Jimmy Rollins now finds himself tied with Mike Schmidt for the Philadelphia Phillies' franchise record of 2,234 hits, and his next at-bats will come in what has been a favorable matchup for the shortstop.
His next chance to break the record comes Saturday at home against the Chicago Cubs as the Phillies try to bounce back from a series-opening loss by extending Edwin Jackson's Philadelphia plight.Rollins went 1 for 4 with a double in Friday's 2-1 loss to the Cubs (27-38), and he has two more games to set the mark on the current homestand."It's been fun," Rollins said. "It's something I want to do at home. I want to share it with the people of Philadelphia."He also might share it with Jackson, against whom Rollins is 5 for 9 with two home runs. Rollins has an eight-game hitting streak and a six-game home hitting streak against Chicago.Philadelphia (28-37) had matched a season high with three straight wins prior to the series-opening loss, but missing out on stretching it to four didn't surprise Rollins after the team was held to five hits."We've haven't been winning in streaks, or in general," Rollins said.Neither has Chicago. Despite Friday's win, the Cubs, an NL-worst 12-24 on the road, are batting .202 and averaging 2.6 runs per game over a 3-7 road stretch. They haven't won consecutive road games in over two months.Starlin Castro's two-run homer in the fourth inning Friday was all the offense they managed, giving them four runs in three games.Production won't get any easier with Emilio Bonifacio shelved. The Chicago leadoff hitter landed on the 15-day disabled list Friday after injuring his rib cage Thursday.The Cubs activated outfielder Ryan Sweeney in a corresponding move after the outfielder had been on the DL since May 3 because of a right hamstring strain. Sweeney started in center field, going 0 for 4 to give him two hits in his last 15 at-bats.Jackson (4-6, 4.70 ERA) allowed four runs and seven hits while striking out eight in six innings of Monday's 6-2 loss at Pittsburgh. He's 1/3 with a 6.64 ERA in his last four starts, and all three losses have come away from Wrigley Field to fill out his four-start road losing streak."I don't get caught up in numbers, so I really can't give you an answer," Jackson said. "It's hard to understand, though."He's also never won in Philadelphia, going 0-4 with a 7.04 ERA in four regular-season starts.Jackson thinks he's been too predictable against key hitters, something he'll want to change before facing Rollins and Chase Utley, who is 6 for 11 against Jackson."I got to do a better job of mixing up," said Jackson, who will be opposed by David Buchanan.After winning his first MLB start, Buchanan (1-3, 6.08) has endured some considerable struggles in three straight losses.Buchanan defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 24 but is 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA in three starts since. He surrendered four runs and six hits while striking out six in six innings of Sunday's 4-1 loss in Cincinnati.Despite team struggles, both pitching staffs have been strong lately. The Phillies have posted a 2.36 ERA over seven games while Cubs starters have a 2.89 ERA in 11 contests.