Philadelphia Phillies at Los Angeles Dodgers
Cole Hamels, LHP vs. Clayton Kershaw, LHP
Time: 8:07 p.m at Dodger Stadium
Weather: Clear, 69
Twitter: Phillies Nation
The National League Championship Series begins tonight. For the second consecutive year and the fifth time overall (tied for the MLB record) the Phillies and the Dodgers are the last remaining teams in the senior circuit.
Cole Hamels, fresh off paternity leave, will take to
the hill tonight for the Phillies. His last game was certainly not his best postseason performance. In an abbreviated start against the Rockies last week, he allowed four runs on four hits in five innings. On the other hand, he was lights out against the Dodgers during the regular season with a complete game shutout at Chavez Ravine. Dodger hitters are .228/.261/. 368 lifetime with 31 hits and 29 strikeouts in 136 combined at bats.
The matchup on paper favors Cole; after that though, the bullpen numbers are not as favorable – particularly for Scott Eyre and more recently Brad Lidge. One could surmise that the longer Cole pitches, the better chance the Phillies have.
On the flip side, we have Clayton Kershaw – another young gun. Don’t let his 8-8 record (0-2 against the Phils) this season fool you, his 2.79 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 7 homers in 171 games are the numbers to focus on tonight. This lefty is stingy with his fastball and nasty curve. He has a tendency to work the outside corner against lefties at the plate. We know this guy has good stuff but the question remains – can the 21-year old handle the pressure of the postseason and the Phillies lineup?
Tonight’s Lineup: Rollins (SS), Victorino (CF), Utley (2B), Howard (1B), Werth (RF), Ibanez (LF), Feliz (3B), Ruiz (C), Hamels (P).
Your Gameday Beer – Kenzinger
Tonight the Philadelphia Brewery brings you Kenzinger, named after the lovely corner of the city known as Kensington. The beer evokes many of the same feelings as the 19125. Its retro facade hides a classic beer taste – yet it won’t go down without a strong bitter bite. Have some perogies alongside it for dinner, then sit back and enjoy some NLCS for dessert. – By Brian