Bombed: Phillies blitzed by Braves 9 to 6

Ryan Howard: Not dead yet - Brian Garfinkel

About the time the Braves hit back-to-back-to-back home runs tonight, my son rage quit the baseball game, leaving me to start the recap. It only got worse. So this is the sad and weepy kind of baseball game, my droogs.

In the olden days, before the lawyer devils of SBN rode herd on our probably illegal and theft-like use of intellectual property, I guess that I would have used something like this Evan Gattis-like picture to start off this recap.

Open it. Admire it: the composition, the positioning, and the downright cleverness.

Consider how the models are portrayed and posed, thinking about how it was photographed. Were there just the models involved, or was there a third party photographer crammed into that room?  Did the room smell faintly of sweat?

What messages are conveyed?  Why yes, the Phillies are the legs sticking up in the air. The Braves are the beaming, smiling bear of a man with the kindly look and the mysterious, Mona Lisa-like grin.

Why is Mona Lisa smiling?  It is a timeless mystery, indeed, but I gather that it is related to the two homer night by Gattis. Or the B2B2B homers in the top of the eighth inning by Gattis, the always annoying Dan Uggla, and the incomparable Andrelton Simmons.

It was that kind of night. All we can do in the end is ponder the unfathomable. Like why, when Roberto Hernandez was clearly fading in the top of the 6th inning, was nobody warming in the Phillies' bullpen?  Why was BJ Rosenberg incapable of throwing anything but meatballs? How can he look so effective one day, and then look atrocious the next?

There are lots of mysteries.  Like why does someone who looks like Snoop pitch for the Braves?

Your turn, girl.

And Ervin Santana had a heckuva turn tonight, going 6 innings, striking out 11, and walking 2. His only blemish was a solo homer to Ryan Howard. Santana could not have done better with a nail gun. If I were the MLB office, I would call up Fredi Gonzalez and Frank Wren tomorrow and award Santana a win, because, well...he sure as hell deserved one. He was fantastic. But it was not to be for him tonight.

Roberto Hernandez did not get the win either, despite pitching pretty, um, interestingly.  His line was an odd one, to be sure: 6 innings, 3 strikeouts, and 6 walks.  Somehow, he gave up only 2 runs, and he gave the Phillies a shot to win it.

Baseball requires us to play the whole game, because strange things happen. Like the eighth inning, and the aforementioned back to back to back homers by the Braves.  But the Phillies were not going to go quietly.

It started innocuously for the Phillies in the bottom of the eighth with a walk by Tony Gwynn, whom Ryne Sandberg has been riding because Gwynn is hotter than Ben Revere. Jimmy Rollins singled off lefty Luis AvilanChase Utley followed with a single to right, loading the bases for Ryan Howard.  Avilan got Howard looking at strike three, bringing Marlon Byrd to the plate.  Byrd singled and drove in a pair.  Chase Utley advanced to third on a wild pitch, bringing Domonic Brown to the dish. No move to the bullpen by the Braves.  Brown crushed his first home run of the season to right-center for an Earl Weaver and a one-run lead.  The Phillies went quietly after that.

By putting up the five spot, the Phillies had taken the lead for the first time since Evan Gattis' two run homer in the sixth off the fading Hernandez. With Papelbon unavailable, Jake Diekman came in to try to get the save.

Diekman walked the first batter, BJ Upton.  A fielder's choice where everyone was safe was the result of Freddie Freeman's at bat.  Diekman induced a weak grounder to second, and Utley hesitated briefly before choosing to go to second to try for the lead runner, and he was just late on it.  Diekman walked Justin Upton to load the bases., bringing up Evan Gattis, who struck out.

Dan Uggla came to the plate.

Remember the smiling, bearded man at the top of the recap?  It turns out that was not Gattis. It was Uggla.  He bombed a hanging slider into the left field seats for the grand slam, putting the Braves back up, 9 - 6.

The lead, it was not regained in the bottom of the ninth.  This was gut-wrenching.  Look at the rollercoaster fangraph.  Ugh. La.  Uggla.

Tomorrow, the Phillies will play the snow and the Braves with Cliff Lee taking the hill. Bon chance, Phillies.


Source: FanGraphs

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