As expected, it was not David Buchanan who took the mound for the IronPigs in this morning’s Camp Day matinee against Durham at Coca-Cola Park.
Instead, the starting assignment went to Jeff Manship.
“That’s Triple-A baseball,” IronPigs manager Dave Brundage said of the uncertainty.
That means Buchanan will take Cliff Lee’s start for the Phillies on Wednesday against Houston. The official announcement will come after their game tonight with the Astros.
Manship had a 6.23 ERA in three appearances for the IronPigs since clearing waivers and being outrighted to Triple-A on July 26. He was 1-2 with a 6.65 ERA in 20 games for the Phillies and also spent nearly six weeks on the disabled list with a quad strain.
Today’s line-up features Cesar Hernandez at third base, his third position in three days. Hernandez started Sunday’s game at second base and Monday night’s at shortstop.
Freddy Galvis, who started Monday at second, moved back to shortstop for toda while Tyler Henson took over at second and replaced hot-hitting Clete Thomas in the nine-hole. Thomas had his third consecutive multi-hit game Monday and is batting .500 (6-for-12) over that span.
Henson has hit safely in 17 of his last 23 games, batting .333, and in 23 of his last 29 starts, hitting .315. He’s also hitting .315 since June 10, a span of 36 games.
With Hernandez at third, Maikel Franco shifts across to first base.
Heady Galvis: Until the 2012 season, when he opened the season as the Phillies’ regular second baseman while Chase Utley recovered from a knee injury, Galvis had only played shortstop over his nine-year pro career.
Monday night the 24-year-old made a veteran play at second when, with a runner at first, he allowed a softly hit humpback liner to fall in front of him, setting up a 4-3-6 double play.
“I’ve grown to expect plays like that from Freddy Galvis no matter where he plays,” Brundage said. “Those are routine plays in his game. He’s really got great instincts, and you can’t teach that. He created a lot of havoc on that play and forced the guy on base to make a decision, and it turned out well.”
Unfamiliar territory: When Greg Smith stepped on the Coca-Cola Park mound Monday night, it was the first home start since June 26.
In between he made starts in six different cities — Scranton, Indianapolis, Louisville, Syracuse, Pawtucket and Buffalo. He was 1-3 in those six starts with a 6.00 ERA (33 innings, 22 earned runs).
“I’ve noticed it, and it’s been kind of like, just give me some familiarity,” the veteran left-hander said. “It was how many starts in how many different ballparks, so it’s been a different view every single time, it’s a different city every single time, and having to do workouts in different locker rooms. To finally get a home start and a little comfort level, it’s a deep breath.”
Smith has definitely been a homebody over his two years with the IronPigs. At Coca-Cola Park he is 11-4 with a 2.54 ERA in 22 games the last two seasons (120 1/3 innings, 34 earned runs) including 5-3 with a 3.39 ERA in 11 starts this year.
On the road over the past two seasons, Smith is 5-8 with a 5.52 ERA in 22 games (106 innings, 65 earned runs). This year he’s 3-5 with a 5.52 ERA in 11 starts.
He was extremely efficient Monday, throwing 86 pitches in seven innings while allowing one run on five hits.
“It came at a much-needed time,” Brundage said after Monday’s game with an eye on today’s bullpen day. “We got exactly what we hoped for.”
It was only the second time in the last 13 starts that Smith worked seven innings.
“He had a better feel tonight than he had in his last few outings, where he was kind of just out there searching for something,” Brundage said. “Tonight we scored early and got those runs in the third (three runs) and fourth (four runs) innings and he did exactly what he was supposed to — come out throwing strikes.”
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