Monday, Joe Blanton vs. Javier Vazquez
Tuesday, Roy Halladay vs. Josh Johnson
Wednesday, Cliff Lee vs. Ricky Nolasco
*All games at 7:10
AVG - .254 (13th)
OBP - .329 (8th)
SLG - .397 (11th)
R - 152 (9th)
Hanley Ramirez and young slugger Mike Stanton were supposed to be the leaders of this offense, but have underperformed so far. Hanley is struggling mightily (.195/.554) and Stanton has just recently fully healed from a quad injury and is striking out at a high rate (33 K's in 30 G). Where these two have failed the Marlins, Gaby Sanchez has not, batting .328/.926 with 5 HR, 21 R, and 20 RBI while becoming a top-tier NL firstbaseman. Emilo
ERA - 3.41 (10th)
WHIP - 1.24 (8th)
BAA - .231 (5th)
Main setup man Clay Hensley just hit the DL, but the Marlins have plenty of other fish in the sea. Closer Leo Nunez has 11 saves and a 2.70 ERA. Lefty Mike Dunn has 2 wins, 4 holds, 16 K in 13.1 IP, and a 1.35 ERA. Lefty specialist Randy Choate is holding left-handed batters to a .118 average and has struck out 10 of the 17 he's faced (sorry Howard). Another Phillies castoff is doing stellar work for the Marlins, Brian Sanches has an impressive 1.72 ERA and 0.96 WHIP in 15.2 IP. On the starting side of things the Phils get lucky in opening the series with Vazquez (6.39 ERA, 1.81 WHIP) and better take advantage of it, because things get drastically more difficult after tonight. The premier pitching match-up of Halladay and Johnson is must see tv. Doc is the best pitcher in the game, in my opinion, but Johnson is no slouch himself (1.68 ERA, 0.85 WHIP). Finishing things off on Wednesday is the hard-nosed Nolasco who has a tidy 3.23 ERA and a spotless record (3-0).
Facing better competition means less wins for the Phightins (exhibit A- weekend series against Braves). The Phillies offense is pathetic 5-9 in the lineup, and the Fish will magnify that with their top-notch pitching staff. Phils eek out 1 win and hang their heads leaving Florida.