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Phillies Embark on 7-Game Road Trip Behind Velasquez

By Matt Rappa, Sports Talk Philly editor

Behind RHP Vince Velasquez, the Philadelphia Phillies (58-53) will embark on their seven-game west coast trip starting Monday evening against the Arizona Diamondbacks (56-56) and 30-year-old rookie Merrill Kelly at Chase Field.

The Phillies have lost five straight series to the Diamondbacks dating back to June 16-18, 2017. In the 16 games over this stretch, the club was shut out twice, including the most recent game on June 12 (2-0), also started by Kelly.

The road trip against the Diamondbacks (August 5-7) and San Francisco Giants (August 8-11) will be the Phillies' fourth-to-last this season.

Starting Pitching Matchup:

Philadelphia Phillies (58-53) Arizona Diamondbacks (56-56)
RHP Vince Velasquez RHP Merrill Kelly
(3-6, 4.40 ERA) (7-11, 4.52 ERA)

RHP Vince Velasquez, Age: 27

  • Career vs. ARI: 1-2, 3.93 ERA, 6 G, 3 GS, 18 1/3 IP, 17 H, 9 R, 8 ER, 2 HR, 5 BB, 19 SO, 1.200 WHIP
  • Career at Chase Field: 1-1, 3.60 ERA, 3 G, 2 GS, 10 IP, 12 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 0 HR, 2 BB, 10 SO, 1.400 WHIP

Velasquez will make his first appearance since he played two innings in left field in Friday's 15-inning marathon game against the Chicago White Sox. In his three starts since the All-Star break, the right-hander is 1-1 with a 3.52 ERA, 22-6 strikeout-to-walk ratio and 1.239 WHIP over 15 1/3 innings.


RHP Merrill Kelly, Age: 30

  • Career vs. PHI: 1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 7 2/3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 HR, 0 BB, 5 SO, 0.391 WHIP
  • Career at Chase Field: 3-4, 3.77 ERA, 10 G, 10 GS, 59 2/3 IP, 60 H, 26 R, 25 ER, 10 HR, 6 BB, 59 SO, 1.106 WHIP

Since throwing 7 2/3 scoreless innings against the Phillies en route to a winning decision on June 12, Kelly is 0-5 with a 6.02 ERA and .271/.301/.497 opposing slash in his eight starts since. The Diamondbacks have lost six straight games in games starting by the Houston, Texas, native.

Starting Lineups:

Philadelphia Phillies (58-53) Arizona Diamondbacks (56-56)
  Position Player Bats   Position Player Bats
1 2B Cesar Hernandez S 1 CF Ketel Marte S
2 1B Rhys Hoskins R 2 LF David Peralta L
3 RF Bryce Harper L 3 2B Eduardo Escobar S
4 C J.T. Realmuto R 4 1B Christian Walker R
5 SS Jean Segura R 5 3B Jake Lamb L
6 3B Scott Kingery R 6 RF Adam Jones R
7 LF Adam Haseley L 7 SS Nick Ahmed R
8 P Vince Velasquez R 8 C Carson Kelly R
9 CF Roman Quinn S 9 P Merrill Kelly R

Broadcast Information:

  • First pitch: 9:40 p.m.
  • Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP

Game Notes:

  • With 51 games to go, the Phillies remain tied with the Washington Nationals for the second National League Wild Card spot. The Phillies, Nationals, Chicago White Sox and San Diego Padres are the only teams that have never qualified for the MLB postseason as a wild-card team.
  • MLB announced on Monday that that NL Wild Card Game will take place on Tuesday, October 1.
  • Phillies record this season when trailing after:
    • 6 innings: 5-41
    • 7 innings: 1-45
    • 8 innings: 2-43
  • Diamondbacks left fielder David Peralta is 4-for-7 in his career against Velasquez with one double, one triple, four RBI and three strikeouts (.571/.571/1.000). Meanwhile, catcher Alex Avila is 3-for-3 with a solo home run and walk (click to expand).


What's Next:

  • Tuesday, August 6, 2019: vs. Arizona Diamondbacks, 9:40 p.m.
    • Chase Field, Phoenix, Ariz.
    • RHP Jake Arrieta (8-8, 4.44 ERA) vs. RHP Mike Leake (9-8, 4.27 ERA)
    • TV: NBCSP; Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP


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