The Phillies-Yankees series has been advertised as a barnburner between two hot teams leading their respective leagues in homers. History suggests otherwise, at least for one side.
Churning along just as they are now, the Phillies crashed into a wall last season once they hit interleague play, going 4-11 against the Junior Circuit. Offensively, the hangover lingered for months. Lifetime, they’re 90-109 against the American League, typically receiving the short end of the stick by playing better competition than their National League peers. This season, the schedule is a bear once again, starting with a red-hot Yankees team that has won nine in a row. This will be the Phillies’ first visit to the Bronx since 2000, where they’re a lifetime 1-5. The Yankees, meanwhile, are a stunning 123-87 against the NL.
But for all the hype about two these power offenses, don’t be surprised if it turns into a tight series. Besides Mets-Boston and Angles-Dodgers, Phillies-Yankees is this weekend’s marquee match-up, including a Saturday’s East Coast game on Fox. It has all the trappings of a playoff series, including some excellent pairings, like Brett Myers and A.J. Burnett tonight, then Cole Hamels and C.C. Sabathia on Sunday. In true Beerleaguer fashion, it's Saturday's paring of J.A. Happ and Andy Pettittee that intrigues me most.
Chacin activated: Left-hander Gustavo Chacin has been added to the Reading roster from extended spring training, sliding into Antonio Bastardo's spot. The Phils signed the former Blue Jay hurler in April. To make room, catcher Orlando Guevara, who has become the Phillies’ well-traveled organizational catcher, will go all the way back to Williamsport after seeing action with both Lehigh Valley and Reading this season.
Other news: Right-hander Steven Register and Miguel Cairo were officially added to Lehigh Valley. Steven Green was released and Jose Valendia demoted. Mike Drago wonders if Kyle Drabek is coming to Reading soon, and if Vance Worley is headed to the Majors.