The Phillies' compressed end-of-season schedule kicks off tonight in Cincinnati, where Cole Hamels (13-7, 2.62) takes the mound for the first time in 2 1/2 weeks.
Hamels is 7-0 with a 1.43 ERA in eight career starts against the Reds in the regular season. An earlier post noted his success against them in last year's NLDS. In case you're wondering, reigning NL MVP Joey Votto is 2-for-12 lifetime against Hamels. However, he won't be getting any sympathy cards from Brandon Phillips, who is 3-for-25 with seven K's against the Phils lefty. The Phillies, who haven't played since Friday and haven't won since last Tuesday, will look to avoid a third straight loss. They have enjoyed success in the past against Homer Bailey (7-5, 4.44), including a 10-4 loss on May 26 in which they chased the Reds' right-hander after only four innings. Raul Ibanez hit a three-run homer against him in that contest.
Lineup: Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Pence RF, Mayberry LF, Ruiz C, Valdez SS, Hamels P.