The streaking Phillies are in Houston tonight where they'll look to keep tightening that 3 game wild card gap when they take on the lowly Astros in the first of a four-game set. Tyler Cloyd (1-1, 4.24) has gone from a guy getting a meaningless cup of coffee audition to a pitcher thrown to the fire in the middle of a playoff hunt.
As Matt Gelb pointed out earlier in the day, the Phillies can limit Cloyd's exposure down the stretch due to a couple of off days on the schedule. If they so choose, the Phillies could only throw Cloyd two more times after tonight and that would be against the Mets next week and the Marlins at the end of the month.
Those could be three starts against middling teams that could really impact a season though.
And if there's pretty much any team in baseball you'd want the Phillies to face after winning seven straight it'd likely be these Houston Astros. They're just 45-98 on the season and have earned a bit of a reputation as an awful, awful baseball team. A fun game is to go look at their roster and try to see how many names you actually recognize.
8:05 start from Houston. St. Louis takes on the Dodgers in LA at 10:10 so the Phillies can make up ground on one of those teams. Pittsburgh has the night off.
#Phils lineup at Houston: SS Rollins, LF Pierre, 2B Utley, 1B Howard, CF Mayberry, RF Brown, 3B Frandsen, C Kratz, P Cloyd.
— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) September 13, 2012