Alec Asher set for major league debut against Padres

Philadelphia, PA – This afternoon in the series finale matinee against the San Diego Padres (62-67), right hander Alec Asher will be making his major league debut for the Philadelphia Phillies (52-78) as they seek their fifth series sweep of the season.

Asher, 23, is the second return from the Cole Hamels and Jake Diekman trade to the Texas Rangers to make his big-league debut this season. The other, right hander Jerad Eickhoff, has allowed just three earned runs on 11 hits and two walks over 12.0 innings.

"It's awesome. It's a dream come true. I've worked my whole life for this since I was a little boy," said Asher in an interview with reporters prior to Saturday night's game. "It's awesome to finally get here."

Asher had Tommy John surgery at the age of 14, which he has said enabled him to learn early on what it takes to achieve his goals and how to obtain 'a good work ethic'.

The Lakeland, Florida-native continued, commenting on the current state of the team and how he can contribute with just over 30 games remaining in the season.

"There's a lot of young talent on this team. A lot of good guys. You just try to be a part of it and try to do what you can to make the team better."

Starting Pitching Matchup:

San Diego Padres (62-67) Philadelphia Phillies (52-78)
RHP James Shields RHP Alec Asher
(9-6, 3.89 ERA) LHV: (2-0, 2.08 ERA; 26 IP)

Shields, 33, is 2-0 with a 5.70 ERA and a 1.352 WHIP ratio in four career regular season starts against the Phillies.

The 2011 American League All-Star last faced the Phillies on August 7, when he allowed three runs on six hits and a walk over 6 2/3 innings in opposition of Aaron Nola.

The Padres have lost 12 of Shields' last 15 starts, dating back to June 9 in Atlanta. The right hander has surrendered 41 earned runs and 39 walks spanning 89.0 innings during that stretch.


Asher was 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA and a 1.154 WHIP ratio in four starts with the Lehigh Valley IronPigs prior to today's purchase of his contract by the Phillies.

Originally drafted out of high school by the San Francisco Giants in the 23rd round of the 2010 amateur draft, Asher chose to pursue college instead and was later selected by the Rangers two years later in the 4th round.

Asher was 28-31 with a 3.53 ERA and 420 strikeouts in 456.0 career minor league innings.

Game Notes:

  • Asher will be the 14th different pitcher to start a game for the Phillies this season, and the 5th to make his major league debut. Additionally, he will become the fourth rookie currently in the Phillies' rotation, alongside Eickhoff, Nola, and southpaw Adam Morgan.
  • Closer Ken Giles recorded his 11th save of the season in last night's 4-3 victory. Giles has allowed runs in just three of his previous 35 appearances, or 37 1/3 innings. His 1.38 ERA since making his big-league debut on June 12, 2014 is the lowest for any National League reliever in that stretch.
  • The Phillies have defeated the Padres seven consecutive times at home, and five overall. A win this afternoon would secure a six-game season sweep against San Diego, who is 10.5 games out of the National League West division.

Broadcast Information:

  • First-pitch: 1:35 pm EST
  • TV: CSN
  • Radio: 94 WIP, 1210 WPHT, WTTM 1680 (Sp.)

What's Next:

  • Monday, August 31, 2015: at New York Mets, 7:10 pm
  • Tuesday, September 1, 2015: at New York Mets, 7:10 pm
    • RHP Aaron Harang (5-14, 4.79 ERA) vs. LHP Jon Niese (8-9, 3.95 ERA)
    • TV: CSN; Radio: 94 WIP, 1210 WPHT, WTTM 1680 (Sp.)
  • Wednesday, September 2, 2015: at New York Mets, 7:10 pm
    • RHP Aaron Nola (5-1, 3.26 ERA) vs. RHP Matt Harvey (11-7, 2.48 ERA)
    • TV: CSN; Radio: 94 WIP, 1210 WPHT, WTTM 1680 (Sp.)

Matt Rappa (@mattrappasports) is managing editor of