When: May 18-20
Where: Citizens Bank Park (Philadelphia, PA)
Friday: Cole Hamels (5-1, 2.28) vs Daniel Bard (3-4, 4.30)
Saturday: Joe Blanton (4-3, 2.96) vs Jon Lester (2-3, 3.71)
Sunday: Cliff Lee (0-1, 1.95) vs Josh Beckett (3-4, 4.97)
Friday, 7:05, CSN
Saturday, 7:15, FOX
Sunday, 1:35, PHL 17
All Games on 94.1 FM
Player to Watch – 1B/DH David Ortiz: What’s going to be interesting for Boston is the fact that they can not leave a hot David Ortiz out of the line up. With the DH rule erased in the National League park, Ortiz will have to play first base if the Sox want his bat in the line up. It’s hard to leave out a guy who is hitting .345 with eight home runs and 27 RBIs, all team highs.
Series Overview: Who would have thought that by the time these two perennial contenders would face in the middle of May that both would be in last place of their respective divisions?
The Phillies (20-19) and Red Sox (18-20) are currently in last place and looking to use this series to continue their ascension out of the cellar. The task will be harder for Boston, who is coming to Philadelphia against a team that has won five straight games.
Carlos Ruiz has been on an unworldly tear for the Phillies so far this season. He is hitting .363 with seven home runs, 27 RBIs and an incredible 1.024 OPS.
Chooch’s seven home runs are only second to Baltimore’s Matt Wieters among catchers; leading in the other two triple crown categories among the men of his position.
Juan Pierre is still reaching base every game, hitting .343 average and .388 OBP. Hunter Pence leads the team with nine homers and tied with Ruiz with 27 RBIs.
For Boston, Ortiz is having a phenomenal season (as highlighted above). Dustin Pedroia is right up there with him, hitting .313 with five home runs and 18 RBIs. Cody Ross has seven homer and 27 RBIs as well.
Tonight, Cole Hamels will look to expand on his team-best 5-1 record against Daniel Bard. Tomorrow, Joe Blanton and Jon Lester will pitch on FOX and Sunday will feature Cliff Lee and the controversial Josh Beckett.
The Phillies should very well win this series with how the offense has been clicking and how good their starting pitching is. The only concern is the bullpen, which features the perfect Jonathan Papelbon against his former team.