Thursday, May 14, 2009

Philadelphia Phillies Need Pitching To Step Up Against LA Dodgers

by Steve Prudente

In October of last year, the Phillies defeated the Dodgers to win their first National League title in 15 years. You know the rest of the story.

Tonight, the Dodgers will begin a three-game visit to Citizens Bank Park, their first trip to Philadelphia since last year's NLCS.

Obviously, it's not the playoffs, but for the Phillies, it might as well be. Los Angeles comes to Philadelphia sporting a 22-11 record, good enough for the best in baseball. Meanwhile, the Phillies are mired at a game over .500 with a 15-14 record.

It's no secret that the Phillies have been inconsistent in all facets of their game so far this season, but this is a chance for them to show that they can compete against a strong team. A playoff mentality sometimes brings out the best in players, and it's that kind of attitude that they will need to be successful against the Dodgers.

Not to be overlooked is the absence of the Dodgers' superstar slugger Manny Ramirez, which is no doubt an advantage the Phillies will look to exploit. That topic will be explored ad-nauseum by everyone else, so let's look at the other side of things.

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