only be treated to a cool hat at the stadium but also a good pitching duel.

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