The Miami Marlins are coming off a disappointing series against the Cincinnati Reds. The Marlins lost the three game series to the Reds and are now looking to bounce back against the Philadelphia Phillies.
The Phillies, on the other hand are coming off of losing two of three to the Pittsburgh Pirates
. This is going to be the Phillies home opener.
Lets take a look at what this NL East rivalry series has in store for us.
Miami Marlins (1-3) @ Philadelphia Phillies, April 9, 11-12, Games 5-7
NL East Standings
Stadium: Citizens Bank Ballpark
Five-year Run PF*: 1.02
Five-year HR PF*: 1.08
Left Field: 329 ft.
Center Field: 401
Right Field: 330
*Five-year regressed park factors provided by Patriot here
Projected Pitching Matchups
April 9: Anibal Sanchez vs. Cole Hamels
April 11: Josh Johnson vs. Roy Halladay
April 12: Mark Buehrle vs. Joe Blanton
ZiPS In-Season Projections
As we did with the series against the Cincinnati Reds and the St. Louis Cardinals, I spoke to a writer on the Phillies Fansided blog, That Balls Outta Here
. I spoke to the Editor for the site, Justin.
Ehsan: Do you think the Philadelphia Phillies will complete an extension with Hamels or is he likely headed to test the free agent market?
Justin: Had a thought today. What if the Phillies never score any runs ever again? My god that would be terrible. ”It’s only three games into the season!” my therapist told me. ”Why are you already filling my voicemail with sobbing?”
But, as usual, I can’t stop the dark thoughts. So here I am, assuming that all three of our top starting pitchers will grow disgusted with Philadelphia and seek out other options for their first or next championship ring. But that’s in the future! The dark, horrible future. Ruben Amaro has said he could knock out a deal with Hamels, Shane Victorino
, and Hunter Pence
, if he wants to, so I guess he’s ready to start a pissing contest because let’s be honest, what a lot of people don’t realize is that any one of those pitchers is pretty important to our success.
So yeah I think we should go ahead and lock him up now if we have any god damn sense.
Ehsan: Any status updates on Chase Utley and Ryan Howard? Does the team have a good idea of when they are going to return to the field?
Justin: According to our not at all cryptic and openly dishonest general manager, Chase will be back when the time is right and Ryan will return “…when the Angels win the pennant.” I’m pretty convinced he’s given up answering questions entirely and is just quoting Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s degenerate father from Angels in the Outfield,
Seriously though, he gave us some dates, but they seemed to be somewhat arbitrary and we can’t really be surprised if we’re hurting for a good while.
Ehsan: Do Phillies fans still see the Phillies as the runaway favorite for the NL East, or have the injuries scared them to believe there are still teams that can beat the Phillies?
Justin: If my tone hasn’t clearly illustrated the state of Phillies Nation, forgive me. As always, our faith is strong. At no point were the more logical of us considering this season to be the derailed freight train of victory, rumbling mercilessly through the major cities of the NL East.
Injuries are scary though. I mean, it’s a good thing no one’s realized this, but the Pirates are not very good. We probably shouldn’t have lost to them. But we did. Mainly because of issues from people playing in place of our starters. Who are out with injuries. Some people are probably putting two and two together and saying that it’s because of injuries that we lost those games. Well, they’re wrong. Because the bullpen is also not great. Also the offense predictably sputtered. Also injuries.
Ehsan: If you had to pick, Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, or Roy Halladay? Which pitcher gets the ball game 7 of the World Series.
Justin: That’s not a question. That’s a test. And if you don’t pass it, then Roy Halladay punches a giant snake through your bedroom window. Just kidding. He doesn’t care enough about you to want to teach you a lesson.
Ehsan: Ryan Madson obviously is out for the season, needing Tommy John Surgery. How shocked of this news were you? Do you think the Phillies had any idea and that is why they let him go?
Hey, I would love to theorize that the Phillies have some sort of magical genius powers that allow them to make a deal that gets them a terrific closer and not an injured one. They probably don’t. Jonathan Papelbon
is making $50 million over four years. On a payroll that can’t really expand much further and doesn’t have a truly effective offense. The joke may still be on us.
Head over to the That Balls Outta Here to see the Phillies preview of the series.
- This series featured two very impressive pitching match ups. The first game leads off with Cole Hamels against Anibal Sanchez. Both pitchers are better then the slot they have been given by their team for starting rotation spot.
- Hamels was actually moved down to fourth starter so he would be able to pitch the first home game for the Phillies. The team was unsure of how youngster Vance Worley would handle the opening day pressures.
- Game two is the game that all of baseball will have their eyes on. Roy Halladay against Josh Johnson is quite a treat. These two have faced off three times, with the Halladay no hitting the Marlins once. The Marlins have won the other two match ups.
- In the third game, the Marlins have the obvious pitching advantage. Mark Buehrle is a significantly better pitcher then Joe Blanton. The Marlins will need to take advantage of this game.
- The Phillies scored a grand total of 10 runs in 3 games against the Pirates. It will be interesting to see how they respond. They are not catching much of a break, as they have to face the Marlins three best pitchers.
- Will be interesting to see if the Marlins offense can stay in the groove that they found in Cincinnati.
- This series is critical to the Marlins in the early part of the season to send a message to the Phillies that the Marlins are contenders and they can beat the Phillies. The Fish have struggled against the Phills the last few seasons.
Just like last series, I have the Marlins taking 2 out of the 3 games in the series, dropping the middle game. Johnson is going to fall to 0-2, but it will not be because of a poor start.
Marlins players Josh Johnson, Ricky Nolasco, Randy Choate, and Giancarlo Stanton dressed in their best Easter attire.
To make your predictions for what will happen in the game or to answer any of my notes, just leave a comment, you can also vote on the poll here:
April 13-15: Houston Astros*
April 17-19: Chicago Cubs*
April 20-22 @Washington Nationals
*Get your tickets now from TiqIQ.
You can ‘Like’ Marlin Maniac by clicking here. You can follow Marlin Maniac on Twitter @MarlinManiac and you can follow Ehsan Kassim on Twitter at @ehsank24.