On a night when more people were probably watching Johan Santana Pitch the 1st No Hitter in Mets History, The Phillies were beating the Marlins largely the way they've lost most games this season, as they hit the ball hard, did not attempt a bunt or steal, and watched their opponent strand 12 RISP and go 0-4 on the night with the bases loaded.
While Santana threw over 120 pitches tonight without a hit, Kyle Kendrick gave up his first hit in the first inning, on the first pitch, to Jose Reyes, and would give up two more in that inning alone, along with 1 run. It likely would have been two had Jose Reyes not made the mistake of trying to stretch a leadoff single into a double. (Reyes and Hanley Ramirez would actually each double to lead off the 3rd and 5th innings, as well, but lucky for us, The Marlins could not capitalize on KK tonight.) Kyle was actually more than serviceable tonight, going 5.1 innings with 3BB and 4K's but he made the K's count, didn't give up any long balls, had his cutter working better, and got the inning ending double plays when he needed them. I'll take that kind of outing from him every time. We're gonna need em.
The Phils answered in the bottom of the first, when Mark Buehrle Killer, left fielder, rookie of the year candidate and former top prospect
Domonic Brown Hector Luna hit a bloop BABIP single rocket to LF with 2 outs and the bases loaded.
The Marlins would threaten again in the 3rd and 4th, stranding runners in scoring position each inning. The skies opened at the end of the 4th with the Phils ahead 2-1, and thousands of Phillies Phaithful secretly prayed for the rains to hold off long enough to make it official. Alas, it was not meant to be. We hit a rain delay for about an hour, the attention shifted to the Mets, and the No hitter (even on that tweeter thing), took over most peoples minds.
I contemplated doing a choose your own adventure recap, which I will definitely do in the future, made myself a sandwich, watched some of ET with my son, then did the bills for a bit. AT&T by the way, is still sending paper statements, even though I've insisted they stop. I started figuring out ways to get fantasy trade value out of Matt Kemp while he was on the DL, and then ultimately decided he's not for sale...Yet. Liz, if you're out there, I still like Stanton! Even if he did only go 1-4 with a K from KK...
How did you spend YOUR rain delay?
I think the Phils spent it in the cage cause in the 5th the came out guns a-blazin! Polanco connected for his third hit of the night, and Pence said TIIIMBER!! with a long deep shot to make it 4-2. At this point everyone prayed for the rain to come down in buckets. but Mother Nature is a cold hearted bitch. And this game was gonna go the whole way.
Charlie Manuel made it interesting in the 8th when he left Antonio Bastardo** in to pitch a second inning to face LHB Logan "Charlie when the hell are you gonna realize that he kills lefties and don't got no dad gum splits" Morrison who promptly split the cover off the ball for a home run and started a rally that saw someone named Justin Ruggiano follow him with another solo shot, Jake Diekman load the bases, and ultimately led to Charlie finding an ancient script version of the book somewhere in the dugout, that told him it was ok to bring Jonathan Papelbon in with the bases loaded and one out. Paps got Infante to Rollins* to Rollins and struck out Hanley on a dubious call to end the threat. Papelbon would finish them off in the ninth, getting Greg Dobbs to fly out to John Mayberry (who turned a misplayed almost run scoring mistake into what looked like a spectacular catch.) to end the game.
With that victory all five teams in the division are now within 1 game of each other in the win column. Hows THAT for selective statistics? Every starter not named Mayberry hit, and our 2-3-4 hitters were a combined 9-12 with 5 runs scored. Chooch continued his insanity and collected 3 hits himself, raising his batting average to something like .843 i think. Jimmy Rollins also turned pretty good on a fastball in the 5th for a guy who has lost bat speed.
Jose Contreras left the game after 5 pitches in the 7th and was last seen writhing in pain on the ground clutching his 84 year old elbow. I wish the big truck the best, if he happened to have thrown his last pitch or something, cause that did not look good. Also, Bastardo gave up back to back HR's
Starting tonight I'm recommending we start a Rollins watch in the recap, to count every time Rollins hits a Rollins*. For the rest of the year.
Tonight. J-Roll 0-4 (no Rollins) 0-4 since June 1.
Cole Hamels and his soon to be $200,000,000 Dodger Blue Arm tomorrow.
I still refuse to learn how to fan graph. get it yung uns!
*definition of Rollins after the Jump
*Really? You had to jump? You didn;t realize I was talking about a pop up? Wow.