The 29-year old right-hander was a 1st round pick in 2002, and is in his 8th major league season; he spent five seasons with Oakland and is in his 3rd season with the Phillies. He's 64-56 for his career with a 4.23 ERA and 1.33 WHIP. He has been referred to as a "league-average/innings eater" in the past, but was very reliable for the Phillies last year; From May 26th, he threw 151 innings in 23 starts, and limited the opposition to a .304 OBP and a 3.16 ERA. He's in his final year of arbitration, and he's looking to build on the success he had last year to parley into a nice free agent contract. He's made four starts in his career versus the Mets and is 2-0, with a 1.59 ERA and .953 WHIP. He faced the Mets once last year, and threw 7 1/3 shutout innings.
Blanton throws strikes and has a very compact delievery, releasing from a high 3/4s arm slot. He features a 88-91 mph fastball that he will throw to both sides of the plate, a slider (83 mph), as well as an occasional curve (76 mph) and change-up (81 mph). His two best pitches are his slider and change-up. Last year he saw an increase in swings out of the strike zone which increased his K/9 to 7.51, but this year it's back down to 5.0 (career average is 5.62). He's a fly-ball pitcher who has been prone to the long-ball the last two years.
After missing some time earlier this year with an oblique injury, Blanton has made four starts and is 1-2, with a 5.06 ERA, but only a 1.16 WHIP. He's gone 6+ innings in each of his four starts, but has allowed at least three runs in all of them. He's let up five home runs in 26 innings. He's keeping his walk rate down (1.69 W/9), but has benefited from a low BAPIP (.259) and that's the reason for the low WHIP.