The Phillies won tonight, but it wasn't entirely their fault. They didn't mean to win. I think it was an accident.
This was a weird baseball game, in that I don't think the Phillies should have won. They tried pretty hard to lose, actually, with David Buchanan, Chase Utley, and BJ Rosenberg leading the charge.
Buchanan battled through five innings, tossing 94 pitches -- 47 balls, and 47 strikes. He got into deep counts and was duller than a butter knife, but he coughed up only two runs during his residence on the mound. The biggest issue for Buchanan was walks. He gave up four -- two in the second and two in the fifth. And one of those walks would come around to score. That was a sure sign that he was off his game, because coming into tonight Buchanan had walked just six batters in 36 1/3 innings.
I can't ignore Chase Utley. This will hurt me more than it will hurt him. I love him, he's my favorite, but it needs to be said. He's sucked harder than a Dyson vacuum lately. Coming into tonight, he's hit .231/.295/.295 in June. That's bad. He had a hit and walk, which is something at least, but he also had an embarrassing error in the second inning, letting a pop-up drop out of the heel of his glove. And in the eighth inning he dropped another ball, but thankfully recovered in time to toss it to Jimmy Rollins to get the forceout. The Phillies have missed Utley's bat since it's been on vacation. His glove is apparently on vacation with it. They can't both be away at the same time. Utley needs one of them, because he needs to play better. I'M SORRY CHASE BUT IT'S TRUE.
And then of course there's BJ Rosenberg, who is back for some reason. Do you know why? I don't know why. His earlier stint with the big club can charitably be described as the baseball equivalent of an episode of Hoarders. And yet the Phillies are back for more. To be fair, eight of Rosenberg's last nine appearances in the minors have been scoreless, which may be why the front office thought he could use a second look. Rosenberg wasted no time making them regret that, giving up a single and then a two-run home run to Garrett Jones.
The trio of Buchanan, Utley, and Rosenberg weren't enough to stop the Marlins from losing, though. In just his second trip to the mound in his major league career, Miami starter Andrew Heaney gave up three runs in the first, including a two-run homer from Marlon Byrd. (The third run scored thanks to Marlins' catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia and his throwing error.) Ben Revere hit a one-out triple in the second, and came around to score on a wild pitch. Cody Asche stayed hot, hitting a double in the sixth and bringing in two runs. And that seventh and final run scored in the sixth inning as well, on another wild pitch. There were four wild pitches thrown by the Marlins staff tonight, which tied a franchise record. A sad, sad franchise record.
I have another vitally important bullpen update for you all: yes, they are still awesome. I'm not counting BJ Rosenberg in that of course, because no sane human would. Entering tonight, the Phillies had the best bullpen ERA in the majors for the month of June, just 1.02. That's impressive. And that continued tonight with scoreless outings from Mario Hollands, Ken Giles, Jake Diekman, and Jonathan Papelbon. Pap earned his 18th save tonight, and his ERA continued to shrink (it's now at 1.48). And Ken Giles, by the way, is not fucking around. He got The Mighty Giancarlo Stanton *again* tonight, a swing-and-a-miss on a 99mph pitch to end the seventh inning.
So the Phillies won. It wasn't the prettiest baseball to watch, but in the end, a win is a win is a win. I'll take it.