Cubs, Phils To Close Out Weekend Series Live Today On TBS With Rubber Match

Courtesy: Turner Sports

National League foes the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies will close out their three-game weekend series this afternoon as Major League Baseball’s 2018 season inches closer to its finale.

The Phillies took the series’ opener Friday 2-1 over Chicago.  That game was a pitcher’s duel as it wasn’t until the top of the 5th inning that the game’s first run was scored by Chicago. the Phillies tied it up in the bottom of the 6th with a run of their own.  After Philadelphia tied it up, the game was forced into extra innings, and the Phillies would take advantage of the overtime setup, adding one more run for the 2-1 final.

Pat Neshek (2-1) was credited with the win for the Phillies while Steve Cishek (4-2) took the loss for Chicago. This was despite fellow Chicago pitcher Jose Quintana (11-9) pitching six innings in the game. Quintana allowed just one run on three hits, one earned run, and one walk while striking out seven Phillies batters.

Philadelphia starter Nick Pivetta (7-10) meanwhile was almost as solid as Quintana, allowing only one run and one earned run on five hits while walking three Cubs batters and striking out six.

Chicago controlled Game Two right from the start, scoring two runs in the first.  two more followed in the third with three more runs coming in total between the seventh and ninth inning.  Philadelphia was held to just one run in the game. That lone run came from outfielder Odubel Hererra.

The Phillies’ woes weren’t limited to just that lone run.  Pitcher reliever Austin Davis had his cheat sheet taken by umpire Joe West during Saturday’s game.  The sheet told Davis how to throw to the Cubs’ batters, and while not illegal, should not have been in Davis’ possession according to MLB rules section 6.02 (c) (7), which bans pitchers having any “foreign substance” on their person during a game.

Jon Lester (14-5) is expected to get the start for the Cubs in today’s series finale.  Lester’s last time on the mound was Tuesday against the Mets, and he had a bit of a rough time in that game.  Over the course of six innings, he allowed three runs and three earned runs on five hits while walking three batters, allowing one home run and striking out three Mets batters.

Aaron Nola (15-3) is currently expected to get the start for Philadelphia.  His last time on the mound was also Tuesday, in this case against Washington.  The Nats took that game 5-4 in nine.  While Nola got the start, Neshek took the loss in the game for the Phillies.

Nola had a rough time in Tuesday’s game, pitching seven innings.  Over the course of that time, he allowed two runs, one earned run and two walks on four hits while striking out eight Washington batters.

Looking at each team’s overall stats, the numbers don’t favor fully one team over another. Philadelphia is playing host to Chicago for the series, and has been far better at home so far this season than at home, going 43-24 at home and 29-38 on the road.

Chicago meanwhile has also proven better at home than on the road, going 44-24 at home and 35-31 on the road so far this season.

Chicago has gone 8-2 in its last 10 games and sits atop the National League Central standings with just a narrow 3.5 game lead over second place St. Louis.  Philadelphia meanwhile sits second in the National League East, but has gone 4-6 in its last 10 games.  At the same time though, Philadelphia is only two games behind the division-leading Atlanta, so this afternoon’s series closer will have major playoff implications for both teams.

Brian Anderson will have the call for this afternoon’s broadcast on TBS.  He will be joined in the booth by analyst Ron Darling for additional commentary.  Coverage is currently scheduled to start at 1:30 p.m. and the game will be blacked out in Chicago.

More information on TBS’s Major League Baseball coverage is available online now along with more MLB news at:

 

Website: http://www.tbs.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TBSNetwork

Twitter: http://twitter.com/tbsnetwork

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

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Mets, Phillies To Close Out Five-Game Series Sunday Night On ESPN’s ‘SNB’

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has a National League East divisional matchup on tap in this week’s edition of its weekly Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast.

The Philadelphia Phillies (68-54) will host the New York Mets (52-69) in the closer of the teams’ five-game series.  The series started Thursday with a one and one double-header between the NL East foes.  The Mets routed the Phillies in the first game 24-6 while the Phillies won game two 9-6.

Philadelphia took control of the series on Friday, defeating the Mets 4-2.  The Mets came back Saturday and evened things back up at two games each with a 3-1 win over the Phillies.  That means Sunday night’s game will be the rubber match between the teams.

Nick Pivetta (7-9) is expected to get the start on the mound for the Phillies Sunday night. He was last on the mound August 14 against the Boston Red Sox.  The Bosox won that game 2-1 with Philadelphia’ Tommy Hunter taking the loss.

Pivetta was strong in that game, pitching six innings, allowing only one run on three hits, one walk and one earned run while striking out six and allowing only one home run in that time.  So he will be looking to get the Phils back in the “W” column in this series’ finale against the Mets, whose playoff hopes at this point are nil.

Jason Vargas (2-8) is expected to get the start for the Mets Sunday night.  The 35-year-old has had a rough season so far, pitching a total of 53.1 innings in 13 games with an ERA of 8.10.  His last time on the mound was August 14 against Baltimore.

The Orioles took the win over the Mets in that game, 6-3.  Vargas’ struggles continued in that game as he allowed two runs on five hits, two earned runs while walking three batters and striking out only one over six innings.  He also allowed one home run in that time.

Just by the pitchers’ numbers, one would think Sunday night’s game is in the Phillies’ favor, but New York has been a surprise this weekend against Philadelphia.  That could be because the Mets know they have nothing to lose and don’t want to finish in the bottom of the league, causing them to play harder.

With the two losses to the Phillies this weekend, the Mets ended their two-game losing ski and back back into the “W” column, though win or lose it won’t be enough to help the team’s playoff hopes.  Philadelphia is 41-20 at home and 27-34 on the road so far this season. Saturday’s loss to the Mets drops the Phillies to 68-55 on the season, still keeping the team in the post season hunt.  The Mets will still be playing with a ire in their bellies because they have at least something to prove since they won’t be in the playoffs, so Sunday night’s game could go either way.

Matt Vasgersian will have the call for Sunday’s game.  He will be joined in the booth by analysts Alex Rodriguez and Jessica Mendoza for additional commentary.  Reporter Buster Olney will have all of the game’s latest news and interviews.

Jon Sciambi and Chris Singleton will cover the game on ESPN Radio.  The NL East matchup will also be simulcast on ESPN Deportes and on the ESPN app.

Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell will be preceded by Baseball TonightSunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet at 7 p.m. ET.with Karl Ravech at the helm.  Ravech will be joined by analysts Mark Teixeira, David Ross and Tim Kurkjian for additional commentary.

More information on ESPN’s MLB coverage is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.espn.com/mlb

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPN

Twitter: http://twitter.com/espn

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.comphilspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN To Air Special MLB Double Header On Independence Day

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN will celebrate America’s birthday this year with a celebration of the country’s national pastime.

Network officials announced recently the network will carry a special Major League Baseball double header on July 4th.  The schedule starts with a National League inter-divisional matchup between the Phillies and Pirates at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN.  American League opponents Boston and Texas round out the day’s double header schedule beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

Rotations and pitchers have not been announced for either game.  The July 4 matchup between the Phillies and Pirates will be the second of a four-game series between the NL foes while it the AL showdown between the Red Sox and Rangers will be the second in a three-game series between those teams.

More information on ESPN’s special Independence Day double header schedule is available online now along with all of the latest MLB headlines at http://www.espn.com/mlb.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Rock Carnival Reveals Expanded Daily Lineup

Courtesy: Adrenaline PR/Stan Levinstone Presents/GameLoud

Courtesy: Adrenaline PR/Stan Levinstone Presents/GameLoud

There is a new update on the 2016 Rock Carnival festival.

Organizers with the Rock Carnival music festival have announced the daily lineups for this year’s edition of the festival.  They also announced that the festival’s lineup has been expanded with the addition of even more acts to the bill.  The three-day festival will be held at FirstEnergy Park, the home of the Lakewood Blue Claws, in Lakewood, New Jersey.  It kicks off Friday, September 30th with performances by Alice Cooper, Clutch, Zakk Sabbath, and others.  Saturday’s lineup features performances by Texas Hippie Coalition, Fuel, Monster Magnet, Overkill, Ace Frehley, and others.  The festival wraps Sunday, October 2nd with performances by newly added acts 10 Years, Punk Meadows, Sebastian Bach, Life of Agony, Jim Breuer and the Loud & Rowdy, and others.  Even more acts are expected to be announced in the days to come.  The current lineup for this year’s festival is noted below.

 

Friday, September 30th

Alice Cooper

Clutch

Zakk Sabbath

Blue Oyster Cult

Almost Queen

Alive! ’75

Kyng & More

Saturday, October 1st

Twisted Sister

Daughtry

Overkill

Ace Frehley

Fuel

Monster Magnet

Jackyl

Punky Meadows

Shaman’s Harvest

Texas Hippie Coalition

Zebra

Four By Fate

Jester

American Angel

Killcode

Cycle of Pain

Sunday, October 2nd

????

Life Of Agony

Sebastian Bach

Jim Breuer and the Loud & Rowdy

10 Years

Trixter

Doro

Bullet Boys

Legion

River Monsters

+ more TBA!

 

The performances for this year’s festival will take place on multiple stages, including two side-by-side main stages.  Audiences will have general admission access to the stadium field where the stages will be located.  The festival’s “Classic” Friday Night celebration is new to the festival this year.  It features performances from a number of top name cover bands, one of which—Zakk Sabbath—features none other than Zakk Wylde along with bassist Blasko (Ozzy Osbourne, ex-Rob Zombie), and drummer Joey Castillo (ex-Queens of the Stone Age) performing a number of classic Black Sabbath hits.  Also on the “Classic” Friday night bill are: Almost Queen, and Voyage (Journey tribute band).

Reserved weekend, General Admission weekend, single day, VIP passes, and Skybox tickets for this years Rock Carnival are available for purchase now.  Reserved and General Admission + single day tickets can be purchased online now here.  Single day tickets are $44.99.  Children under 16 are admitted free of charge.  Adult Carnival Only Admission is $15 in advance and $20 on-site.  Carnival Only admission does not include stadium access.  VIP packages and Skybox tickets can be purchased online via SoundRink.

The Rock Carnival is produced by Stan Levinstone Presents and GameLoud.  More information on The Rock Carnival is available online now along with all of the latest news on its lineup and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://therockcarnival.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TheRockCarnival

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TheRockCarnival

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Cubs, Pirates Face Off In Key NL Central Matchup Tonight On MNB

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

The Pittsburgh Pirates took 2 of 3 against the Cincinnati Reds over the weekend, winning 4 – 1 and 5 – 1 Friday and Saturday respectively.  But the Reds got a bit of revenge Sunday night, taking the last of the teams’ 3-game series 6 – 5 in extra innings.  Now after that tough loss the Pirates look to regroup as they are set to face yet another NL Central foe this week in the form of the Chicago Cubs.  The teams face off this week in a 3-game series that begins tonight.  And ESPN will have full coverage of the series’ opener in this week’s edition of Monday Night Baseball presented by USAA.

Tonight’s game (and the series in whole) will have major implications for both teams even this early in the season.  That is because there’s more than just NL pride on the line.  The team’s cross city rivals, the White Sox, currently sit at 18 – 8 on the season so far.  The Cubs on the other hand are 17 – 6 so far on the season.  In the NL ranks, the Cubs are currently trying to hold off the second place Washington Nationals (17 – 7).  A win tonight (and wins Tuesday and Wednesday) would help the Cubs pad their lead over the Nats.  It would also help the Cubs in their rivalry with the White Sox.  On the other side of the ball, a win in tonight’s series opener (combined with wins Tuesday and Wednesday) would help the Pirates as they battle with the Phillies and the Cubs for position.

Gerrit Cole is currently expected to start for the Pirates tonight.  He is 2- 2 so far on the season.  His last time on the mound was six days ago on April 26th against Colorado.  The Pirates routed the Rockies in that game 9 – 4 with Cole pitching six innings.  Cole didn’t have the greatest game, allowing 4 runs and 2 earned runs on 8 hits, and 1 home run.  He walked 2 and struck out 3.  This was all against 27 total batters.  Thanks to good fielding on Pittsburgh’s side and just as many problems for Colorado’s bullpen, the Pirates were able to pull off the win.

Starting for the Cubs tonight will be Jason Hammel.  Hammel is currently 3 – 0 on the season.  He has had plenty of time to rest and prepare for tonight’s game.  That’s because his last time on the mound was seven days ago against the Reds.  The Cubs blanked the Reds in that game 9 – 0.  Hammel was credited with the win having pitched 6 innings.  He was in top form in the game, too, allowing 0 runs on only 3 hits.  He walked only 2 of the 23 batters that he faced and struck out 7 while allowing 0 home runs and 0 earned runs.  Red pitcher Alfredo Simon meanwhile struggled mightily in the game, pitching only 2.2 innings before being pulled.  In that short time, he allowed 8 runs, 8 earned runs, and 2 home runs on 10 hits.  He walked only 1 of the 18 batters that he faced and struck out only 3.  So needless to say that Hammel will be on his A-game tonight.

Adding to the interest for tonight’s game (and this week’s series) is that while Pittsburgh and Chicago are evenly matched in their home records—Pittsburgh is 7 – 4 at home so far this season to Chicago’s 7 – 3—the visiting Cubs are 10 – 3 on the road so far to Pittsburgh’s 8 – 6 road record.  Chicago is 7 – 3 in its last 10 games while Pittsburgh is 8 – 2 in its last 10.  So when all of the numbers are added up, they show tonight’s game to be full of fireworks for both sides.  The same can be said of Tuesday and Wednesday’s games, too.

Dave Flemming will be in the booth for tonight’s game.  He will be joined by analysts Dallas Braden and Eduardo Perez for additional commentary.  ESPN Deportes will simulcast the game for the network’s Spanish-speaking audiences.  More information on tonight’s game is available online now along with all of the latest MLB headlines at:

 

Website: http://espn.go.com/mlb

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPNBaseballTonight

Twitter: http://twitter.com/BBTN

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Adds Reds, Cubs Matchup To Its SNB Broadcast Schedule

MLB-on-ESPN_2012

ESPN announced the latest addition to its weekly Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast schedule this week. On June 14th, ESPN’s flagship baseball broadcast will come live from Chicago as the Cubs host the Reds in an NL Central showdown.

ESPN’s June 14th broadcast will be the closer for the teams’ four-game series, which kicks off Thursday, June 11th. Details for each team’s starting lineup will be released soon. Cincinnati (21 – 27) just finished a three-game sweep of the NL East-leading Washington Nationals on Sunday going 8 – 2 against the Nats. Cincinnati won Friday’s game 5 – 2 and went 8 -5 on Saturday. Cincinnati’s win today came courtesy of a 6-run deluge from the Reds in the 7th inning after a relatively quiet day on both sides of the bat. Before that, Washington had only allowed 2 total runs from Cincinnati. One came in the 4th and the other in the 5th. The Nats’ bullpen struggled in Sunday’s game, with starter Tanner Rourke allowing 4 hits, 2 runs, 2 earned runs, 2 home runs, and 2 walks in 6 innings pitched. He struck out only 1 batter along the way. Things weren’t much better for the rest of Washington’s bullpen as Matt Grace and Aaron Barrett combined to allow a total of 6 runs, 5 hits, and 6 earned runs. Grace also allowed 2 walks in his time on the mound before being pulled. On the other side of the ball, Cincinnati starter Michael Lorenzen had a slightly better day, allowing only 1 hit and striking out 4 over 6 innings. He had his share of struggles, though. He walked 6 batters, allowed 2 runs, and 2 earned runs over that span of time.

There’s no time to rest for Washington as it prepares for a 7-game home stand beginning Monday night with a three-game series against the Miwaukee Brewers. That series will be followed up by a 4-game series against the Cubs. The Reds only get a day to rest on Monday before hitting the road again on Tuesday, this time to face the Philadelphia Phillies in a three-game series in the city of brotherly love. After that, it’s back home for a three-game home-stand against San Diego and then another three-game run against Philadelphia at Great American Ballpark before that long 4-game stretch against the Cubs, which will lead up to ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast on the 14th that will see that series’ final game.

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN (L – R) Dan Shulman, John Kruk, Curt Schilling

Dan Shulman will have the call for the June 14th broadcast of Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell. He will be joined in the booth by analysts Curt Schilling and John Kruk. Buster Olney will also be on hand during the game for additional coverage. Those not near a TV during the game can catch it on their local ESPN Radio affiliate. Jon Sciambi and Chris Singleton will have the call for ESPN Radio. Baseball Tonight: Sunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet will precede Sunday night’s game. It will air at 7pm ET on ESPN with Karl Ravech anchoring the broadcast. He will be joined by analyst Aaron Boone and reporters Tim Kurkjian and Nicole Briscoe. There’s lots of other action on the diamond in the weeks leading up to that June 14th broadcast including the the Cardinals on the road against the Dodgers on June 7th and the Angels hosting the Tigers tonight, May 31st. The current broadcast schedule, for those that would like to know, of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is listed below.

Sunday Night Baseball upcoming schedule:

Date Game

May 31 Detroit Tigers at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim presented by Taco Bell

June 7 St. Louis Cardinals at Los Angeles Dodgers presented by Taco Bell

June 14 Cincinnati Reds at Chicago Cubs presented by Taco Bell

June 21 San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers presented by Taco Bell

June 28 Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals presented by Taco Bell

July 5 TBD

July 12 St. Louis Cardinals at Pittsburgh Pirates presented by Taco Bell

July 19 Boston Red Sox at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim presented by Taco Bell

More information on ESPN’s MLB coverage is available online now along with all of the latest MLB news at:

Website: http://espn.go.com/mlb

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESPNBaseballTonight

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Celebrates 25 Years Covering MLB With Special Opening Night Broadcast

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN reaches a milestone this Spring.  Beginning March 30th at 6:30pm ET, the Worldwide Leader in Sports will kick off its twenty-fifth season covering Major League Baseball.  It all begins with an exclusive ninety-minute presentation of MLB’s Opening Night on ESPN presented by Scotts–Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres—on Sunday Night Baseball.  Karl Ravech will host the special anniversary broadcast.  He will be joined by MLB Hall of Famer Barry Larkin, Jon Kruk, and Curt Schilling.

The night’s special pre-game broadcast will be followed up by first pitch scheduled for 8pm ET.  Host Dan Shulman will be back for the network’s landmark anniversary season.  Also returning are analyst Jon Kruk and reporter Buster Olney.  There will be a new face joining the regular broadcast team this season.  MLB veteran and Curt Schilling also joins the team beginning this season.

MLB fans can catch all the Opening Night festivities across the ESPN platforms, including ESPN, ESPN Radio (with Jon Sciambi, and Chris Singleton), ESPN Deportes, ESPN Deportes Radio, and online via WatchESPN.

ESPN’s Opening Day schedule will feature five matchups, highlighted by a matchup of the 2013 MLB World Series Champion Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles.  That game is scheduled for a 3pm start time.  The complete ESPN Opening Night/Opening Day schedule is listed below.

 

ESPN’s Opening Night and Opening Day Schedule

Date Time (ET) Game Network
Sun., Mar. 30 8 p.m. Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres telecast presented by Scotts ESPN, ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Deportes Radio, WatchESPN
Mon., Mar. 31 1 p.m. Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates telecast presented by Scotts ESPN, WatchESPN
Mon., Mar. 31 3 p.m. Boston Red Sox at Baltimore Orioles telecast presented by Scotts ESPN2, WatchESPN
Mon., Mar. 31 4 p.m. St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds telecast presented by Scotts ESPN, WatchESPN
Mon., Mar. 31 7 p.m. Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins telecast presented by Scotts ESPN2, WatchESPN
Mon., Mar. 31 10 p.m. Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim telecast presented by Scotts ESPN2, WatchESPN

 

ESPN offers audiences fully in depth MLB coverage online at http://espn.go.com/mlb.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.