With a flood advisory in effect in Flushing Meadows, New York since early this morning, the Philadelphia Phillies find themselves in a bit of a dilemma. The effects of a rainy August and September have forced the Phils into two doubleheaders in the last eight days. The team hasn't had an off day since August 28th, in the hours immediately before and after Hurricane Irene.
With showers predicted for much, if not all, of the weekend, the Phillies need to find a way to play these games with the Mets before heading down to Atlanta for their final series of the year on Monday, unless Major League Baseball is open to scrapping a game entirely.
So break out the Mickey Mouse slickers, 'cause we're playing in the rain. The only question is when.
The wet weather is forecast to be less intense and frequent as the weekend progresses, meaning the teams have the option of trying to play through whatever baseballs gods throw at them tonight, attempting to schedule the Phillies's third doubleheader in the last two weeks, or trying to cancel the game altogether. Whatever they choose, at least some of this weekend's action is going to be rain-soaked assuming our friends at The Weather Channel aren't leading us astray. We're not meteorologists, people.
If baseball is played tonight, Cole Hamels is scheduled to pitch, and the Phillies are out to avoid their first seven-game losing streak since June of 2006.
Hamels struggles in New York have been well documented over his career, and the change of scenery offered in the move from Shea Stadium to Citi Field has done little to help matters. Lifetime, Cole is just 1-5 in starts against the Mets in NY. He's 1-4 at Citi Field with a 5.05 ERA in six starts.
In his last appearance in Flushing on July 16th of this year, Hamels was tagged for 7 runs and 8 hits in just 4.1 innings of work. It should be noted that Hamels allowed no more than 2 runs in any of his 4 other starts that month. For whatever reason, there's something about New York that Cole doesn't like. Whatever it is, at least we won't have to deal with it in the postseason…we think.
Standing opposed for the Mets, R.A. Dickey is the owner of an 8-13 record, 3.35 ERA and 1.25 WHIP. Dickey is actually on something of a tear considering he's only allowed 7 runs in his last 5 starts. That stretch includes two seven-inning shutouts. Fortunately, Dickey did surrender 4 earned in 7 innings the last time he pitched against the Phils. The final score of that ballgame on July 15th: 7-2 Philadelphia.
Charlie's 9/23 lineup:
Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Victorino CF, Howard 1B, Ibanez LF, Mayberry RF(D), Ruiz C, Valdez 2B, Hamels P
And for the Mets:
Reyes SS, Tejada 2B, Wright 3B, Bay LF, Pagan CF, Evans 1B, Harris RF, Nickeas C, Dickey P
See you post-game.