Seriously. The lowest ERAs among starters for either team are a 34-year old who was released by the Phillies just another year ago, and a 23-year old who is filling in for one of Philly’s big three. And it’s not because the other pitchers are doing poorly.
That said, this week’s matchup between the Phillies and the Giants is not going to be the marquee some would want. The two big names in the Philly rotation (Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay) will not pitch in the series. And the Giants won’t send out Vogelsong, who you have to think has an axe to be grinded with the team that nearly convinced him to leave baseball last season.
By the way, if the current rotations stand, Vogelsong will also miss the Phillies at home in a couple of weeks.
There is one game I will be very interested to watch, however. Wednesday’s game, where the only one of Philadelphia’s aces (Cole Hamels) takes on the Giants’ highest-paid player, who was deemed unfit to face them last fall. But Zito can feast on left-handers. Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Raul Ibanez, Dominic Brown, they’re all left-handers. And that Jimmy Rollins character is a switch-hitter, but he’s terrible against left-handed pitchers.
If Zito can keep that Victorino guy in check, I think that game will be the best for Giants fans, and it’s the one that ESPN will be showing nationwide.
Oddly enough, east coast bias survives even when an east coast team is involved. Apparently, some people still think that the Giants-Phillies series, a rematch of last year’s NLCS, a matchup of two division leaders, a series that involves the team with the best record in the league against one of the two teams tied for the second-best record in the league….is not the series of the week. Nor that any of the pitching match ups between the two teams that have allowed the fewest runs in the majors, is worthy of the pitching matchup of the week. (He also call the Giants deadline trade in 2010 for Javier Lopez a trade for ‘spare parts.’ Ryan Howard and Chase Utley might disagree with you there, pal.)
Oh, and by the way, can anyone tell me what was given away at yesterday’s game? I really have no memory of it.