Phils/Bucs Rubber-Match Preview

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Philadelphia Phillies (73-51) at Pittsburgh Pirates (52-72)
J.A Happ (10-2, 2.59ERA) vs. Charlie Morton (3-6, 5.21 ERA)

The Phillies and Pirates will play the rubber-match game of the series tonight. Even though the Pirates are a last place team, they've kept pace with the Phillies during this series. The games have been close and down to the wire.

The Phillies will hand the ball to J.A Happ, who has the lowest ERA of any rookie since Hideo Nomo in 1995. He has been one of the most consistent starters, and isn't phased when runners reach base. Happ allowed one run in seven innings when he faced the Buccos in July. He limited them to four hits, and walked two.

Charlie Morton gave up two runs in 6.1 innings in his last outing, rebounding from a game in which he allowed ten runs in one inning. Morton faced the Phillies last season and gave up five runs in two innings. Shane Victorino homered off him. Victorino, the team's leading hitter, is batting just .222 in the last seven days.

The offense needs to provide Happ with run support, something they've lacked in the past two games. With the ninth inning troubles, it would be nice for the Phillies to get a comfortable lead, big enough so that it is a non-save situation.

Tonight's lineup: Rollins (SS)/ Victorino (CF)/ Utley (2B)/ Howard (1B)/ Werth (RF)/ Ibanez (LF)/ Feliz (3B)/ Bako (C) Happ (P).

Call of the Day: An exciting finish in an extra inning game in 1989 on Bob Dernier's inside the parker.

"Line drive. It is a fair ball down the left field line, going all the way to to
the corner! Here comes Thon into score. Lake being waved around. Mitchell can't
pick it up! Lake scores, here comes Dernier! The throw to the plate... safe! I
can't believe it! The Phillies have won 3-2 in the bottom half of the 12th
inning! Incredible! Mitchell could not pick the ball up down in the corner, it
kicked away from him. Dernier has circled the bases! Bedlam here at Veterans
Stadium, when all looked lost! The Phightin' came back and won, 3 to 2!"


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