Phillies Blog – Davey and The Statman Contributors - Phillies blog will feature renowned Sports Handicapper Davey Sharpe and his partner Mike the Statman.  Combined they operate a successful sports handicapping business together and are both lifelong Phillies fans.

Cliff Lee DOES own LA recently. . . not necessarily from a W/L standpoint – but his numbers against the Dodgers are brilliant.  Going into the game, in 8 outings vs LA, he was carrying a 1.48 ERA and a shockingly low WHIP of 0.77.  Which combined means he allows very few runs and VERY few baserunners.  He fanned 10 and gave up 0 ER through 8 – before turning the game over to Manship for cleanup work.  Oh – he also walked none.  So 4 hits, 0 walks, 0 runs, and 10K’s.  And retired 20 straight in the game.  I like it. 

Lee got staked to an early lead when Ruiz got his first RBI’s of 2014 with a 2 run double in the first – Ruiz also had a HR – and Mr Howard went deep again!!  Its great seeing Howard get going.  Another 2 RBI’s for him last night bringing his total to 12 for the year.  He homered off Maholm – a lefty – and that is VERY good news for Howard.  If he gets going and starts to spray balls around the park as he did in the scorefest in Colorado – and can go long 8-10 times a month.  That will go a LONG way into taking this team into contention into the summer. 

Note the lineup switch last night.  Tony Gwynn leading off in Center – and I am waiting for that move to become more regular.   I like Gwynn – I like his patience at the plate and I like his ability to work counts and make pitchers work early in the game. Gwynn drew that leadoff walk last night which immediately put Maholm in the hole.  That was the initial catalyst for the 2-0 lead that they gave Lee to work with.  Gwynn didn’t have a great night overall – but a leadoff walk to start the game?  That’s what I like to see out of the leadoff spot.   Also Ruiz to cleanup last night – has Sandberg looking like a genius.  The lineup changes last night seemed to work like a charm – so lets see if that same lineup can remain in place and perform the same tonight – as the Phils face another tough lefty in LA.

Our 3rd base spot is a problem.  Period.  Hoping this is no news to our GM, but 3rd base needs to be fixed.  And Davey and The Statman have a couple excellent ideas – stay tuned as we pay close attention to that spot

Tonight Burnett goes against Hyun –Jin Ryu.  Burnett is having some success this year, but his 2 road starts haven’t treated him well.  2 areas of concentration tonight for Burnett is to keep the ball down, and do NOT issue free passes to this team.  LA hits Right Handers well this year so far – but they are not great at drawing walks.  So keep that ball down in the zone and throw strikes AJ.  Ryu will be tough tonight.  He is allowing VERY few men on base and allows HR’s hardly ever.  The last time he pitched in at home however, he was teed up pretty good by SF getting chased in the 2nd inning.  Right now the Phillies bats are clicking on all cylinders so I would love to see a repeat performance of last night with the same group of guys getting another shot at an LA lefty.

Also to note – Stairs back in the broadcast booth on the road trip – and seems to be settling into a nice rhythm with play by play guy Tom Mcarthy.  I was unsure of the booth during the first week of the season – but both Stairs and Moyer are finding their stride I think.  And I can’t help but wonder if Stairs’ comment to Ruiz in the pre-game got him fired up a little to knock the cover off the ball last night . . . hmmmmm!

Let’s get a double win in Phila tonight – Flyers first and Phils next!!!!!!  GO PHILA!!!!