Thursday, June 20, 2013

Mets - Phillies series preview









After a tough loss on Wednesday at the hands of the Nationals, the Phillies open up a 3 game set with the division rival New York Mets. So far this season the Phillies have had the Mets number, going 5-1 against them. Even though Wednesday's loss was a disappointment, the Phils should still hold their heads high after taking 2 of 3 against Washington. Closer Jonathan Papelbon blew 2 saves in 3 days against the Nats and is beginning to be a concern. A big storyline this weekend is will he rebound against the Mets?

Friday's game - Jeremy Hefner (1-6, 3.96 ERA) vs Cole Hamels (2-10, 4.40 ERA)

Cole Hamels lost another start last Sunday in Colorado. His record now sits at 2-10. He'll look to get back on track against Jeremy Hefner and the Mets. Saying that Hefner has struggled against the Phillies is an understatement. He's 1-2 with a 15.68 ERA against the Phillies in his career including earlier this year when the Phillies torched him for 5 runs in only 3 innings of work. The Mets have also hit Cole Hamels well, especially Davis Wright. Wright owns a .390 batting average against Hamels.

Saturday's game - Dillon Gee (5-7, 4.56 ERA) vs Jonathan Pettibone (3-3, 4.40 ERA)

After such a promising start to his major league career, Jonathan Pettibone has quickly fallen back to Earth. In his last 2 starts combined, he's given up 13 runs (10 earned) in 8 and 1/3 innings. He looks to get back in his groove Saturday against the Mets, whom he beat earlier this season. Gee has pitched well lately, but the Phils have hit him hard in his career so it should be an interesting matchup Saturday afternoon.

Sunday's game - Matt Harvey (6-1, 2.16 ERA) vs John Lannan (0-1, 5.49 ERA)

While Lannan pitched well in his return from the DL on Tuesday, he will need to be stellar to beat Matt Harvey on Sunday. The Mets' rookie has taken the league by storm in his superb season. He's already dominated the Phillies once this season when he went 7 strong innings on April 8. In that start he only allowed 1 run while striking out 9 Phillies batters.

Prediction

Cole pitches well on Friday and the offense scrapes together enough runs to give him the victory. Papelbon closes out a 5-3 win, but not before he makes things interesting in the 9th. On Saturday Pettibone doesn't pitch that well, but neither does Gee. The Phillies win it 7-5 after scoring late against the New York bullpen. The Phillies go for the sweep on Sunday but are shut down by Matt Harvey. I'm calling a complete game shutout for Harvey and a 4-0 win for the Mets. Still, the Phillies win the series and make it 2 series wins in a row against an NL East foe.

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