Phillies, Velasquez eye series win in finale with Padres

By: Matt Rappa, managing editor

PHILADELPHIA — Having won four of their last five games, the Philadelphia Phillies (4-5) will look for their second consecutive series victory of the season as they face southpaw Drew Pomeranz and the last-place San Diego Padres (3-6) in a Thursday matinee.

Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez, who threw six shutout innings against the defending National League champion New York Mets on Saturday, will make his Citizens Bank Park debut.

A win in the series finale would put the Phillies at the .500 mark for the first time since Sunday, April 12, of last season.

Starting Pitching Matchup:

San Diego Padres (3-6) Philadelphia Phillies (4-5)
LHP Drew Pomeranz RHP Vince Velasquez
(1-0, 3.60 ERA) (1-0, 0.00 ERA)

Drew Pomeranz — Age: 27;

  • Last Start: April 9, 2016, at COL: W, 5.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 SO
  • Career vs. PHI: (0-1), 3 G, 14.0 IP, 10 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 5 BB, 14 SO, HR, 3.86 ERA

Pomeranz was acquired by the Padres this offseason in a four-player trade that included first baseman Yonder Alonso and southpaw Marc Rzepczynski being dealt to the Oakland Athletics.

In his most recent start against the Phillies on Sept. 20, 2014, Pomeranz surrendered just one hit and two walks over five shutout innings, however the Athletics fell 3-0 as the bullpen surrendered a two-run home run to shortstop Freddy Galvis and a RBI-single to right fielder Marlon Byrd in the seventh and eighth innings, respectively.


Vince Velasquez — Age: 23;

  • Last Start: April 9, 2016, at NYM: W, 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 9 SO
  • Career vs. SD: N/A

Velasquez's nine strikeouts on Saturday was the most by a pitcher in their Phillies debut since eventual National League Cy Young Award winner Roy Halladay struck out the same amount in opposition of the Washington Nationals on April 5, 2010.

The right-hander's average velocity Saturday against the Mets 94.2 miles per hour was the second-highest for a Phillies starting pitcher since 2002, according to's Corey Seidman.

Starting Lineups:

San Diego Padres (3-6) Philadelphia Phillies (4-5)
  Position Player Bats   Position Player Bats
1 CF Jon Jay L 1 2B Cesar Hernandez S
2 2B Cory Spangenberg L 2 CF Odubel Herrera L
3 1B Wil Myers R 3 3B Maikel Franco R
4 LF Melvin Upton Jr. R 4 1B Ryan Howard L
5 C Derek Norris R 5 C Cameron Rupp R
6 RF Jabari Blash R 6 SS Andres Blanco S
7 3B Alexi Amarista L 7 RF Peter Bourjos R
8 SS Alexei Ramirez R 8 LF Tyler Goeddel R
9 P Drew Pomeranz R 9 P Vince Velasquez S

Broadcast Information:

  • First pitch: 1:05 p.m.
  • TV: CSN
  • Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP

 Game Notes:

  • Phillies starting pitchers have combined for a 2.50 ERA (third-best in MLB) and a 0.889 WHIP ratio (second-best) over 54.0 innings and nine starts so far this season. They have allowed just 36 hits, 15 earned runs and 12 walks, while striking out 59 batters (MLB best). Right-hander Aaron Nola accounts for approximately 29 percent of the strikeout total, with eight and nine-strikeout performances thus far.
  • The Phillies will be looking for their 19th series victory against the Padres since 2004, having gone 18-5-2 in the 25 series meetings prior. They have won 27 of their 42 meetings against the Padres at Citizens Bank Park (64.3 percent) in the same stretch.
  • Phillies right-hander Jeanmar Gomez recorded his fourth save of the season Wednesday evening in four opportunities. He is tied for second-most in the category throughout Major League Baseball, trailing just former Phillies closer and all-time saves leader Jonathan Papelbon of the Washington Nationals (5).


What's Next:

  • Friday, April 15, 2016: vs. Washington Nationals, 7:05 p.m.
    • Citizens Bank Park
    • RHP Joe Ross (1-0, 1.29 ERA) vs. RHP Jeremy Hellickson (1-0, 1.54 ERA)
    • TV: CSN; Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP
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