Philadelphia Phillies vs. Arizona Diamondbacks Series Preview
Diamondbacks Come Back Home After Sweeping Dodgers
The Arizona Diamondbacks just completed a three-game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers on the road, and will now come back home to start a four-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday.
The Diamondbacks' road trip did not start off well as they lost two of three games to the San Diego Padres, but they were able to sweep the series against a Dodgers team that is struggling to win games.
The Diamondbacks and Phillies each lost a pitcher that was an integral part of their team to injury this week. Arizona will be without their closer J.J. Putz for the foreseeable future, and Phillies may have lost Roy Halladay for the rest of the season due to shoulder surgery.
The probable pitchers for the upcoming series against the Phillies include Patrick Corbin, Ian Kennedy, Trevor Cahill and Brandon McCarthy. Arizona will face Philadelphia for the first time this season.
Arizona had success against the Dodgers because of some timely hitting they received from their offense, and the starting pitching was also stellar, as they only gave up seven runs in the series.
The Phillies played great in the series against the San Francisco Giants, but it was their starting pitching that stood out. This was somewhat of a surprise because their starters have struggled this season, as indicted by the 4.81 ERA from the rotation.
The bullpen for the Diamondbacks has a new look with Putz going on the DL, and Heath Bell will get the majority of save opportunities.
The following slideshow is a preview of what to expect in the Phillies vs. Diamondbacks series.
Chris is the Diamondbacks writer for RantSports.com.
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Pitching Match up No.1
Patrick Corbin has been dominant this season for Arizona, as indicated by his 1.80 ERA. He has not allowed more than two earned runs in any start this season and will look continue this trend against the Phillies.
Cole Hamels started the season off horribly by allowing 13 earned runs in his first two starts, but has only given up seven runs in last four starts.
Pitching Match up No.2
Ian Kennedy has not won a game since Opening Day for Arizona, and one of the reasons is that he is struggling to throw strikes. When Kennedy is pounding the strike zone with his fastball, he becomes a more effective pitcher.
Tyler Cloyd will be making his first start for the Phillies, and will temporarily occupy the spot in the rotation that belonged to Roy Halladay.
Pitching Match up No.3
Trevor Cahill has pitched very impressively in his last three starts, as he has just allowed three runs over his last 20 innings pitched. They key to his success is that he has been walking less batters and commanding his sinker better.
Cliff Lee will be one of the the pitchers in the Phillies rotation that will have to pick up the slack with the loss of Halladay. Lee pitched very well in his last start by only allowing two runs in eight innings of work.
Pitching Match up No.4
Brandon McCarthy was great in his last start, and the success was because he mixed the location of his pitches. Though he did not earn a victory, Arizona hopes he can build off the success he had.
Kyle Kendrick continues to impress this season, as he has been the best pitcher in the Phillies rotation. They will rely on him more as the the season progresses.
Key Diamondbacks Player No.1
Heath Bell will be very important for the Diamondbacks this season, as he will be expected to finish off games with J.J. Putz being unavailable because of an elbow injury.
Key Diamondbacks Player No.2
Paul Goldschmidt was the main reason that Arizona had a successful road trip. He was a one-man wrecking crew in the Dodgers series, as he hit 4 HRs and had 9 RBIs.
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