Phillies Can Clinch Playoff Berth Tonight with Hamels On Hill

Phillies Can Clinch Playoff Berth Tonight with Hamels On Hill

It's been pretty safe to assume the Phillies were going to make the postseason for a couple of weeks now, but a win tonight (or a loss by St. Louis) will make it official.

Cole Hamels (14-7, 2.60) takes the hill for the Phillies and hopes to earn his 15th win of the season which would match a career high. He was 15-5 in 2007.

The Astros will counter with former Phillie and massively struggling left-hander J.A. Happ (5-15, 5.77). The Phils have an NL-best 30-9 (.769) record in games against left-handed starters. Charlie Manuel will try to increase those numbers tonight by starting John Mayberry Jr. in center while giving Shane Victorino a blow.

If Roy Oswalt and the Phils couldn't stop Brett Myers and the Astros, Cole Hamels vs. J.A. Happ has to be the right recipe for a Phillies victory, doesn't it?

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Tonight's Lineup:

11 Jimmy Rollins, ss
27 Placido Polanco, 3b
3  Hunter Pence,rf
6  Ryan Howard, 1b
15 John Mayberry, cf
10 Ben Francisco, lf
51 Carlos Ruiz, c
5  Pete Orr, 2b
35 Cole Hamels, p

First pitch scheduled for 8:05

photo by Colleen0313

Temple Men’s Basketball adds two players to 2016-17 roster

Temple Men’s Basketball adds two players to 2016-17 roster

Temple men’s basketball coach Fran Dunphy announced that the team has added two players to its 2016-17 roster. 

The Owls will announce the two new transfers, junior’s Isaiah Lewis and Steve Leonard, Thursday night at the Liacouras Center at the team’s Cherry and White Night. 

Lewis comes to Temple after playing for Casper College in Wyoming last season, where he averaged 5.5 points and 2.2 assists per game. Before his stint at Casper College, the 6-4 guard also played at Lee Junior College in Texas, and averaged 10.0 points and 4.7 assists per game.

Leonard, a 6-6 guard from Collegeville, Pa., played two seasons at Ursinus College. He averaged 5.6 points over 43 games during his career at Ursinus. 

Brett Brown: Sixers' Nik Stauskas set for 'breakout year'

Brett Brown: Sixers' Nik Stauskas set for 'breakout year'

CAMDEN, N.J. — The irony of Nik Stauskas’ reputation as a three-point shooter is that he doesn’t view himself that way.

Stauskas was drafted eighth overall by the Kings in 2014 after shooting 44.1 percent from three over two years at Michigan. But that’s not how he envisioned himself being in the pros.

“It’s crazy,” Stauskas said after practice Thursday. “I know I was a great shooter coming out of Michigan, but I don’t consider myself a shooter. I consider myself a gamer. I don’t think I’m an effective NBA player when I just stand and spot up and shoot threes. That’s really not my game.”

Stauskas has struggled to find offensive consistency in the NBA. The third-year two-guard averaged 32.4 percent from long range in his first two seasons. He wasn’t reliable as a knockdown shooter and bounced in and out of the starting lineup last season.

Rather than being a finesse player, Brett Brown encouraged Stauskas to get aggressive. Brown wanted to a see an edge from Stauskas and not hold back at the basket.

Stauskas displayed that side to his game on opening night against the Thunder. In 23 minutes off the bench, he scored 13 points on 5-for-6 shooting. His only miss came on a three-point attempt. His 83.3 shooting percentage was a single-game career high.

“He was cocky,” Brown said. “He was in attack mode. He was not afraid to put it to the floor and get to the rim. I feel like he’s got a real chance to have a breakout year. We need him to have a breakout year.”

The Sixers picked up the options on Stauskas, Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor on Thursday.

“I think the statement the club made on his contract lets him probably have a little bit more comfort on what we think of him,” Brown said. “I was really happy with his swagger last night.”

Stauskas is figuring out his role on the Sixers this season. It is one that can change often given injuries. A key to being successful, whether he is on the perimeter or at the rim, is feeling confident and in a rhythm on the floor.

“I had fun out there,” Stauskas said. “More than anything, I think yesterday was the first time in a while that I’ve really enjoyed myself out there and had a smile on my face.”