|PHILADELPHIA ( VELASQUEZ )|
PITTSBURGH ( NOVA )
|905||PHILADELPHIA||+125||Ov 8.5,-110||+110||Ov 8.5,+110|
|906||PITTSBURGH||-135||Un 8.5,-110||-120||Un 8.5,-130|
|vs Right-handed Starters||11-18||-4.8||17-11||4.6||0.259||0.322||0.412||0.734||5.0||0.265||0.330||0.435||0.765|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-1.9||4-2||4.0||0.251||0.302||0.400||0.702||5.6||0.281||0.352||0.469||0.821|
|vs Right-handed Starters||12-15||-1.5||10-14||3.8||0.231||0.300||0.361||0.661||4.1||0.246||0.297||0.405||0.702|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+1.8||4-2||5.1||0.233||0.309||0.381||0.691||5.4||0.283||0.343||0.462||0.805|
|5/13/2017||PIVETTA(R)||@ WASHINGTON||ROARK(R)||4-6||L||150||8.5 ev||O||8||8||0||10||7||0|
|5/14/2017||HELLICKSON(R)||@ WASHINGTON||GONZALEZ(L)||4-3||W||200||7.5 ov||U||10||7||1||9||7||2|
|5/14/2017||VELASQUEZ(R)||@ WASHINGTON||SCHERZER(R)||5-6||L||170||9 ov||O||10||7||1||8||6||0|
|5/16/2017||EICKHOFF(R)||@ TEXAS||DARVISH(R)||1-5||L||170||8.5 ov||U||4||5||2||8||6||1|
|5/17/2017||EFLIN(R)||@ TEXAS||CASHNER(R)||3-9||L||120||10.5 un||O||9||4||1||17||10||0|
|5/18/2017||PIVETTA(R)||@ TEXAS||PEREZ(L)||4-8||L||130||10 ov||O||8||4||0||9||7||0|
|5/19/2017||HELLICKSON(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||WILLIAMS(R)||7-2||W||110||9 ev||P||10||4||1||3||3||1|
|5/20/2017||VELASQUEZ(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||NOVA(R)|| |
|5/21/2017||NOLA(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||KUHL(R)|| |
|5/27/2017|| ||CINCINNATI|| || |
|5/8/2017||WILLIAMS(R)||@ LA DODGERS||WOOD(L)||1-12||L||190||8 ev||O||5||6||1||15||7||1|
|5/9/2017||NOVA(R)||@ LA DODGERS||URIAS(L)||3-4||L||175||7.5 un||U||4||2||0||13||12||1|
|5/10/2017||KUHL(R)||@ LA DODGERS||MAEDA(R)||2-5||L||187||7.5 un||U||5||3||0||8||4||0|
|5/11/2017||COLE(R)||@ ARIZONA||GREINKE(R)||1-2||L||110||8.5 un||U||1||0||0||7||5||0|
|5/12/2017||GLASNOW(R)||@ ARIZONA||CORBIN(L)||4-11||L||125||10 ov||O||6||5||0||16||8||0|
|5/13/2017||WILLIAMS(R)||@ ARIZONA||WALKER(R)||4-3||W||135||10.5 ov||U||9||8||0||8||7||2|
|5/14/2017||NOVA(R)||@ ARIZONA||RAY(L)||6-4||W||140||9 un||O||9||10||1||14||15||1|
|5/22/2017||COLE(R)||@ ATLANTA||FOLTYNEWICZ(R)|| |
|5/23/2017||GLASNOW(R)||@ ATLANTA||TEHERAN(R)|| |
|5/24/2017||WILLIAMS(R)||@ ATLANTA||DICKEY(R)|| |
|5/25/2017||NOVA(R)||@ ATLANTA||COLON(R)|| |
|5/26/2017||KUHL(R)||NY METS||MILONE(L)|| |
|5/27/2017|| ||NY METS|| || |
|PHILADELPHIA: 2016: 71-91, fourth place
Manager: Pete Mackanin (third season)
Who's new? LF Howie Kendrick, RF Michael Saunders, C Ryan Hanigan, OF Chris Coghlan, RHP Clay Buchholz, RHP Joaquin Benoit
Who's gone? C A.J. Ellis, 1B Ryan Howard, INF Andres Blanco, OF Peter Bourjos, RHP Charlie Morton, RHP David Hernandez
Projected lineup: 2B Cesar Hernandez (.294, 6 HR, 39 RBI, 17 SB), LF Howie Kendrick (.255, 8, 40, 10 with Dodgers), CF Odubel Herrera (.286, 15, 49, 25), 3B Maikel Franco (.255, 25, 88), RF Michael Saunders (.253, 24, 57 with Blue Jays), 1B Tommy Joseph (.257, 21, 47), C Cameron Rupp (.252, 16, 54), SS Freddy Galvis (.241, 3, 20, 17 SB)
Rotation: RH Jeremy Hellickson (11-14, 3.65 ERA), RH Aaron Nola (6-9, 4.78), RH Clay Buchholz (8-10, 4.78 with Red Sox), RH Vince Velasquez (8-6, 4.12), Jerad Eickhoff (11-14, 3.65)
Key relievers: Jeanmar Gomez (3-5, 4.85, 37/43 SV), Joaquin Benoit (2-0, 0.38 with Blue Jays), Hector Neris (4-4, 2.58), Pat Neshek (2-2, 3.06 with Astros), Edubray Ramos (1-3, 3.83)
Hot spots: Shortstop and closer. Philadelphia is waiting for the arrival of J.P. Crawford, the marquee name in the farm system. Crawford struggled in his first exposure to Triple-A last year, batting .250 with seven home runs in 123 games. In the meantime shortstop belongs to Galvis, who had an MLB-worst .274 on-base percentage last season. Crawford will get a chance once he's deemed ready. Gomez had a 19.13 ERA last September, possibly opening the door for Ramos, Neris or newcomer Benoit to seize the closer's job in spring training.
Outlook: On the long road back to respectability, the Phillies appear closer to the end than the beginning. Young starters Nola, Velasquez and Eickhoff showed flashes of brilliance last year. So did center fielder Herrera, who was rewarded with a five-year contract extension. He's the only player on the roster with a guaranteed contract beyond this year. That points to 2017 as a major transition year with prospects and veterans auditioning for jobs in 2018 and beyond, when the Phillies can be active in free agency.
|PITTSBURGH: 2016: 78-83, third place
Manager: Clint Hurdle (seventh season)
Who's new? RHP Daniel Hudson, IF Phil Gosselin
Who's gone? IF Sean Rodriguez, OF Matt Joyce, SP Jeff Locke, SP Ryan Vogelsong, RP Neftali Feliz, C Eric Fryer
Projected lineup: 2B Josh Harrison (.283, 4 HR, 59 RBI, 19 SB), 1B Josh Bell (.273, 3, 19), RF Andrew McCutchen (.256, 24, 79), CF Starling Marte (.311, 9, 46, 47 SB), LF Gregory Polanco (.258, 22, 86), 3B Jung-ho Kang (.255, 21, 62), C Francisco Cervelli (.264, 1, 33), SS Jordy Mercer (.256, 11, 59)
Rotation: RH Gerrit Cole (7-10, 3.88 ERA), RH Ivan Nova (12-8, 4.17 for Yankees and Pirates), RH Jameson Taillon (5-4, 3.38), RH Chad Kuhl (5-4, 4.20), RH Drew Hutchison (1-0, 5.25 with Blue Jays and Pirates) or Steven Brault (0-3, 4.86) or Trevor Williams (1-1, 7.82) or Tyler Glasnow (0-2, 4.24)
Key relievers: LH Tony Watson (2-5, 3.06, 15/20 SV), RH Daniel Hudson (3-2, 5.22 with Diamondbacks), LH Felipe Rivero (1-6, 4.09 for Nationals and Pirates), RH Juan Nicasio (10-7, 4.50), LH Antonio Bastardo (3-0, 4.52 with Mets and Pirates), RH Jared Hughes (1-1, 3.03), LH Wade LeBlanc (4-0, 3.77 with Mariners and Pirates)
Hot spots: Rotation and closer. Right-hander Glasnow, 23, is a consensus top-25 prospect who made his major league debut last year. The Pirates would love to see him seize the fifth starter's job in camp, but right-hander Hutchison offers a more experienced option if Glasnow isn't ready. Watson became the closer after Mark Melancon was traded to Washington last summer, but his sinker/slider/changeup mix isn't typical ninth-inning stuff. Keep an eye on Rivero, a 25-year-old lefty acquired in the Melancon trade. His fastball actually gained velocity as last season wore on, eventually touching triple digits. Rivero might begin the season as the set-up man but his ascension to the ninth inning seems inevitable.
Outlook: The Pirates made some interesting tweaks after missing the playoffs for the first time in four years. They made no major trades, signed only two major league free agents (pitchers Nova and Hudson) and revamped Hurdle's coaching staff. They also moved their outfielders around: McCutchen goes from center to right, Marte from left to center, and Polanco from right to left. McCutchen is coming off the worst season of his career. So is ace right-hander Cole. The path back to the playoffs begins with the two stars bouncing back. If the team's other homegrown talent ' Taillon, Glasnow, Bell and Polanco ' continue their evolution, Pittsburgh should return to the postseason in 2017.
|Nova-Velasquez matchup key as Phillies visit Pirates|
PITTSBURGH -- On its face, the starting pitching matchup between the Philadelphia Phillies and Pittsburgh Pirates in the second of their three-game series Saturday at PNC Park looks like a mismatch.
On one hand, there is Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez, who was the talk of baseball a year ago at this time. But times have since become hard.
For the Pirates, Ivan Nova takes the mound, only a few weeks removed from being named National League Pitcher of the Month for April, beating out some tough competition.
Advantage, Pirates, right? Probably, but not necessarily.
Velasquez, a flame-throwing right-hander, broke in with Houston in 2015 before his trade to Philadelphia in a multi-player deal. He had an up-and-down year with the Phillies, but left an indelible mark with a complete-game shutout in April in which he struck out 16.
On July 19, 2016, Velasquez's record stood at 8-2 with a 3.15 ERA. By season's end (his last start was Sept. 3) he was 8-6, 4.12. Injuries played a role. So did a lack of consistent location.
Has anything changed? With a 2-3 record and a 5.65 ERA, the 24-year-old Velasquez has yet to regain his form. In his previous start on Sunday against Washington, he threw 100 pitches in just five innings but grinded out a reasonable outing, allowing two earned while striking out five and walking three.
It's been a mixed bag, with no better evidence than Velasquez's May 6 start, also against the Nationals, when he struck out eight and walked none, the latter figure a huge accomplishment for a pitcher with control issues. Yet he also gave up seven hits and six earned runs.
"I've got to do a better job of pitch selection," Velasquez said after that outing. "Again, it's just you live and learn."
Meanwhile, Nova, has been the polar opposite -- a model of consistency since the Pirates practically stole him from the New York Yankees last season. In 11 starts with Pittsburgh in 2016, the right-hander was 5-2 with a 3.06 ERA. But the eye-popping statistic was this: Three walks in 64 2/3 innings.
In earning the monthly pitching award, Nova yielded six earned runs in five starts. No one expects that all the time, but so far in May, Nova has been slightly off. His 2.48 ERA still ranks high in the league among starters, but his three outings this month have generated nine earned runs in 18 1/3 innings.
The 30-year-old veteran has pitched five complete games and walked seven in his 19 starts since coming to Pittsburgh last year.
Pirates pitching coach Ray Searage told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette earlier in the week that Nova has benefited from the adeptness of the team's catchers to frame strikes.
"They're going to be swinging, because they know he's a strike-thrower," Searage said. "Before they know it, they'll have a comfortable 0 for 4. He'll will wear them out."
Nova (3-3) pitched six innings in a no-decision against Arizona on Sunday, giving up nine hits and three earned runs with four strikeouts and one walk. In two career starts against the Phillies, one with the Yankees, Nova has a win and a no-decision, allowing one earned run in 12 2/3 innings.
|Last Updated: 9/21/2017 1:08:15 PM EST|