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Phils draw Rangers on road to start '14 season

Home opener set for April 7 vs. Brewers after series in Arlington, Chicago

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies begin the 2014 season in a place they have never opened: Rangers Ballpark.

They launch their 162-game schedule March 31 on the road against the Rangers in Arlington before they head north to Chicago for a three-game weekend series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. The Phillies return to Philadelphia to host the Brewers on April 7 in the home opener at Citizens Bank Park.

If the Phillies are going to make the postseason next year, they will have to play well on the road down the stretch.

They play 19 of their final 29 games on the road, which includes a nine-game road trip at the end of August and beginning of September against the Mets, Braves and Nationals and a 10-game road trip in the middle of the month against the Padres, A's and Marlins before they finish the season with a three-game series at home against the Braves.

The National League East is paired up with the American League West next season for Interleague Play. The Phillies host the Angels on May 13-14, the Astros on Aug. 5-7 and the Mariners on Aug. 18-20. Besides the Rangers, the Phillies hit the road to play the Angels on Aug. 12-13 and A's on Sept. 19-21.

The Phillies also play a home-and-home series against the Blue Jays with two games at Citizens Bank Park on May 5-6 and two in Toronto on May 7-8.

The Phillies are home most of May and August, playing 19 of 27 games at home in May and 16 of 27 games at home in August. Conversely, they play 16 of 28 games on the road in March and April, 17 of 27 games on the road in July and 16 of 26 games on the road in September.

June is the only month Phillies games are nearly evenly split with 14 home games and 13 road games.

Phillies fans looking for a good summer road trip might want to look at Aug. 12-17, when the Phillies visit the Angels and Giants.

The Pacific Coast Highway from L.A. to San Francisco sounds pretty good.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for
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