This has been an enjoyable road trip from the standpoint of getting to see different ballparks for the first time. The first thing that comes to mind about Citizens Bank Park, here in Philadelphia, is home runs of course. It has a reputation of being a launching pad because the air is often so warm, and I’m interested to see how well the ball really carries. A regular Phillies observer told me during batting practice that on particularly cold nights, the wind sometimes blows in and it can be tough clearing the fence. But it was warm today and should be a pleasant night. A’s manager Bob Melvin said he doesn’t want his pitchers getting too caught up in worrying about home runs. “You keep the ball down, it (is effective) anywhere,” Melvin said.
A’s – Weeks 2B, Pennington SS, Sweeney CF, Matsui LF, Jackson 1B, DeJesus RF, Suzuki C, Sizemore 3B, Moscoso RHP.
Phillies – Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Victorino CF, Ibanez LF, Brown RF, Schneider C, Worley RHP.
–Coco Crisp is getting a day off to rest his sore heel and other physical ailments that have accumulated, Melvin said, without specifying what else was bothering Crisp.
–Might Hideki Matsui connect for his 500th professional homer here? He certainly has good memories of Citizens Bank Park. He hit a pinch-hit homer off Brett Myers in Game 3 of the 2009 World Series, on his way to winning MVP honors for the series. Matsui is playing left field tonight and Melvin said he’ll also play left on Saturday. But Melvin is undecided about Sunday. Roy Halladay will start Sunday for the Phillies, and though Matsui is hitting just .237 against him, he’s hit more homers against Halladay (four) than any other pitcher in his major league career.