Phillies (22-23) v. St. Louis Cardinals (25-19)
Thursday, 8:15 - Joe Blanton v. Jake Westbrook
Friday, 8:15 - Cliff Lee v. Kyle Lohse
Saturday, 7:15 - Oh great, it's KK v. Jaime Garcia
Sunday, 2:15 - Roy Halladay v. Adam Wainwright
What the heck happened to Kyle Lohse? For 10 years he was a sub-.500 pitcher with a career 4.79 ERA. Then last year he dropped his ERA to a career low 3.39 over 30 starts and he's continued the success into 2012, posting a stellar 2.91 ERA and a 5-1 record.
Adam Wainwright went through Tommy John surgery last seen and struggled early in 2012. He has the worst ERA of any Cardinals starter (4.78), however, he's coming off of a 4-hitter against the Padres on Tuesday. And if you're thinking, "Yeah, but it's the Padres," just remember that he'll be facing a team that could start Hector Luna, Freddy Galvis and Mike Fontenot in the same game...
Pope Hopefuls Batting:
Runs - 231 (3rd)
Avg - .278 (2nd)
Slug - .457 (3rd)
Lance Berkman (.333-1-4) tore his ACL and is done for the year (career?) and Allen Craig (.373-5-19) and Jon Jay (.343 avg) are on the DL and won't play this series. However, this team is full of guys that can hit. Carlos Beltran (14 homers), Yadier Molina (.297), Rafael Furcal (.339), Matt Holliday (9 HR, 30 RBI), and David Freese (9 HR, 31 RBI) will lead the way with support from rookie Matt Adams (.286) and Skip Schumaker (.310).
Pope Hofefuls Pitching:
ERA - 3.54 (11th)
WHIP - 1.27 (12th)
BAA - .255 (20th)
Jason Motte has a 0.88 WHIP and eight saves while setup man Michell Boggs has a 10.3:1 K/BB ratio. After these two, the rest of the bullpen is entirely hittable.
Their Danny Sandoval:
Backup catcher Tony Cruz is only 4-30 with a .300 OPS.
Their Danys Baez:
Before being release a week ago, JC Romero had given up 9 runs and 14 hits over 8 innings. The currently weakest link in the Cardinals bullpen is Fernando Salas and his 5.52 ERA.
Magic Number Watch:
The Phillies magic number is trying to figure out what to do with its Facebook stock...
The KK game is a loss and I don't have much confidence in Halladay on Sunday. So, Phils take one and become further entrenched in the cellar.