The Phillies' pitching staff could use a pick-me-up.
Even after Thursday's 1-0 win over the visiting Braves, Philadelphia ranked 12th in the National League with a 4.17 team ERA.
Help is likely coming when left-handed ace Cole Hamels returns after being sidelined with biceps tendinitis in his throwing arm. Earlier this week, Phillies assistant general manager Scott Proefrock termed it "a distinct possibility" that Hamels will rejoin the rotation early next week. That was before Hamels yielded just one run and three hits in seven innings of his rehab start Thursday for Class A Clearwater.
Knowing he could be the odd man out when Hamels returns, Jonathan Pettibone will get a try at filling the void opposite Rockies starter Tyler Chatwood on Friday night in the series opener at Coors Field.
Pettibone did his part against the Marlins last Saturday in his season debut, allowing eight hits and two runs (one earned) while picking up the no-decision in the Phillies' 5-4 win. The 23-year-old righty, whom Philadelphia selected in the third round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft, fanned five and walked one while tossing 80 pitches.
More secure is Chatwood's spot on the foundering Rockies' pitching staff, which began Thursday ranked 14th in the NL in ERA.
Colorado activated Chatwood from the 15-day disabled list on Sunday before the right-hander made his season debut that night in San Francisco. He went six innings and gave up six hits and four runs, striking out five and walking none while earning a no-decision.
The Giants went on to win, 5-4, in 10 innings, but Colorado pitching coach Jim Wright was encouraged by Chatwood's first Major League start since he strained his left hamstring in his final Spring Training appearance.
"I liked his tempo. I liked the command of his pitches. He wasn't overthrowing," Wright said. "He made some good choices in his pitch selection. If we see that type of Tyler Chatwood every time, he's putting himself in position to have a really good year."
Rockies: Brothers still has manager's trust
Reliever Rex Brothers has had a rough start to the 2014 season. He picked up his first loss on Sunday night when San Francisco's Brandon Crawford led off the bottom of the 10th inning with a home run that landed in McCovey Cove, sending the Giants to a dramatic 5-4 win.
Brothers then blew his first save in Monday night's 5-4 loss to San Diego, when a wild pitch and an errant throw back to the plate from catcher Wilin Rosario allowed the tying and winning runs to score. Brothers walked three hitters to set up the walk-off defeat.
What's his solution for turning things around?
"It's making pitches, simple as that," Brothers said. "Stay aggressive. That usually takes care of a lot. It did hurt, it did sting. I've been pretty happy that I haven't had to go through this in a while. But like I say, it's an aggressive mindset."
Brothers bounced back to pitch a 1-2-3 seventh inning in Colorado's 3-1 win over the Padres on Thursday.
Phillies: Revere comes through late
The Phillies needed a clutch hit on Thursday to avoid getting swept by the division-leading Braves. They also needed it to snap a scoreless streak that had dated back to Monday.
Philadelphia got it in the eighth inning of a scoreless game when center fielder Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single to score Domonic Brown, giving the Phillies some momentum before the club embarks on a 10-game road trip.
With one out in the seventh inning, Revere also made a headfirst diving catch on Dan Uggla's sinking line drive.
In 14 games this season, Revere is hitting .288 (15-for-52) with seven runs and a team-best five stolen bases.
• Pettibone would just as soon forget his one career appearance against the Rockies, as he lasted just three innings, allowing seven runs (six earned) on 10 hits with a walk and a strikeout.
• The Rockies went 2-for-7 with runners in scoring position on Thursday. While going 3-4 on a seven-game road trip, the Rockies batted just .217 with RISP. Of course, they're a different team at Coors Field, where they're batting .356 in such scenarios so far this season.