By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Phillies will look for an improved performance against the Indians on Tuesday night as they open a two-game, interleague series with Cleveland at Citizens Bank Park.
The first time these two teams met this season was an unmitigated disaster for the Phillies. They dropped two games in Cleveland ( April 30th and May 1st) by a combined score of 20-2. Roy Halladay was bombed in one game (14-2) and Cliff Lee was hit around in the other (6-0).
In this series opener, it will be Jonathan Pettibone getting the start for the Phillies. The rookie right-hander has pitched solid baseball since his promotion from AAA, going 2-0 in four starts with a 3.63 ERA. Last time out he got a no-decison in San Francisco, allowing three runs in 5 2/3 innings of a game the Phillies eventually lost in ten innings, 4-3.
The Indians will give the ball to veteran left-hander Scott Kazmir. He is 2-1 in four starts with a 4.87 ERA. Kazmir was once one of the top young pitchers in baseball with Tampa Bay (he started Games #1 and #5 in the 2008 World Series against the Phillies), but his career went into a tailspin and he ended up in the Atlantic League in 2012, pitching for the Sugar Land Skeeters. However, he has returned to the bigs and done a pretty good job in the Indians rotation here in 2013.
The Phillies are 18-21 on the season and they come into play tonight in third place in National League East, 4 1/2 games behind first-place Atlanta.
KYW’s Matt Leon spoke with Jim Rosenhaus, a member of the Indians radio broadcast team, to get his take on this series.