Today's Lineup: Righty-heavy lineup means Odubel Herrera's 1st day off

Today's Lineup: Righty-heavy lineup means Odubel Herrera's 1st day off

The Phillies will go with a right-handed heavy lineup in Sunday afternoon's series rubber match against the Nationals in the nation's capital (see game notes).

And the reason for that is simple: lefty Gio Gonzalez opposes Phillies starter, Jerad Eickhoff.

Daniel Nava, a switch-hitter, will get the start in right and Aaron Altherr will get the start in center, giving Odubel Herrera his first day off the young season. Herrera is 3 for 11 with two walks in his career vs. Gonzalez.

In an interesting move, Phils manager Pete Mackanin is giving Brock Stassi, a lefty, the start in left field. It marks Stassi's first major-league start in the outfield as his previous starts came at first in place of Tommy Joseph. Sunday will mark the first time Stassi and Joseph are in the lineup at the same time. Stassi's start means Howie Kendrick gets the day off as well.

With a brand-new outfield from Saturday's game, there are a handful of shifts in Sunday's lineup.

Sunday's full lineups can be found below:

1. Cesar Hernandez 2B
2. Daniel Nava RF
3. Maikel Franco 3B
4. Tommy Joseph 1B
5. Cameron Rupp C
6. Aaron Altherr CF
7. Brock Stassi LF
8. Freddy Galvis 2B
9. Jerad Eickhoff P

1. Adam Eaton CF
2. Anthony Rendon 3B
3. Bryce Harper RF
4. Daniel Murphy 2B
5. Adam Lind 1B
6. Jayson Werth LF
7. Matt Wieters C
8. Wilmer Difo SS
9. Gio Gonzalez P

Mets promote Tim Tebow to high Class A St. Lucie

Mets promote Tim Tebow to high Class A St. Lucie

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Tim Tebow is moving up and heading south -- to some very familiar territory.

Tebow has been promoted to the New York Mets' high Class A affiliate in St. Lucie, Florida. The 29-year-old Tebow led the University of Florida to two national championships in football and won the 2007 Heisman Trophy during his stellar career with the Gators.

"I'm not sure how much of an additional challenge it will be," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said Sunday in San Francisco. "Clearly it's a step up. I certainly think he can handle it."

Tebow began his first pro baseball season with Class A Columbia, drawing huge crowds at home and wherever the Fireflies went in the South Atlantic League. He entered his final Fireflies game batting .222 with three home runs and 23 RBIs.

"I wouldn't say he has excelled there, but at the same time, what he's done there -- given all the circumstances -- justified the promotion to Port St. Lucie," Alderson said.

Phillies play wait-and-see game with Jerad Eickhoff and Howie Kendrick

Phillies play wait-and-see game with Jerad Eickhoff and Howie Kendrick

PHOENIX -- Jerad Eickhoff and Howie Kendrick both tested their achy body parts on Sunday.

Eickhoff, on the disabled list with an upper back strain, threw two 15-pitch "innings" in the bullpen and was pleased with the results.

"It felt good, no sense of pulling," he said. "We'll see how it feels tomorrow."

Eickhoff's turn in the rotation will come up Wednesday in Seattle. If he can't make the start, Mark Leiter Jr. will. Leiter pitched six shutout innings in his first big-league start on Friday night.

As for Kendrick, who is battling left hamstring tightness, he was not in the starting lineup for a fourth straight game on Sunday. He did run some sprints under the watchful eye of head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan before the game.

"He still feels it, but he's available to pinch-hit," manager Pete Mackanin said.

Is this getting close to being a situation that would require a trip to the disabled list?

"Hopefully not," Mackanin said. "Hopefully he's better tomorrow. If not, I'm hoping he can at least DH in Seattle (on Tuesday). He's one of our best hitters and I want to get him in there. But I've got to be cautious."

Kendrick already spent six weeks on the disabled list with an abdominal injury earlier this season. He's played well when healthy, hitting .355 (43 for 121) with a .414 on-base percentage in 31 games.

The Phillies need to be certain that Kendrick is healthy when they turn him loose because he could hold some trade value in the month of July and a full-blown injury would hurt that.