Until they arrived in the desert the other night the Phillies had defied not only gravity since the All Star break but every other natural phenomenon as well. After all, they were the team with the best winning percentage since the break and no one, not even Pete Mackanin's mother, figured them to do that. They even escaped the NL East cellar for a while.
But, then came the desert landing. It wasn't one of those splash downs NASA loves. Heck, it wasn't even the terra firma landings the Ruskies favor. No, this was a serious crash landing. A thumper to end all thumpers.
The Phils have yielded, no, let's make that, thrown themselves at the feet of and offered up themselves entirely, 26 runs to the Diamondbacks in two games. They gave up eleven runs last night in the second inning. That used to be a month's worth of scoring for the pre-All Star break Phils.
There's regression to the mean and then there's a no-holds barred, Oklahoma land rush to it.
Having made their big push to avoid losing 100 games the Phils look like they are back on track.
C'mon, let's face it: a team with a Rule 5 guy starting in centerfield, a third baseman starting in left and a bunch of starting pitchers who aren't highly rated even by the team's admittedly low standards, isn't going to really play well for long stretches of time. The aberration was that stretch between the AS break and Phoenix.