Friday, April 23, 2010

Reverse Curse Alive & Well

I've had it with bashing Jamie Moyer. I mean every damn time I complain about him being washed up and incapable of withdrawing quietly the old geezer goes out and pitches a helluva game proving among other things (and among other people) that I don't know what I am talking about.

While I'm at it, how 'bout my call on Kyle Kendrick for pure insight? Do I have my finger on this team's pulse or what?!

Moyer's strong outing coupled with clutch hitting by the usual suspects gave the Phils two of three games in Atlanta. As we all know by now, they should have swept the Bravos. The Phils certainly served notice on Atlanta that they are still kings of the hill. As for the Florida games, well, those guys have always been the Phils' biggest nemeses and they'll be there at the end of this season as well.

The Phils were playing without the regular left side of their infield as Placido Polanco took the day off to recover from being plunked on the elbow. Earlier in the day the Phils placed another starter, J.A. Happ, on the fifteen day disabled list making that two of the five guys who began the season in the rotation sitting on the sidelines. Pitching was the worry for this team going into 2010, but for now at least they seem to be staving off disaster. It remains to be seen as the weather heats up and the off days are fewer how well their patchwork rotation can perform. For fear of sticking my foot in my mouth again, Moyer tends to go through some rough patches as the season wears on and Kendrick's terrific outing Tuesday night makes one in three starts this season, hardly a pattern...yet.

It doesn't appear anyone is going to run away with the NL East. Frankly, the Braves went rather meekly given the strength of their rotation and the quality of their lineup. The usual Phillies killers, Martin Prado, Brian McCann and Mike Diaz were missing in action much of the series while Chipper stroked the ball hard and in some bad luck a few times when it might have counted. Last night two ropes right at Greg Dobbs to end two different innings could have completely changed the complexion of the game, but, then, the Phils' defense has been superb. Last night Shane Victorino dropped a long fly ball that was tough but catchable, especially for him, and Chase Utley made two errors in one inning. Still, this team can pick 'em and over the long haul combined with their offense and at least Roy Halladay should make them the favorites in the division.

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