Blog Entry

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition

Posted on: May 2, 2010 10:30 pm
Edited on: May 3, 2010 2:11 pm
 
J.A. Happ remains on the disabled list, maybe for a few more weeks. Cole Hamels is tied for the National League lead in home runs allowed. Kyle Kendrick has a 7.61 ERA, and after waiting a couple of days to decide whether he'd make his next start, the Phillies basically said, "Yes he will, but only because we have nobody else."

So yes, the Phillies need Joe Blanton right now, as much as they've needed him at any time since that home run off Edwin Jackson in the 2008 World Series.

It's true that Blanton gave up five runs in five innings in his last minor league rehabilitation start, against Stephen Strasburg's Harrisburg Senators. But it's also true that in three career starts against the Cardinals -- the St. Louis Cardinals -- Blanton is 3-0 with a 1.71 ERA.

So with Blanton returning from the disabled list to face the Cardinals, is there any doubt which game should lead off this week's 3 to watch?

1. It's not just that Blanton is making his 2010 debut, after missing the first month of the season with a strained left oblique. It's also that right now these are the two best teams in the league, and they open a four-game series with Cardinals at Phillies, Monday night (7:10 EDT) at Citizens Bank Park . Somehow, the Cards and Phillies met only five times all last season (with the Phillies winning four of the games, and Blanton providing two of those wins). Somehow, the Cardinals lost three straight to the Dodgers last October, which kept them from meeting the Phillies in the playoffs. At least we get four games this week, although since Chris Carpenter pitched Sunday, we won't get a Carpenter-Roy Halladay matchup this week.

2. Jake Peavy had one winless month in his last 5 1/2 years with the Padres. He was winless with a 7.85 ERA in his first April with the White Sox. He thinks he discovered what's wrong, while watching video of a 2007 start against the Rays, and he thinks he's well on the way to solving the problem. Maybe that's true, although White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper told reporters Sunday, "You can talk about a whole lot of stuff -- mechanics, this and that, and the other things. But it's time to get people out." Peavy tries to do that in Royals at White Sox, Monday night (8:10 EDT) at U.S. Cellular Field . Also worth watching: With Juan Pierre off to a horrible start (.202 batting average, .272 on-base percentage) as the White Sox leadoff man, how loudly will the fans cheer Scott Podsednik, the leadoff man who the Sox allowed to leave (and who has a .390 on-base percentage for the Royals)?

3. It's not fair to say that Joel Pineiro took John Lackey's place in the Angels rotation, but it is fair to say that the one change the Angels made over the winter was to let Lackey sign as a free agent and to sign Pineiro to fill the vacant spot. Sure enough, Pineiro will be the Angels' starter in Lackey's first start against his former team, in Angels at Red Sox, Wednesday night (7:10 EDT) at Fenway Park . The last time the Angels were at Fenway, Lackey was among those celebrating Vladimir Guerrero's game-winning hit off Jonathan Papelbon (which scored Chone Figgins) to finish the Angels' first-round sweep. Guerrero and Figgins are gone, and Papelbon has saved Lackey's two wins.

Comments

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: February 20, 2012 1:42 pm
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition




Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 1:17 am
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition




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3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 8:25 pm
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition




Since: Nov 19, 2011
Posted on: December 4, 2011 1:43 am
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition




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Posted on: December 3, 2011 8:10 pm
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition

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Tomly
Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 12:24 pm
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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 13, 2011 1:35 am
 

3 to watch: The 'We need you' edition

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