Phillies Preview: Marlins (28-30) at Phillies (30-26)

Kevin McAlpin covers the Phillies for
97.5 The Fanatic, he will be previewing Phillies home games at Crossing Broad.  You can follow him on Twitter (@kevinmcalpin).

Kyle Kendrick will be on the mound for the Phillies tonight, in the opener of a 3 game series with the Marlins.  In his last start on Wednesday, Kendrick scattered 5 hits over 7 frames, and gave up just 1 earned run. However, he took a no decision as the Phillies lost 2-1 to the Braves.  Kendrick got off to a shaky start this season, he's gone 3-1 over his last 6 starts with an ERA under 3.  Jayson Werth will sit out tonight, Ben Francisco will start in right.  "I think he needs a blow" Manuel said.  "He needs to sit down, get off his feet and slow down."  Werth, like most of the Phillies batting order has struggled the last few weeks and struck out to end each of the last two games (both losses for the Phillies). 

Despite the team's struggles, Charlie Manuel seems pretty upbeat.  He's optimisitc that the Phillies will turn this thing around.

The good news:  Ryan Howard is 8 for 18 with 4 HR against Volstad.  Jorge Cantu is the only Marlin who's really had much success off Kendrick (6-12 w/2HR).

The bad news:  Utley is just 2-14 (.143) vs. Volstad.

What To Watch For:  20 year old Mike Stanton will make his Major League Debut for Florida tonight.  Stanton was a second-round draft pick of the Marlins in 2007.   In 52 games with Double-A Jacksonville, Stanton hit .311 with 52 RBI and 21 HR.  At 6'5/233lbs, Stanton is the most anticipated Marlins prospect since Miguel Cabrera.  It should be interesting to see how the rookie slugger handles himself in front of 45,000 at Citizens Bank Park.

Starting Line-Ups: 

Marlins – Coughlan LF, Sanchez 1B, Ramirez SS, Cantu 3B, Uggla 2B, Ross CF, Stanton RF, Paulino C, Volstad P (3-6, 4.08)

Phillies – Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Francisco RF, Ibanez LF, Valdez SS, Ruiz C, Kendrick P (3-2, 4.62)

Forecast:  Clear skies and temps in the low 70's.

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