These Phillies are an odd bunch. One month they're comically bad at baseball, as bad, in fact, as their roster suggests they should be. The next month, they're out there scoring a bazillion runs off of Zach Greinke and Jacob deGrom behind homers from players like Odubel Herrera and Andres Blanco who don't have much business hitting dingers.
Tonight, the Phillies received yet another solid outing from former not-really-a-prospect Jerad Eickhoff. He went 7 innings and only gave up three runs. That's about all you can ask for from any pitcher, but from a back-of-the-rotation guy, that's a start you don't want to waste. Actually, I guess the Phillies probably don't care too much about wasting it. I mean, what are they really losing out on by not winning this game? A chance to win 65 games instead of 64 games? Sleep will not be lost over this one, I am confident in that.
I mentioned that the Phillies don't make sense, or at least haven't for the past couple months. You know who else doesn't make sense? Bartolo Colon. He's 42 years old, 285 lbs., and throws pretty much only one pitch. He should be not very good. Instead, he has been very good, especially against the Phillies.
Tonight, that two-seamer of Colon's flummoxed the Phillies. Over 8 innings, Colon gave up only 4 hits and one walk while striking out nine. Again, this was mostly on the power of one pitch: his two-seam fastball. The Phillies are weird, man. Or is it Bartolo who's weird? Hard to tell, really. Jeff Francoeur, however, offered some insight on the subject post-game:
Here's another weird thing about Bartolo Colon: his hitting. Bartolo Colon at-bats are must-watch events, but not in quite the same way that, say, a Mike Trout at-bat is required viewing. Watching Bartolo Colon try to hit a baseball is like watching Peggy Olson try to be romantic: By golly does she try with all her might, but, when it comes right down to it, being romantic is not in her DNA. Hitting is not in Bartolo's DNA, yet, he recorded a single tonight in the 5th inning that eventually led to a run as he scored on a Curtis Granderson home run.
The fifth inning is where all the Mets three runs came from. They got two on that Granderson home run, but before that, Michael Conforto hit a solo home run that barely scraped over the wall in left centerfield. It was a brief attack the Mets made on Phillies starter Jerad Eickhoff, but it got the job done.
I noted the that Phillies were unable to do anything resembling run scoring against Bartolo Colon, but in the 9th, with Mets closer Jeurys Familia--a better pitcher than Colon--pitching, they got something going. After back-to-back singles to lead off the inning from Cesar Hernandez and Aaron Altherr, Ryan Howard drew a walk to load the bases with no outs. Jeff Francoeur was up next and helped provide the most Phillies run of all time. He hit into a double play that allowed Hernandez to score. Does it get any more Phillies than that? No, is the answer to that.
Familia struck out the next batter, Andres Blanco, to end the game. It was a Familia ending for the Phillies as they are now 1-13 against the Mets in 2015.
Tomorrow Aaron Harang will face off against Jon Niese in a pitchers' duel you surely don't want to miss. You never know, I might not be kidding.