Phils-Red Sox game notes: Lee vs. Beckett


Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Posted: 12:30 p.m.
Phillies (49-30) vs. Red Sox (45-32), 7:05 on WPHL
Starting Pitchers
Phillies: Cliff Lee (8-5, 2.87) has been the best pitcher in the National League over the last three weeks. In his four most recent starts, Lee has logged 33 innings and allowed just one run on 19 hits. He was the winning pitcher in each of those games, striking out 24 batters and walking just six. Lee has thrown shutouts in both of his last two starts.

Red Sox: After tossing a one-hit shutout against the Rays on June 15, Josh Beckett (6-2, 1.86) missed his last start with the flu. He threw a 50-pitch bullpen session on Saturday and said he is now back at one hundred percent. Beckett has the lowest ERA of any qualified starter in the major leagues.

Previous games
After losing four straight games to San Diego and Pittsburgh, the Red Sox avoided a sweep at the hands of the Pirates with a 4-2 win in the series finale. Andrew Miller got the win in his second big-league start this season, allowing one earned run over six strong innings. Adrian Gonzalez went 2-for-3 in the game, upping his league-leading average to .361.

Since dropping two out of three to the Mariners last week, the Phils have won two straight series. In their most recent game, Roy Halladay notched his 10th win of the season as the Phils beat the As 3-1. Over their last 10 contests, the Phils are 6-4.

Last season, the Red Sox grabbed four of six head-to-head matchups, outscoring the Phils 39-17.

In 10 career at-bats against Lee, Gonzalez has seven hits, including three homers and a doubleRyan Howard and Chase Utley have 12 combined hits in 38 at-bats (.316) with three total home runs and 10 RBIsPlacido Polanco, however, has had trouble with Beckett in his career, going 4-for-24 (.167) lifetime against the righthanderIn 10 starts against the Red Sox, Lee is 2-4 with a 4.06 ERABeckett has started 17 games against the Phils lifetime, going 8-4 with a 3.98 ERA.
Whos hot?
Jimmy Rollins is coming off a 4-for-4 performance on Sunday, his first four-hit game in two yearsGonzalez is working on a seven-game hit streak, a span over which hes totaled 15 hits and nine RBIsDaniel Bard has allowed no runs and just four hits over his last 13 appearances out of the bullpen.
The Phillies and Red Sox are the owners of two of the three best records in baseball, and many think this series offers a potential October preview. The Phils are the toughest pitching team in baseball with a 3.05 ERA, while Bostons offense boasts the top batting average (.277) and most runs scored (409) in the majors.

The Phils' bullpen took another hit Tuesday when Ryan Madson was placed on the disabled list with a bruised hand.
Sound off
Which will be more valuable when the playoffs roll around: the Phils pitching staff or the Red Soxs offense?

Related: Phillies place Madson on DL with bruised handOctober preview? Phillies set for Red Sox test

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