On Deck: All eyes on Phillips
Posted on: July 16, 2011 11:13 am
Edited on: July 16, 2011 11:22 am
By Matt Snyder
Saturday brings us the usual full slate of games, which you can follow on CBSSports.com's live scoreboard. The biggest story of the day has to be St. Louis' Public Enemy No. 1.
DatDudeBP vs. Saint Louie: Brandon Phillips is not especially liked in St. Louis, and that's putting it mildly. Last season he called the Cardinals "little bitches" and then incited a brawl when he tapped Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina on the shin guards. This season he's been quiet in terms of not starting any fights, but he found a way Friday night to best the Cardinals with a walk-off homer. Despite being a game under .500, the Reds are only three games out in the dreadful NL Central. The Cardinals are tied for first with the Pirates (feels weird to type, but also kind of cool). The Brewers trail by just a half-game. So the Reds-Cardinals matchup is a big one again Saturday. Chris Carpenter (4-7, 3.85) for the Cards squares off against the Reds' Bronson Arroyo (7-7, 5.58). St. Louis at Cincinnati, 7:10 p.m. ET.
CC looks to turn tide: The Yankees have come out of the break and lost two at Toronto. Meanwhile, the Blue Jays have now won five in a row. It's a trend the Bronx Bombers would certainly love to stop, as they trail the Red Sox by 1 1/2 games in the AL East. Saturday marks a pretty good shot for the Yanks to reverse things, as CC Sabathia (13-4, 2.72) gets the ball. It won't be easy for the New York offense, however, because All-Star Ricky Romero (7-8, 3.09) is the Blue Jays starter. Romero is 1-0 with a 2.08 ERA in two starts this season against the Yankees. New York (AL) at Toronto, 1:07 p.m. ET.
King Felix's tall task: The Mariners were in the thick of the AL West race for a bit. Losing seven games in a row doesn't help, nor does the fact that the Rangers have all of a sudden won nine straight. That means in just over a week's worth of games, the Mariners have fallen all the way down to 9 1/2 games out of first. They were 2 1/2 back before this stretch, which is the kind of thing that effectively moves teams from buyers to sellers in July. Fortunately for Seattle, it sends its best pitcher, Felix Hernandez (8-7, 3.19), to the mound. Unfortunately for Seattle, the opponent is the red-hot Rangers and All-Star pitcher C.J. Wilson (9-3, 3.20). Texas at Seattle, 10:10 p.m. ET.
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