The Phillies have scored 24 runs in the first two games this series, and will try to keep the flood gates open tonight for Jon Lieber (4-9, 5.51 ERA), seeking his first win since July 26.
Lieber's season has taken a turn for the better following two solid post-deadline starts. The Phillies attempted to deal the 36-year-old right-hander at the non-waiver trade deadline, but found no takers. Lieber is 1-4 with a 5.12 ERA in seven starts since coming off the disabled list and was unimpressive in starts that were reportedly attended by scouts.
The good news is Lieber has typically been a strong finisher, and if the Phils are to have any shot at the playoffs, he must finish strong over the remaining 45 games. He’s pitched well against the Mets. Lifetime, he is 5-6 with a 4.09 ERA in 19 career games against them, and is 0-1 with a 3.21 ERA in two starts this season.
Tom Glavine (12-5, 3.92 ERA) faces the Phillies for the fourth time this season. The veteran left-hander is 2-0 with a 4.92 ERA against them this season.
Last night, Randy Wolf lived up to his reputation as a poor-man’s Glavine with an excellent 7-inning, 2-run effort. Wolf, who appears to be in superb physical shape, helped himself with a 2-for-2 night at the plate.
Pat Burrell will likely return to the lineup after getting benched the last two nights. In doing so, manager Charlie Manuel may be taking the bat out of the hand of red-hot David Dellucci, who still has a .815 OPS against left-handers. The former reservist hit a three-run homer yesterday and is batting .421 with five home runs and 12 RBIs in the month of August.
Shane Victorino, also swinging a hot bat, could also sit. Victorino went 2-for-4 with a home run and a triple last night and is hitting .310 with a 1.018 OPS this month.