Dom Brown Back in the Lineup for Today's Day Game in New York

Dom Brown Back in the Lineup for Today's Day Game in New York

As expected following Cody Asche coming up lame at first base (video) after a single in the seventh last night, the young third baseman is out of the lineup this afternoon to give his strained hamstring some rest. And as Dom Brown's absence from the starting nine showed over the past few days, the Phillies are currently in no position to rush their young talents back from injury only to play in quasi meaningless games.

But Brown is feeling good enough this afternoon to the point where Ryne Sandberg has penciled him in as the starter in left. He'll bat cleanup.

Sandberg talked earlier in the week about the bench time being a little challenging for Brown:

"He's champing at the bit a little bit," Sandberg said. "He's anxious. That's why he's coming out here to test it and see where he's at. I know that he's anxious."

Ryne will trot out yet another new lineup this afternoon, this one including Kevin Frandsen in the two hole and John McDonald down in the eight spot and playing shortstop.

Can't miss this day game.

It's Ethan Martin (2-2, 6.33) taking on right-hander Carlos Torres (2-2, 2.96) in a 1:10 start time.  Beating the Mets is imperative.

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

What is there to say about the Philadelphia Phillies?

In doing my usual postgame perusal of the Internet after their 7-2 loss on Wednesday night, I visited Phillies.com to see what kind of "highlights" they could have possibly posted from another crushing defeat at the hands of the Colorado Rockies.

Thankfully, the first thing that caught my eye was a video titled, "Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby."

It was not Larry Andersen in the Phanatic's arms. Nor me.

And that's the Phillies season in a nutshell.

"You gotta question the parenting skills here," John Kruk said on the telecast. And he's right! What kind of parent would raise their kid to be a Philly sports fan?!?

The Phillies now have the worst record in all of baseball. They're 4-20 in their last 24 games. It's their worst start to a season since 1960.

Even the Phanatic doesn't have enough popcorn to mask all the pain.

If you want to read about the upbeat approach Pete Mackanin is taking, go give this a gander.

"In a long season, these things sometimes happen," Mackanin told reporters. "I remember Atlanta, the first half last year, was terrible. They had a real good second half. I believe we just need to get something going. We're going to put something together. I believe that."

That makes one of us.

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

The future of Villanova basketball just got brighter.

Brandon Slater, a 6-foot-6 wing and highly touted 2018 recruit, told Scout.com on Wednesday night that he has verbally committed to the Wildcats.

He later made the announcement on Twitter.

Among the 2018 recruiting class, Slater, a product of Paul VI Catholic High School in Fairfax, Virginia, is ranked in the top 30 by Scout.com and top 50 by ESPN.com. He's slated as a four-star talent by both media outlets.

Per ESPN, Slater had offers from Louisville, Maryland, Miami, Syracuse, USC and Virginia Tech. He is Villanova's first commitment for 2018.

"Going up there it just feels like a second home," Slater said, via Evan Daniels of Scout.com. "It gives me a good vibe. It's nothing like all the other schools. I just feel like a Villanova guy. It feels like PVI. It's already home."

Slater and Villanova head coach Jay Wright expressed their excitement on Twitter.