Go Time for Park
The team’s options to replace Park should he pitch poorly?
– Lefthander J.A. Happ. He narrowly lost the fifth starter’s job to Park in Spring Training. Charlie Manuel has praised Happ recently, saying that he knows Happ can be a successful starter. Happ is 1-0 with a 3.87 ERA in nine relief appearances this season, so he is doing something Park isn’t: getting hitters out at the big-league level. Happ is the favorite because he already is on the 25-man roster and has the confidence of his manager and pitching coach. Other candidates in Triple-A Lehigh Valley would mean optioning somebody to the Minor Leagues, and I just don’t see a fit at the moment.
– Right-hander Kyle Kendrick. Kendrick got a relatively early demotion to Minor League camp in Spring Training because the Phillies thought he hadn’t developed his secondary pitches enough to warrant a continued look. Kendrick is 2-1 with a 2.77 ERA in five starts in Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
– Right-hander Carlos Carrasco. Carrasco was the team’s dark horse candidate to win the fifth spot in Spring Training, but he showed his inexperience. He is 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in five starts for Lehigh Valley.
– Right-hander Rodrigo Lopez. The Phillies picked up Lopez before the end of Spring Training. He is 1-1 with a 3.07 ERA in three starts. He has big-league experience, which can help his cause should he continue to pitch well.
The Phillies face Johan Santana tonight. Let’s take a look at the Phillies’ projected lineup, and how they have fared against Santana in the past:
Jimmy Rollins: .059 (1 for 17) with 1 walk, 1 strikeout.
Shane Victorino: .083 (1 for 12) with 1 home run, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts.
Chase Utley: .167 (3 for 18) with 1 home run, 1 RBI, 3 strikeouts.
Ryan Howard: .429 (6 for 14) with 2 home runs, 5 RBIs, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts.
Jayson Werth: .313 (5 for 16) with 1 double, 1 homer, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts.
Raul Ibanez: .353 (12 for 34) with 1 homer, 8 RBIs, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts.
Pedro Feliz: .158 (3 for 19) with 1 RBI, 6 strikeouts.
Carlos Ruiz: .429 (3 for 7) with 1 strikeout.