Phillies, Nola look to earn series win over Reds, Bailey

By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Staff

PHILADELPHIA — It was a pinch-hit homerun, the first of Nick Williams’ young career, the put the Phillies ahead for good in the opening game of their series against the Reds.

For the third time, the Phillies will turn to the top of their rotation. Young right-hander Aaron Nola will face off against long-time veteran right-hander Homer Bailey.

While Nola has the higher ceiling, the Cincinnati lineup has more experience facing him than the Phillies starters do facing Bailey. Seven Reds starting players have faced Nola for a combined 37 at bats (.189 average) while only two Phillies starters (Santana and Franco) have faced Bailey a total of seven times with only one hit. The Phillies will look to add to that hit total Tuesday night.

Starting Pitching Matchup:

Cincinnati Reds (2-7) Philadelphia Phillies (4-5)
RHP  Homer Bailey RHP Aaron Nola
(0-0, 4.22 ERA) (0-0, 2.61 ERA)

Homer Bailey — Age: 31;

  • Last Start: April 5, 2018, at PIT: L, 4.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 SO
  • Career vs PHI: (1-4), 10 G, 59.0 IP, 55 H, 30 R, 26 ER, 14 BB, 47 SO, 3.97 ERA
  • Career at Citizen’s Bank Park: (0-3), 7 G, 35.0 IP, 41 H, 26 R, 22 ER, 11 BB, 21 SO, 5.66 ERA

Homer Bailey was drafted seventh overall by the Reds in the 2004 draft out of high school. He moved up through the minor league system and made his debut with the Reds three years later in 2007.

Bailey has struggled with many injuries throughout his career. Over the past 10 seasons, he has only player more than 20 games in three seasons – 2012, 2013 and 2014. Over those seasons, Bailey posted a 3.61 ERA over 562 and two-thirds innings pitched. This stretch accounts for over half of the innings he has thrown in his entire career. Over the last three seasons, he has pitched just over 125 innings and posted a 6.39 ERA.

After giving up just one run and getting stuck with the tough-luck loss in a game that the lost to the Nationals one to zero, Bailey failed to make it through the fifth inning in his second start. He looks to get his first win of the season against the Phillies.

Aaron Nola — Age: 24;

  • Last Start: April 4, 2018, at NYM: ND, 5.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 SO, 4 BB
  • Career vs. CIN: (1-1), 3 G, 20.0 IP, 15 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 3 BB, 22 SO, 3.15 ERA
  • Career at Citizen’s Bank Park: (14-12), 29 G, 180.0 IP, 158 H, 77 R, 71 ER, 47 BB, 208 SO, 3.54 ERA

Nola was originally drafted by the Blue Jays in the 22nd round of the 2011 draft out of high school. He chose not to sign and attended Louisiana State University. In 2014, 10 years after Reds starter Homer Bailey became the seventh overall pick, the Phillies drafted Nola seventh overall. The move turned out to be a good one, as Nola moved up through the system at an astonishing rate, especially for a pitcher. He made his Major League debut just one year later in 2015.

Despite not yet having his first win of the season, Nola has turned in two good starts to begin the season. He gave up only one run on Opening Day before manager Gabe Kapler made the questionable decision to pull the right-hander after only 68 pitches. In his second start, the offense went cold and the two runs Nola allowed proved to be too much for the Phillies offense to overcome.

The 24-year-old will look to turn in his first quality start and earn his first win of the season Tuesday night.

Starting Lineups:

Cincinnati Reds (2-7) Philadelphia Phillies (4-5)
  Position Player Bats   Position Player Bats
1 RF  Jesse Winker  1 2B  Cesar Hernandez 
2 SS  Jose Peraza  2 1B  Carlos Santana 
3 1B  Joey Votto  3 CF  Odubel Herrera 
4 2B  Scooter Gennet  4 LF  Rhys Hoskins 
5 LF  Adam Duvall  5 RF  Nick Williams 
6 Tucker Barnhart  6 3B  Scott Kingery 
7 3B  Alex Blandino  7 Jorge Alfaro 
8 Homer Bailey  8 SS  JP Crawford 
9 CF  Billy Hamiton  9 Aaron Nola 

Broadcast Information:

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

Game Notes:

  • First baseman and outfielder Rhys Hoskins has reached base safely in all nine of the club’s games.
  • Phillies outfielder Aaron Altherr is seeing an average of 4.75 pitcher per plate appearance. That is second in all of the Major Leagues behind only Pittsburgh’s Francisco Cervelli (4.76).
  • Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco is tied with Bryce Harper for the second most RBIs this season (12). He trails only Pittsburgh’s Gregor Polanco, who has 13 RBIs this season.

What’s Next:

  • Wednesday, April 11, 2018: vs. Cincinnati Reds, 7:05 p.m.
    • Citizens Bank Park
    • RHP Luis Castillo (0-2, 9.00 ERA) vs. RHP Nick Pivetta (1-0, 2.79 ERA)
    • TV: NBCSP+; Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP
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