After being activated earlier in the day, Shane Victorino will get the start in center and bat fifth tonight as Cliff Lee (9-6, 2.82) and the Phillies take on Matt Garza (4-7, 3.97) and the Cubs. As you can see from the above photo, taken by the Inquirer's Matt Gelb, Shane is ready to go do some yard work tonight in the Wrigley outfield.
Victorino was curious as to how much a riding lawn mower would cost to purchase, because he's currently paying the hefty price of $75 a week to get his cut. Longtime Phillies beat writer Jim Salisbury then offered to undercut that and mow Shane's lawn for the low, low price of $60 a week -- a flat out bargain. Sully does, after all, know a thing or two about horticulture.
Charlie Manuel said before the game that he's been encouraged by John Mayberry Jr.'s play as of late and he thought about giving him the start tonight, but with right-handed Garza's big hook, he really likes getting lefties in the lineup.
The full lineup: Jimmy Rollins, Michael Martinez, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Shane Victorino, Raul Ibanez, Domonic Brown, Carlos Ruiz, and Clifton Phifer Lee.
Oswalt Feels Great
Roy Oswalt threw almost 50 pitches off a mound today at Wrigley and said he feels the best his body has felt since spring training and was very encouraged by his bullpen session. He will throw another bullpen session on Friday, looking to up his pitches to ~60-65, and the next step after that would likely be a rehab start.
An early August return sounds about right if everything continues smoothly.
Random Coolness: was trying out a new iPhone app prior to this evening's game. Check out this 360 degree view of Wrigley from right above the Phillies dugout.
It look like the Eagles have found their replacement for Greg Lewis.
According to ESPN's Adam Caplan, the Eagles are expected to hire Rams receivers/passing game coordinator Mike Groh.
The news that the Eagles fired Lewis came out on Jan. 9 and the team has been looking for a replacement. They reportedly interviewed Groh and Bills receivers coach Sanjay Lal.
Groh, 45, spent the 2016 season with the Rams after three years as the Bears' receivers coach. Groh is available because the Rams switched head coaches, bringing in Sean McVay.
Before coming to the NFL, Groh was a longtime coach at the college level. He is the son of former Virginia head coach Al Groh and eventually became an offensive coordinator under his father before bouncing from Alabama to Louisville and then back to Alabama before heading to the NFL.
Groh was actually the quarterback at Virginia in the 90s before his father ever coached there. Groh's first coaching job was under his father as assistant coach with the Jets in 2000, when Al Groh was named their head coach for the season.
If the Eagles are looking to sign a big-name free agent at wide receiver, there could be a reunion of sorts in Philly. During his four seasons as an NFL receivers coach, Groh has worked with Alshon Jeffery and Kenny Britt, who are two of the top receivers who will be available.
The Eagles started their season with a first-round pick, two second-round picks and a third-round pick at wide receiver, but their unit was one of the worst in the NFL. Jordan Matthews was consistent, but tight end Zach Ertz was the team's leading receiver.
It's unlikely Groh will have the same unit to work with as Lewis did in 2016, but it is likely Groh will be expected to get more out of his group in 2017.