Last night marked the start of a big series for the Phillies, who are looking to affirm their status as a contender in the National League East.
They did just that in a 3-0 shutout win over the Braves, led by seven shutout innings from Nick Pivetta. He allowed only four hits and a walk with seven strikeouts on 107 pitches. Over his last three starts, he’s allowed just one run on 10 hits and two walks, while striking out 25 for an ERA of 0.43. That’s really good.
The Phils got on the board with a shallow solo homer from Nick Williams in the bottom of the 4th. Nothing else happened until Aaron Altherr pinch-hit for Pivetta in the seventh and crushed a two-run bomb to left.
Odubel Herrera got on base again, extending his “games he’s made it at least to first base no matter what MLB says” to 47.
The Phils are a half-game behind Atlanta for tops in the NL East. They can be the ones with a half-game lead in the division at the end of the night if they beat the Braves at 7:05 PM on NBC Sports Philadelphia. The singing Vince Velasquez will take the mound, looking for another great start.
Check out the latest episode of the Crossing Broadcast, featuring a ton of basketball talk.
The Eagles will begin OTAs today at the NovaCare Complex. Here’s how the roster will look.
The team also made some small moves in their scouting and football operations departments.
Howie Roseman knew he needed to alter the culture a little bit to create competition. He did just that:
We understand that it’s hard to repeat,” Roseman said at the owners’ meetings in March. “You have to add some guys with the same chip on their shoulders that we brought in last year.”
Now, adding guys with chips on their shoulders coincided nicely with the Eagles’ salary cap situation. The good thing about players with something to prove is that they’re cheap. And the Eagles needed that.
All of their free agents this offseason signed either one- or two-year deals and it’s similar to the contracts the Eagles handed out last offseason when they brought in Alshon Jeffery, LeGarrette Blount, Chris Long and Patrick Robinson. All those guys were hits and it helped with the championship. But these signings aren’t always hits; there are going to be misses too.
When talking about moves, Roseman likened it to gambling, which is really what it is. The analytics play a role in making sure the odds are in their favor, but there are plenty of variables like injuries that still make every move a gamble. It’s all about maximizing the odds.
These high schoolers did their prom the correct way.
An early Sixers-only mock draft includes Villanova’s Mikal Bridges and a guy from Bosnia and Herzegovina going in the first round.
Should the Sixers go for a positionless player like Michael Porter Jr?
Continuing the individual season reviews with backup center Amir Johnson.
Same old song and dance for the Philadelphia Union? It feels like that’s happening.
In other sports news, Cleveland tied their Eastern Conference Final series with the Celtics after a 111-102 win. It was also the first game since Boston defeated the Sixers in Game 5 that a game was decided by less than 10 points.
The Capitals have forced a Game 7 in Tampa Bay after a 3-0 shutout over the Lightning. That will be Wednesday. The winner faces the Vegas Golden Knights.
Vegas advancing to the Stanley Cup Final is good for the NHL, not bad.
Tom Brady is skipping OTAs, even though he’s gone to them his entire career. See what a Super Bowl loss to the Eagles does to you?
Fox is close to acquiring the broadcast rights to WWE’s SmackDown, which is huge for the wrestling brand. It’s reportedly going to be worth $1 billion.
Miami’s Lonnie Walker IV has some interesting thoughts about Earth.
In the news, the Folcroft officer that was shot two years ago had a gun pointed at him from homicide suspects in Chester.
Robert Indiana, the creator of the LOVE statue, has died at the age of 89.
A primate escaped its crate at a San Antonio airport. Planet of the Apes is actually happening.