Oct 21, 2010, 12:00 AM EST
File photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Phillies try to knot the NLCS up at 2-2 this evening at AT&T Park.
In previewing this series last week, I suggested tonight's Game 4 could be the pivotal juncture. My reasoning? As good as the Phillies' top three starters are, Joe Blanton doesn't measure up. The Giants, meanwhile, have the potentially electric Madison Bumgarner on the hill. Thus, if the rookie lefty wins this matchup tonight, San Francisco goes up 3-1 in the NLCS and is in great shape to advance to the World Series.
But if Blanton can come through — he has had postseason success in the past, particularly in 2008 — the Phillies will knot the series back up at 2-2 and feel confident knowing Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels will be starting the next three games, needing to win only two of them.
Lineup changes for both teams. Juan Uribe still can't go for the Giants, so Edgar Renteria remains at shortstop while Pablo Sandoval makes his first start of the series at third base. For the Phillies, Raul Ibanez (0-for-11 with five strikeouts in the series) has been benched in favor of Ben Francisco…
Where: AT&T Park
Gametime: 7:57 p.m.
CF Shane Victorino
2B Chase Utley
3B Placido Polanco
1B Ryan Howard
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
Follow us on Twitter
- Will 2015 be a breakout year for Nats' RF Harper?
- Werth shooting for opener but will be cautious
- Escobar '100 percent committed' to new position
- Why Harper's confidence is a good sign for Nats
- A year older, Rendon ready for the long grind
- Nats' minor league affiliate gets new ownership
- Harper on Nats signing Scherzer: 'Where's my ring?'
- Report: Ichiro happy to be away from Yankees' manager Girardi
- Full roster has reported, but Werth still rehabbing
- Wilson Ramos talks Nats' stacked rotation, personal goals