Monday, May 03, 2010

If You Can't Lick 'Em Join 'Em

We all know the majority of Phillies' starters just don't pitch very well but even the the team's vaunted offense had been missing in action for nearly two weeks. Fortunately, their dormant bats awakened for games two and three of the weekend series with the Mets but it was a walk to pitcher Jamie Moyer that keyed Sunday night's comeback victory.

Moyer began his primary duties of the evening by surrendering a three-run homer to David Wright in the top of the first inning and just like that his mates were down three zip to Johann Santana. The Phils came back in the bottom of the frame stroking two solo home runs to keep things close. Unfortunately, Moyer wasn't done pitching and by the middle of the fourth inning he had yielded another home run and the Phils were down 5-2. That's when the home team exploded against Santana and his relief for nine runs, all coming with two outs in a rally that was kept alive when Moyer drew a walk to drive in a run and set the table for Shane Victorino's grand slam. Not since Brett Myers' infamous walk against C.C. Sebathia in the playoffs two years ago had a Phillies pitcher worked such a crucial free pass.

Had Moyer just stuck to his day job, throwing junk and carrying the moniker "Ageless Wonder" around with him, the Phils might have lost two of three to the visiting New Yorkers and in the process dropped their third straight series. Imagine the humiliation of letting those Metropolitans come into our house and take two out of three!! [Added comment: Moyer is allowing nearly six runs per game, hardly "wonderful".]

The Mets did arrive in town on a beautiful Friday evening trailing the Phils by half a game in the standings and riding a seven-game winning streak. They proceeded to thump the Phils 9-1 as Kyle Kendrick showed once again why he is strictly an emergency starter, nothing more, nothing less. Other than their improbable victory over Tim Lincecum, the Phils offense had been anything but "vaunted". Saturday's 10-0 win, fueled in no small measure by a fellow named Halladay, and last nights blow out that looked for all the world like it was going to be a blowout by the guys in the third base dugout, seemed to fit the earlier pattern the Phils established and the one most observers expected them to follow for much of the season, namely, beat the other guys by scoring a lot of runs.

The Cardinals arrive tonight for a four-game set and the Vaunteds will face some tough pitching not to mention a guy named Pujols. Let's hope Jamie Moyer will be available to pinch hit.

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