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Two Tales of One Pitcher: Phillies 1, Nationals 0

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Two different Roberto Hernandezs pitched today. One was better than the other.

Zaftig, yet still somehow majestic.
Zaftig, yet still somehow majestic.
Mitchell Leff

Robausto Carnandez is dead.

After today's utterly fantastic start, Roberto Hernandez gets to be called whatever name he wants to be called. I will put that nickname away, even though it's super fun to say.

Hernandez was incredible today, leading the Phillies to a 1-0 win over the Nationals, their sworn division rivals. (Or something.) But Hernandez's day didn't start off that way. Through four innings, he'd thrown 70 pitches and allowed three walks. But only three hits, and miraculously no runs. The Phillies scored one run in the first inning after Jimmy Rollins hustled the hell out of a triple, and Chase Utley singled him home. One run would be as much of a lead as Hernandez would get to work with, and after 70 pitches through four innings, he threw only 28 in the next three innings.

That's right. Roberto Hernandez lasted more than four innings today. He lasted more than five. And six and seven. Hernandez didn't give up the ball until he had one out in the eighth inning.

The Phillies mounted several attempts to score even one measly insurance run, but were rebuffed each time. Gio Gonzalez was almost as great as Hernandez, but not quite. He also lasted 7 1/3 innings, and gave up four hits. Gonzalez had seven strikeouts to Hernandez's three, but Gonzalez did allow the lone run, AKA the winning run.

After Hernandez got one out in the eighth inning, Mike Adams came into the game with the tying run on second base. He would face Jayson Werth, the same Jayson Werth who singled off of Adams on Friday night during the bullpen catastrofuck. (Catastrophuck?) But Adams would best Werth today, getting him to ground out. Adams was pulled for Antonio Bastardo, who promptly walked the go-ahead run. With runners on first and third and the game in the balance, Bastardo struck out Anthony Rendon. Jonathan Papelbon closed it out in the ninth, allowing just a single and heart pounding long fly ball that was pushed foul by the wind. With two outs and two strikes, that'll get your blood flowing. Here are a few fun facts about Jonathan Papelbon:

(Hat tip to Bill Baer of Crashburn Alley for retweeting that into my timeline.)

It should be said, in the interest of full disclosure, that Chase Utley had an uncharacteristically yippy day today. I love him, but I can't ignore the facts. He misread a Ryan Howard pop-up with one out in the first, and was doubled off on his way to third. In the third inning he had an ugly looking error that thankfully didn't result in any runs.

This one was a nail biter, but it was a fun one. The crowd was loud, the hats were silly, the Phillies won, and Harry's voice belted out High Hopes over the loudspeaker. The sun is shining and all is right with the world.

The Phillies are now 15-14 on the year, and they have the opportunity tomorrow to go two games over .500 for the first time this season. They'll try against J.A. Happ, who will be making just his fourth appearance of the season and his first start.

Fangraph of winnage:


Source: FanGraphs