Friday, August 03, 2007

It's Still About The Pitching

Kyle Lohse made his Phillies debut yesterday and anyone arriving late at the ballpark would have missed it. In one inning of decided labor the newly acquired Lohse allowed two hits, one walk, and one run. Oh, and he also hit two batters. It might have been a whole lot worse when the Cubs Jacque Jones scorched a liner up the middle with the bases loaded, but the ball struck Lohse on the forearm, he knocked it down and threw Jones out to end the inning. After the game Lohse had quite an ugly bruise but appeared to be otherwise OK. He insisted he'd be ready for his next start, but will the Phillies' position players be ready for him? Whatever the outcome, let's hope we don't receive an official medical report from the Phillies in the interim because we all know what those have meant lately.

Jason Werth, Pat Burrell and Chris Coste had big days for the Phils as they split their series with the Cubs. If Burrell keeps up his positively torrid hitting not only Pat Gillick but every blogger and commenter in the Delaware Valley is going to have to go back to the drawing board again. Geez, Pat, you sure know how to throw a wrench into the works. Frankly, I'm happy for Burrell, who throughout his years of tribulations has maintained a remarkably even public disposition, but I am not ready to be seduced. Sooner than later we are going to see the .201 hitter again.

Coste, meanwhile, has made yet another case for remaining with the Phillies on some sort of permanent basis, a sure sign that he will be sent down or away again. The question no longer is what does he have to prove but what exactly does management have against him?

The game was also marked by another near fatal collapse of the vaunted bullpen but just when it looked like the Cubs would come back from a huge deficit the Phils tacked on three late-inning runs to put the game out of reach even for its own bullpen. Brett Myers was the only member of the pen to have a good outing, pitching a 1-2-3 ninth inning. That makes three straight outings for Myers, two 1-2-3 innings sandwiched around a meltdown.


David said...

I know it won't last, because it never does, but doesn't it at least appear that Burrell finally might be figuring it out a little?

Tom Goodman said...

Yes, he does appear to be figuring it out. I guess I have said that before and watched him take a turn for the worse. Maybe the problem is pitchers figure out he has figured it out. Who knows? I don't wish him ill. On the contrary, it would be great if he came back all the way and stayed there, especially since Ryan Howard is so unpredictable these days.