Phillies, Velasquez seek home victory over MLB’s best Yankees

By Josh Liddick, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The Philadelphia Phillies (41-34) are trying to erase any memory of their late-inning collapse against the Nationals on Sunday night as the New York Yankees (50-25) come to Citizens Bank Park for a three-game set starting Monday night.

It's not every day that the Phillies get an interleague matchup with the Yankees at home, as this is the first regular-season meeting between the two teams in Philly since June 21, 2006.

The Phillies led the Nationals in Washington Sunday night 6-2 before allowing six unanswered runs to end the game, falling 8-6. The Phillies have won seven of their last 10 games, while the Yankees have dropped their last three games, just barely clinging on to the title as the 'Best Team in Baseball.'

Despite almost six years of hardships on the diamond, the Phillies have won four of the last five matchups against the Yankees. In the last meeting between the two, New York beat Philadelphia 10-2 at Yankee Stadium on June 24, 2015, almost three years to the date. The Yankees are just 13-14 vs. the Phillies all-time, one of just two National League teams in which they have a sub-.500 record during the regular season (Dodgers: 6-7).

A win for the Yankees gives them a little more breathing room atop the AL East, currently tied for the division lead with the Boston Red Sox. The Phillies, on the other hand, are still fighting for the second wild card spot, only a half-game up on both the Nationals and Dodgers.

On Monday night, the recently sliding Yankees will look to right the ship against a Phillies offense that has been depleted by injuries as of late. Third baseman Maikel Franco suffered a foot injury against the Nationals on Sunday night after slipping on the first base bag following a 38-minute rain delay. It seems that he didn't suffer any major injury, but it will be something to monitor on Monday night. Mitch Walding played the second half of Sunday's game at third base.

If there's a player to watch for New York, it's got to be Giancarlo Stanton, who went 5-for-5 with two doubles, a home run, two runs scored, and two RBIs in a loss against the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday.

While pitcher Jonathan Loaisiga is making just his third big-league start, the Yankees' pitching staff has been the best in the business with runners in scoring position, holding opponents to a Major League-low .178 (30-for-169) batting average with RISP.

Starting Pitching Matchup:

New York Yankees (50-25) Philadelphia Phillies (41-34)
RHP  Jonathan Loaisiga RHP Vince Velasquez
(1-0, 3.12 ERA) (5-7, 4.82 ERA)

RHP Jonathan Loaisiga — Age: 23;

  • Last Start: June 20, 2018, vs. SEA: ND, 3.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB,  4 SO
  • Career vs. Phillies: First career appearance.

In Loaisiga's third start of his major league career, he will attempt to bounce back. The 23-year-old right-hander allowed three runs on six hits in a no-decision against the Mariners. He managed to strike out four and walk two.

Between Double-A Trenton and High-A Tampa this season, Loaisiga is 6-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 10 starts. He was called up to the majors on June 15 directly from Trenton.

RHP Vince Velasquez — Age: 26;

  • Last Start: June 19, 2018, vs. STL: ND, 6.1 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 8 SO, 2 HR, 4.82 ERAT
  • Career vs. Yankees: (0-0), 2 G, 8.1 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 5 SO, 0 HR, 3.24 ERA

Vince Velasquez has had two sharp starts in a row, despite getting the No Decision his last time out against the Cardinals. Two starts ago, Velasquez took a no-hitter into the seventh inning against the Rockies.

It's awfully nice to see Velasquez find success on the mound this season, considering all the injury hardships he's been through the past three or so seasons. This will be his third career appearance against the Yankees and the first since 2015.

Starting Lineups:

New York Yankees (50-25) Philadelphia Phillies (41-34)
  Position Player Bats   Position Player Bats
1  CF Brett Gardner   L  1 2B  Cesar Hernandez  S
2  RF Aaron Judge  R 2 LF  Rhys Hoskins   R 
3  SS Didi Gregorius   L  3 CF  Odubel Herrera   L 
4  LF Giancarlo Stanton  R 4 1B  Carlos Santana   S 
5  3B Miguel Andujar   R  5 RF  Nick Williams   L 
6  1B Greg Bird   L  6 SS  Scott Kingery  R
7   2B  Gleyber Torres  R 7 3B  Maikel Franco  R
8  C  Austin Romine  R  8 Jorge Alfaro   R 
9  P Jonathan Loaisiga  R 9 Vince Velasquez   R 

Broadcast Information:

  • First pitch: 7:05 p.m.
  • Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP

Game Notes:

  • Rhys Hoskins enters Monday night with 400 career at-bats. His .924 OPS through the first 400 at-bats of his career is the highest of any Phillie in the last 50 years and the highest by an MLB player since Cody Bellinger (.951 OPS) in 2017. … Hoskins is also the first player for the Phillies in the modern era (since 1900) to have 25 doubles and 80 walks through the first 400 at-bats.
  • Rhys Hoskins has been red-hot since coming back from the 10-day disabled list (jaw) on June 9. He's slashing .333/.431/.685 with 13 runs, four doubles, five home runs, nine walks, and 15 RBI in 65 plate appearances.
  • At 24-13, the Phillies are tied for the best home record in the National League with the San Francisco Giants.
  • Interestingly enough, the Phillies have tallied an extra-base hit in 71 consecutive games since April 4, which is the longest active streak in MLB.


Updated: June 25, 2018
Braves 44 32 378 306
Phillies 41 34 2.5 335 317
Nationals 41 35 3.0 323 386
Mets 31 44 12.5 299 348
Braves 31 47 14.0 283 396
Cubs 42 33 +1.0 358 278
Phillies 41 34 335 317
Dodgers 41 35 0.5 360 299
Nationals 41 35 0.5 323 286
Cardinals 40 36 1.5 324 315
Giants 40 39 3.0 327 351
Rockies 38 40 4.5 371 352

What's Next:

  • Tuesday, June 26, 2018: vs. New York Yankees, 7:05 p.m.