By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It’s just been an awful month of June for the Phillies as they have gone just 2-8. That includes losing two out of three over the weekend in Baltimore.
The Phillies will continue this run of interleague play tonight as they open a three-game series in Minnesota against the Twins.
The Phillies (NL East) and Twins (AL Central) are both in last place, but while the Phillies have bottomed out here as of late amid a flurry of Ty Wigginton errors and opponent walk-off hits, the arrow is actually trending up for the Twins as they have won six of eight.
On the mound for the Phillies, it will be right-hander Kyle Kendrick. He is 2-5 this season with a 4.44 ERA. He has never faced the Twins in his career.
Minnesota will counter with right-hander Nick Blackburn. He is 2-4 with a terrible ERA of 7.75. In his only career start against the Phillies, Blackburn was bombed for 8 runs in just 1 2/3 innings of work in a game the Phils won 9-5 back on June 18th, 2010, at Citizens Bank Park.
In that game, which brings back memories of a simpler time, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard combined to go six for nine (Howard was 4-4) with three home runs (two for Howard), five runs scored and seven RBI. Howard actually finished just a single short of the cycle. Of course, this just in, neither Howard nor Utley will be in the line-up tonight.
KYW’s Matt Leon spoke with La Velle Neal, Twins beat writer for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, to get the skinny on this Minnesota squad.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.