Thursday night will be the second time in a row the Phillies and Dodgers will meet in the NLCS. Dodgers are coming off a three game sweep of the highly favored Cardinals. They beat both Cy Young canidates Wainwright and Carpenter during the sweep. Phillies beat a very hot Rockies team in 4 with an unforgettable comeback win in game 4. The first pitching matchup in the series will be Hamels and Wolf. Hamels in his career has been lights out against the Dodgers. He is 1-0 this year 14 innings and only 1 ER against the Dodgers. Wolf is 11-7 with a 3.23 ERA. Wolf is a lefty so that could give the phillies some trouble but the way the lineup has been hitting I don’t care who they put up their the phillies are going to score. Ruiz, Ibanez, Victorino, Werth, Howard, and Utley all hit above .300 in the NLDS and Ryan Howard tied A-Rod for the most RBIs in the the division series. If you thought there was a problem with the phillies bullpen man did they prove you wrong. They made some big pitches in some tough situations, especially Lidge. Yes Madson did give up the lead in the 8th but I expect him to do some good things against the Dodgers as a setup man. If he doesn’t do well you still have some guys who can pitch the 8th. Like Durbin for example setup a game against the Rockies. Eyre can come in for a leftie situation or possibly Myers could setup. Their is only one hole in for the phillies right now and that is who they pitch game 3. Probable pitchers would be Happ, Martinez, or Blanton. Personally I think Martinez should not start because Blanton and Happ can go deeper in games. I think Blanton should and will get the start, he has faced the Dodgers in the playoffs before and has experience. Happ got the start last time only because the Rockies struggled against lefties. I do think Happ will be a factor in the bullpen as a leftie specialist if Eyre pitches back-to-back games. I predict phillies in 5. Hamels and Lee win games 1 and 2, Blanton loses game three, then Hamels/Happ and Hamels/Lee win the last two.
Side Note: Has anybody had a Deja Vu. Last year the phillies won game 1 lost game 2 and won the series in 4.This year phillies won game 1 lost game 2 and won the series in 4. Last year we wanted the Dodgers to win so we wouldn’t have to face a good Cubs team. This year we wanted the Dodgers win so we wouldn’t have to face the 2 Cy Young canidates Wainwright and Carpenter. Just saying it sounds like the same storyline so far, hope it stays that way with a World Series win in the end
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