Last night was just another sad example of 2012 Phillies baseball. It's almost guaranteed that Kendrick could have gone eight innings last night. He was at 89 pitches. 89 pitches, Charlie. Antonio Bastardo blew the game after surrendering five two-out runs in the eighth inning. The Braves got away with a win against the Phillies bullpen last night when they couldn't get to the starter. The Phillies fell 11 games under .500 for the first time since 2002. Tonight they'll try to figure out a way to win behind a pitcher who has a good history against the Braves. Joe Blanton (7-7, 4.85 ERA).
Joe Blanton has been a helluva rollercoaster-type pitcher. He can shutdown one night, but in his next start he can get lit up early. In his last start, on Sunday against the Marlins, Blanton tossed six innings of three-run ball, allowing six hits while striking out seven. Blanton took the loss after his offense failed to produce. The last time Blanton faced the Braves, way back on May 3rd, he tossed a three-hit complete game shutout, striking out six. It was Blanton's first career CGSO in a Phillies uniform and one of his finest starts in his career. In 60 lifetime innings against the Braves, Blanton is 2-4 with a 4.65 ERA.
On the hill for the Braves will be righthander Tommy Hanson (9-5, 3.70 ERA), who is coming off of a seven-inning outing loss against the Cubs. On Monday, Hanson allowed four earned runs on seven hits while striking out eight while taking the loss. Hanson has allowed atleast one home run in each of his last three starts, six in total. Hanson has also walked just four in that span while striking out eighteen. Back on May 2nd, Hanson was shelled for four earned runs on eight hits through 3 2/3 innings against the Phillies. He received the no-decision after Roy Halladay surrendered six runs in the fifth inning of that game. In his career, Hanson is 1-2 with a 2.93 ERA against the Phillies.
Ryan Howard is batting .500 this year after going 2-4 with a double and a single in his season debut. Leaving just three men on base last night, you can't blame Howard for losing or not helping the Phillies win. He was stranded on base twice himself, on second base in the second inning actually. It's going to take more than Ryan Howard and Chase Utley together to help this team even think about playoffs. There are too many problems that can't be fixed with pieces coming back from injury.
Putting Juan Pierre in the seven hole is not helping either. Pierre should be batting lead off with Victorino batting 7th and Rollins 2nd.
Tonight's lineup vs Atlanta:
- J-Roll SS
- Vic CF
- Chutts 2B
- Chooch C
- Pence RF
- Polly 3B
- Pierre LF
- JMJ 1B
- Blanton P.
TV: FOX ; Radio: 1210 WPHT, 94 WIP.
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