Philadelphia Phillies (94-50) at Houston Astros (50-97)
Cole Hamels (14-7, 2.60) vs. J.A Happ (5-15, 5.77)
The lowly Astros took the first game of the series as Roy Oswalt struggled against his former club. Brett Myers was able to shut down his former team on Monday night. Another familiar face will take the hill for the ‘Stros on Tuesday.
J.A Happ will make his second career start against Philadelphia. In that outing, he allowed two runs over 6 1/3.
It was only two years ago when Happ went 12-4 with a 2.93 ERA, helping his team make it to the World Series. Since being traded to the Astros, Happ hasn’t been the same. Because of his struggles, Happ was sent down to the minor leagues. Since being recalled, Happ has a 2.50 in three starts. However, his ERA still stands close to 6.
Cole Hamels will oppose his former teammate. The lefty hasn’t shown any signs of a setback after his recent shoulder injury. Since coming off the disabled list, Hamels has a 2.45 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 22 innings. With Lee and Halladay in the rotation, Hamels shines away from the spotlight, but he is having an excellent year. His 2.60 ERA ranks fifth in the league and his 0.95 WHIP is the best in the National League.
The magic number is five, but the Phillies can clinch a playoff spot with a win or a St. Louis loss. With the way Hamels has been pitching lately, there is a good chance the Phillies could clinch that postseason berth tonight.
Your Gameday Beer – Michelob
Michelob Lager is brewed here in America by In-Bev’s Anheuser-Busch though it is named after a small town in a region of the Czech Republic known for its hops. That’s pretty much where the story begins and ends. As a pretty basic beer, it has a thin and watery consistency and flavor. There are hints of corn, maybe even citrus, but the bitter and sweet tastes are balanced. Have it with your favorite style of fried chicken. – By Brian