Phillies

Tonight's lineup: Tommy Joseph remains; Pedro Florimon starts in RF

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Tonight's lineup: Tommy Joseph remains; Pedro Florimon starts in RF

With Odubel Herrera and Aaron Altherr both on the disabled list, manager Pete Mackanin continues to stick with Tommy Joseph as the Phillies' everyday first basemen.

Joseph is in the lineup batting fifth for Wednesday night's game against the Marlins, with red-hot Rhys Hoskins batting third and playing left field. Hoskins, who shares the same natural position as Joseph, has made just two starts at first since his promotion to the bigs. 

After getting the day off in the Phils' win over the Giants on Sunday, Joseph began to climb out his dreadful 5 for 56 slump in Tuesday's doubleheader with a pair of home runs and three hits overall. Meanwhile, Hoskins continued his hot streak by blasting his sixth home run and bringing his average up to .244, a far cry from his 1 for 13 start.

In right field, Pedro Florimon will make his second start since being called up from Triple A Lehigh Valley. The 30-year-old utility man is 4 for 11 with four RBIs in five game appearances with the Phils. 

Behind the plate, Jorge Alfaro gets the start over Cameron Rupp, who hit a home run in his third straight game in the Phillies' first loss on Tuesday. In 33 plate appearances, Alfaro is hitting .333/.333/.424 with one home run and three RBIs.

Here is the Phils' full lineup:
1. Cesar Hernandez, 2B
2. Freddy Galvis, SS
3. Nick Williams, CF
4. Rhys Hoskins, LF
5. Tommy Joseph, 1B
6. Maikel Franco, 3B
7. Pedro Florimon, RF
8. Jorge Alfaro, C
9. Mark Leiter Jr., P

And for the Marlins: 
1. Dee Gordon, 2B
2. Giancarlo Stanton, RF
3. Christian Yelich, CF
4. Marcell Ozuna, LF
5. J.T. Realmuto, C
6. Derek Dietrich, 3B
7. Tomas Telis, 1B
8. Miguel Rojas, SS
9. Justin Nicolino, P

For more on tonight's game, check out Tom Dougherty's game notes.

At The Yard Podcast: Positives and negatives from Gabe Kapler this season

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At The Yard Podcast: Positives and negatives from Gabe Kapler this season

On this episode of At The Yard, Corey Seidman and Ricky Bottalico debate if the Phillies should try the "opener" strategy. If they do, which pitchers could possibly flourish in that role?

The guys examine Gabe Kapler's first year in Philadelphia. What has he done well? What will he need to improve?

Also, which non-Phillies stood out to Corey and Ricky around the National League? How a pair of Brewers would've looked really good with the Phillies.

1:00 - Should the Phillies consider the "opener" strategy?
7:30 - Are 40-man rosters too many players?
14:00 - The good and bad from Kapler's first year.
22:30 - Any carryover to next season from a good September?
25:00 - The non-Phillie that stood out to Corey and Ricky.

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Don't expect to see Vince Velasquez for long tonight vs. Braves

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Don't expect to see Vince Velasquez for long tonight vs. Braves

The Phillies send Vince Velasquez to the mound tonight to begin their crucial four-game series in Atlanta, but don’t expect to see him for long. It doesn’t fit with how Gabe Kapler has used the back of his rotation in September or with how Velasquez has pitched lately. 

Since Aug. 8, Velasquez has averaged under 4.0 innings per start. In seven games, he’s pitched just 25 1/3 innings. His last time out, he faced 10 batters. 

Velasquez’s numbers against the Braves earlier this season (0-4, 7.41 ERA) were ugly, but it’s a different situation this time. He isn’t being relied on to pitch six innings. He almost certainly will not be relied on to face the top of the order a third time through, especially with left-handed Freddie Freeman in the three-spot. 

Get ready for plenty of pitching changes tonight. However boring or monotonous it may be at times, it’s logical to have lefties face Freeman and Nick Markakis each time from the middle innings onward. Obviously, you want a righty in there for Ronald Acuña Jr. 

With a dozen men in the bullpen this month, the Phillies have averaged nearly 4.5 relievers per game in September. Bet the over on that number tonight. 

Everyone other than Pat Neshek should be available to pitch. Neshek has gone back to back games. He hasn’t pitched three straight nights at any point this season or last. 

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