A few years ago, Citizens Bank Park became Fenway South for the games in which the Red Sox were playing the Phillies. Last year, Phillies’ fans had a better showing. This year, expect fewer Massholes.
Now that interleague play is back, you can expect Red Sox Nation to show up at the Bank this weekend. They travel well and it’s usually easier to get a ticket down here than it is in Fenway. Hopefully Phillies’ fans won’t look to make a quick buck and sell their tickets on StubHub. With a string of 62 straight sellouts, Phillies fans are leaving little room for Sox fans.
With the Red Sox struggling this year, currently sitting at 4th place in the AL East, maybe the Phillies can finally get off to a good start in IL play. The Phillies are woeful in games against the Junior Circuit, going 96-121 since 1997. They’re 15-22 against Boston. While these games haven’t hurt the Phillies too much the past 3 years, winning some more of them wouldn’t hurt.
Coming off of a disappointing 4 game split against the Pirates and Cubs, the Phillies should be looking to increase their lead in the division, but only if they can find their offense. The bats went quiet during this week and they struggled as a result. Solid outings by Roy Halladay and Jamie Moyer were wasted as the Phillies could only manage one run each in their starts.
The Fightins should have their hands full this weekend, as they face John Lackey, Daisuke Matsuzaka, and Tim Wakefield in the 3 game set. Wakefield takes the place of the injured Josh Beckett. The Phillies counter with Cole Hamels, Kyle Kendrick, and Halladay.
The Red Sox don’t figure to be a .500 team all season, so getting this series in now, while they’re struggling, should be good for the Phillies. A lot of experts had these two teams meeting in the World Series this year, so the Sox will have to pick it up if they want that to happen.
Until then, it’s only 3 games in May against an American League team, but it’s still a solid measuring stick for the Phillies.