Last Place Phillies Host Last Place Red Sox In Inter-League Play

Last Place Phillies Host Last Place Red Sox In Inter-League Play

Perhaps it's the fact that the Sixers are playing an important Game 4 playoff across the street against the Celtics, or perhaps it's the fact that the weather is so nice outside today that it's challenging to sit in front of a computer and pound out words, but I'm just not as amped for the Red Sox-Phillies inter-league series going down this weekend in South Philly as I have been in years past.

Or, more precisely, it's probably because the two powerhouses are both living as the cellar dwellers in their respective divisions.

These teams are living proof that money can't buy you love or an assurance of being a kick ass baseball team.

I can't speak for Boston fans, but I'm not overly fretting about our Phils residing in last place on May 18th. Five-straight wins helps the fan confidence level a whole lot, especially when a guy like Carlos Ruiz is swinging the bat so damn well. It's not like sitting four games back from the division leader in the middle of May is the end of the season either.

Cole Hamels (5-1, 2.28) tosses for the Phillies tonight and will face right-hander Daniel Bard (3-4, 4.30) for the BoSox.

I'll be across Pattison Avenue for the other Boston-Philly contest going on, so perhaps that has diminished my excitement for typically hyped Sox-Phils. One thing is for sure though, if you want to get into a wicked pissah of an argument with a Boston fan, Xfinity Live should be the place for that all weekend long.

Then, of course, there's the Papelbon angle which we wrote about yesterday. Looking forward to seeing a blood-thirsty killer this weekend.

If you're looking for more on inter-league play, Bob Brookover has a nice look at the Sox and Phils rivalry losing its luster a bit. And Jayson Stark writes about this being the final year of the current inter-league format. You're going to see a more "NFL-like" structure next year where every team in one division plays every team in another division with a few extra kinks thrown in. Lotta ins, lotta outs. Should be an interesting change. You know how people feel about change. They love it!

7:05 from the Bank. Should be a fantastic evening for a ball game if you're heading down to the yard. The bee-ah for the (game day tailgate) pahty is in the cah.

Today's Polanco-less Lineup:

Source: Phillies agree to 1-year deal with reliever Joaquin Benoit

Source: Phillies agree to 1-year deal with reliever Joaquin Benoit

The Phillies have agreed to a one-year, $7.5 million contract with right-handed reliever Joaquin Benoit, a source tells CSN's Jim Salisbury.

Benoit, 39, was the 11th-oldest pitcher in baseball last season, but he's remained effective as he's aged. Since 2010, Benoit has a 2.40 ERA and 0.97 WHIP, he's struck out 10.0 batters per nine innings while walking 2.8, and allowed a .189 batting average.

Benoit has also maintained his velocity through the years. His fastball averaged 94.2 mph last season, which is actually faster than it was in 2010.

Benoit has been in the majors for 15 years, spending eight with Texas, three with Detroit, two with San Diego, one with Tampa Bay and a half-season apiece with Seattle and Toronto.

Benoit has experience closing but has spent the majority of his career as a setup man. Benoit, along with Hector Neris, figures to have a place in the eighth or ninth inning for the Phillies in 2017, perhaps pushing last year's closer, Jeanmar Gomez, back to the seventh inning.

The Phillies have not yet officially announced the signing of Benoit and will need to clear a spot on the 40-man roster to make room for him.

Not So Fast Joel Embiid: Nik Stauskas's dad claims his son is the original 'The Process'

Not So Fast Joel Embiid: Nik Stauskas's dad claims his son is the original 'The Process'

Philadelphia 76ers sharp shooter Nik Stauskas is back on his "Sauce and Co." podcast with a couple of very special guests: his Momma Ruta and Pappa Paul.

After being overly Canadian in their take on Friday night's brutal loss -- "less than stellar" --  to the Orlando Magic, Mr. Stauskas brings the heat with a fantastic "fun fact."

"Speaking of Joel, I have a fun fact for your audience here," Paul Stauskas says. "I have to give him a new moniker."

He doesn't exactly have a new one yet but...

"'The Process' has already been taken. In 2013 there was a documentary made about Nik called 'Nik Stauskas: The Process.' So if Embiid wants to continue using that, I'm affraid he's going to have to pay a royalty."

                         [Related: Joel Embiid feels 'The Process' is about him]

And if you hit up YouTube, there is is, a 21-minute documentary about a younger Nik Stauskas.

"If this does blow up, there may be some royalty fees he owes me," Nik adds. "I'll have to bring that up to Joel."

"He's got the cheddar," Paul says. "So he can pay up."

You can listen to the Stauskas family podcast in full below.