After sweeping the best team in baseball in an all around impressive fashion, the Phillies start a crucial three game series with the New York Mets on Tuesday. The Mets have dominated the Phillies this season, going 8-4 in their season series, and 5-1 on the Phillies home turf at Citizens Bank Ballpark. 9.5 games out, the Phillies need to not focus on the margin behind in the Wild Card, but on just continuing to win the games in front of them. A sweep of the Mets would be great, but at least taking 2 of 3 is necessary for the Phillies to carry the momentum they gained this past weekend forward. Here’s a look at the matchups for the series.
– Tuesday: 7:05 Vance Worley (6-9 4.06 ERA) vs. Chris Young(3-7 4.44 ERA)
– This will be a good test for the Phillies, as Chris Young has looked like the San Diego version against them this season. Young is 1-1 against the Phils in 3 starts, but sports a 1.86 ERA. On the other side, Vance Worley has had a roller coaster season, and the Phillies will need him to be better than he has of late. Worley’s last three starts he has an ERA of 5.63. Overall, I’d give the advantage in this game to the Mets, given the Phillies struggles against the soft throwing , movement driven Chris Young. As we have seen though, the key catalyst is always Jimmy Rollins. Over the past 4 wins, Rollins is 6-12. His numbers lifetime against Young lifetime though are 2-15. This is the key matchup to watch, and it may be a huge deciding factor in what happens in this game. I say Jimmy has big game, he always does against the Mets.
Prediction: Phillies win: 6-4.
Wednesday- 7:05 Cole Hamels (14-6 2.99 ERA) vs. Matt Harvey(2-3 2.75 ERA)
With the way Cole Hamels has been pitching of late, everytime he is on the mound the Phillies expect to win. Pitching for the Mets is an interesting name though, hard throwing strikeout machine prospect Matt Harvey. Hard to know what the Phillies will do against Harvey, but with Hamels on the mound I give the Phillies a slight edge. Prediction: Phillies win: 3-1.
Thursday- 1:05 Kyle Kendrick(7-9 4.12 ERA) vs. Jonanthon Niese(10-7 3.51 ERA)
Kyle Kendrick has recently looked more like Greg Maddux of late, changing speeds, throwing strikes, and working his change up and cutter for alot of success. Jonathon Niese is also having a solid season, and could be just what the doctored ordered for the Mets in what could be the Phillies chance to sweep. Prediction: Kyle Kendrick finally lands on earth and the Phillies struggle against Niese. Mets win: 7-3.
Looking at the matchups, this series should be a win for the Phillies. If the bullpen can continue its’ stable state from this past weekend, it leaves the Phils in good shape. Another key will be Jimmy Rollins. When Jimmy goes so do the Phillies, and if he can keep reaching base this series , we should see the Phils continue their improbable run.