Phillies-Rockies: What you need to know

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Phillies-Rockies: What you need to know

Phillies (32-37) vs. Rockies (25-41)7:05 p.m. on CSN

For one night on Tuesday, the Phillies set aside their struggles and played like a complete team (see story).

The real challenge is to do it again tonight.

The Phils took Game 1 of their series against the Colorado Rockies with a 7-2 rout. Cole Hamels pitched eight innings, John Mayberry and Carlos Ruiz each hit two-run home runs, and Jimmy Rollins reached base in all four of his plate appearances, scoring three runs.

But they have won two games in a row just once this month, and have not won more than two in a row since May 23-26. Wednesday night's game presents a golden opportunity to start a winning streak against a sinking team.

Starting pitchers
Joe Blanton (6-6, 4.93 ERA) finally snapped out of his funk in his last start, twirling a complete game in Minnesota last Thursday. He allowed one run on seven hits and struck out seven.

In the five starts prior to that effort, Blanton posted a 9.91 ERA, allowing 11 home runs in 26.1 innings.

The right-hander has made only two career starts against Colorado, in which he is 1-0 while giving up six earned runs in 10.1 innings.

Alex White (2-5, 5.56) starts for the Rockies, but he shouldnt last too long. Jim Tracys rotation is in such shambles (last in the majors in team ERA), he has elected to go with a four-man rotation with a 75-pitch limit on his starters.

White has not lasted beyond seven innings in a start this year. He has allowed at least four runs in four of his last five starts. The right-hander has never faced the Phillies during his two years in the MLB.

J-Rolling
Rollins has looked like the J-Roll of old in June. He is hitting .320 with a .909 OPS this month, including a .433 average with six doubles and seven runs in his last seven games.

The shortstops season average has climbed from .240 to .261 during that stretch.

Big John
John Mayberry will start his third straight game, this time at first base. He has homered in three consecutive games and four of his last five to raise his season total to six.

In his career against the Rockies, Mayberry is 3 for 10 with two home runs. He gets a rare start against a righty tonight he is hitting just .213 with one home run against righties this season.

Ups and downs
The Phillies have won 23 of their past 28 meetings with Colorado, including 12 of their last 14 during the regular season at Citizens Bank Park.

Overall, the Rockies have lost 11 of their last 12. Tuesdays lost dropped their June record to 4-12, below the Phillies June record of 5-12.

Colorado leftfielder Carlos Gonzalez is a .452 lifetime hitter against the Phillies, including the 2009 Division Series. He is 4 for 5 off of Blanton, and could return after missing the past two games with a strained left knee.

Sound off
Can a hot Jimmy Rollins carry the Phillies lineup until Chase Utley and Ryan Howard return?

Odubel Herrera appears to be headed to the disabled list

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Odubel Herrera appears to be headed to the disabled list

SAN FRANCISCO — Odubel Herrera missed his third straight game because of a sore left hamstring Thursday night and it sounds as if he's headed to the disabled list.
 
"It's a day-to-day thing," manager Pete Mackanin said before the game against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park. "He might be going on the DL. We're thinking about it."
 
Herrera, riding a 17-game hitting streak, injured the hamstring late in Monday night's game in San Diego and did not play Tuesday or Wednesday. The Phillies filled out their bench for Thursday night's game by bringing versatile utility man Pedro Florimon up from Triple A. To make room for Florimon on the 40-man roster, the Phillies designated reliever Pedro Beato for assignment.
 
The Phillies created room for Florimon on the active roster by sending starting pitcher Nick Pivetta to Triple A. That assignment should be brief as he is expected to come back and pitch in Tuesday's doubleheader against Miami (see story).
 
With Herrera out, Mackanin used rookie Nick Williams in center field. Another rookie, Rhys Hoskins, started in left and Hyun Soo Kim was in right field.
 
Mackanin said Herrera "still has some tenderness" in the hamstring and he was waiting for an update from the team's medical staff on whether to place the outfielder on the DL.
 
It sure sounds like that's coming. Stay tuned.