Brad Lidge Lives, Pitches Scoreless 1-2-3 Seventh Inning

Brad Lidge Lives, Pitches Scoreless 1-2-3 Seventh Inning

Charlie Manuel has said for weeks now that he'd love some help in the back of the Phillies bullpen before the trade deadline passes at the end of the month.

Brad Lidge probably wasn't exactly what Manuel had in mind when voicing his desires, but the former Lights Out closer could help in a big way down the stretch. And he showed a nice glimpse of how good he can be in his first appearance of the season for the Phillies against the Padres this afternoon.

Lidge may not have full confidence just yet in his fastball's velocity, only throwing two heaters out of eleven pitches on the day -- one at 89 mph and another at 90 mph according to the telecast.

But one thing is clear: Lidge's slider was still plenty nasty. And he threw 9 of them, with plenty of bite to show for it.

He came in to pitch the seventh inning, replacing Andrew Carpenter who pitched two scoreless innings in relief of Cliff Lee.

Lidge got Will Veneble to ground out to first, struck out Kyle Blanks, and forced Jesus Guzman to ground out to third to end the inning. The slider looked fantastic.

Charlie Manuel was happy with the way Lidge threw.

"He had a good inning. He did very well," Manuel said. "He threw strikes. Slider was
good. Spotted his fastball. Didn't throw a lot of 'em, but when he did,
he kinda used it and sat on the hitters."

What would it mean to the Phils' bullpen if Lidge can return to form?

"It would mean we'd have another piece that can pitch from the seventh inning on back," Manuel said. "That's big."

Fans in attendance gave Lidge a South Philadelphia ovation (good kind) as he walked off the mound to end the inning. After spending half the season on the DL, it must have felt fantastic.

Bullpen mate Michael Stutes was also great for the Phils on Monday, pitching two scoreless innings of his own. The pen kept them in it, but the bats failed to overcome the late deficit.

Final score: Padres 5, Phillies 4.

Maikel Franco day to day with sore wrist

Maikel Franco day to day with sore wrist

PITTSBURGH -- Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco, who was hit on the left wrist by a pitch on Friday night, is not in the starting lineup for Saturday’s game against the Pittsburgh Pirates (see lineup).

Franco was hit by a pitch from the Pirates’ Gerrit Cole in the first inning of the Phillies’ 4-0 victory then was removed after hitting a single in the third inning (see story).

“He’s still sore,” Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said Saturday. “He’s day to day. Maybe he will be back in the lineup (Sunday).

Franco suffered a fracture of the same wrist last August when he was hit by a pitch.

Andres Blanco is taking Franco’s place in the lineup after having two hits Friday night when he replaced the third baseman. Blanco is hitting .264 with three home runs in 73 games this season and is reportedly drawing some interest from contending teams looking to add bench help.

“I could see why he would be a desirable player,” Mackanin said. “We’re not going to give him away, though, if we do trade him. He’s played very well for us.”

Source: Brayden Schenn spurns Flyers' 2-year offer, wants $5.5 million

Source: Brayden Schenn spurns Flyers' 2-year offer, wants $5.5 million

It looks like the Flyers and Brayden Schenn are heading towards arbitration. 

A source tells CSNPhilly.com Flyers Insider Tim Panaccio that the Flyers and Schenn's camp are at odds over the salary of Schenn's next contract.

Schenn turned down a two-year deal worth $4.25 million in the first year and $4.369 million in the second, according to the source, noting that Schenn is looking for a deal that would pay him $5.5 million this upcoming season.

Schenn is coming off a career year, setting career highs in goals (26) and points (59), and is now looking to cash in on his best season. Last season, Schenn earned $2.75 million.

General manager Ron Hextall has repeatedly said he believes a deal will get done, but at the moment nothing looks imminent.

Schenn's arbitration hearing is scheduled for Monday.

Today's Lineup: Andres Blanco in, Maikel Franco out after HBP last night

Today's Lineup: Andres Blanco in, Maikel Franco out after HBP last night

After being hit on the wrist by a pitch in Friday's win (see story), Maikel Franco will not play today. Instead, Andres Blanco will take his place, hitting third in the lineup. Blanco was 2 for 2 replacing Franco in the third inning on Friday, with an RBI and a run scored. 

Blanco has been reliable when called upon this season, hitting .264 with a .317 OBP in mostly a utility role.

Other than that, the lineup remains the same as Friday.

Peter Bourjos will leadoff after going 0 for 5 last night, followed by Odubel Herrara. After an All-Star first half, Herrara has hit .211 in July, but seemed to get back on track with three hits on Friday, while scoring two runs. 

After a brutal stretch of games and an extended All-Star break, Aaron Nola returned to form vs. the Marlins last week, tossing six shutout innings. Nola again looks to prove the doubters wrong again today vs. the Pirates, who he has never faced in his brief career. 

Here is tonight's lineup:

1. Peter Bourjos RF
2. Odubel Herrera CF
3. Andres Blanco 3B
4. Tommy Joseph 1B
5. Cameron Rupp C
6. Cody Asche LF
7. Freddy Galvis SS
8. Cesar Hernandez 2B
9. Aaron Nola P