Welcome back to the 'Gush, a little term we use around here to refer to "The Monday Gush." I know what's you're thinking - it's pretty cool.
I missed last week because I was moving, but I promise you'll never have a Monday without a Gush again. Without further hesitation, let's peruse the good news:
Andres Blanco won't stop hitting!
When the Phillies needed somebody to come off the bench and start a rally, they got Andres Blanco. Blanco responded by keying a rally in Saturday night's win, and then woke up on Sunday morning in Miami, got dressed, went down to the park, and did it again, giving the Phillies the lead that eventually won them the game!
Tyler Goeddel did something that mattered!
Everybody keeps poking Goeddel, trying to get him to do something, but he won't. Finally, he did. Twice. The first time, he lept up and made a catch that was, at the moment, game-saving. The second time was last night, was the Phillies most egregious non-entity stepped up to the plate at a time when grounding out to short for the eleventh time that afternoon would have been even more useless. He also made another great defensive play. Get those "Welcome to Goeddelphia" banners out from under the floorboards, people! This .147-hitter is on the way up!
The three-game losing streak ended!
Not only did the Phillies stave off a reenactment of the season's terrible first four losses, but they turned Saturday's victory into a series win against the National League's hottest team, which had been, again, the Marlins.
It's a new league.
Jorge Alfaro has returned to destroy his enemies!
Reading C Jorge Alfaro is activated off 7-day DL and batting third for Fightins today against Portland SeaDogs at FirstEnergy Stadium.— Brian Freeman (@bfreems1) May 7, 2016
He hit a double and knocked in a run!
Chooch is okay even though Derek Dietrich threw his body at him!
In the bottom of the fifth inning against the Marlins on Saturday, Derek Dietrich tried to score to tie the game up, but hadn't counted, as many of us wouldn't, on the arm of Peter Bourjos. The Phillies right fielder's throw came in hot, and Dietrich collided with Carlos Ruiz at the plate, hoping I suppose that if he could blast the catcher into a could of vapor, the play would be called dead.
Chooch really "took a whipping" according to the confusing words chosen by Tom McCarthy to describe the event, but he's fine!
Jeanmar Gomez bounced back from his blown save!
Jeanmar Gomez has 11 saves.— Ryan Gilbert (@rgilbert526) May 8, 2016
Jonathan Papelbon has 9 saves.
Ken Giles has 0 saves.
But it's not just former Phillies whom it is cathartic to see fail who Gomez has bettered (though no one enjoys seeing Ken Giles suffer). It's everyone! Gomez responded to his first blown save of the year by logging two straight non-blown saves, and putting himself on the top of the leader board among NL closers!
The Phillies scouted Tim Lincecum!
That would be something!
The Nationals were swept by the Cubs!
Washington's $145,178,886 payroll is only 1.5 games ahead of the Phillies' $88,646,667 payroll! Of course, once again, those white-hot Cubs are simply playing catch-up to an accomplishment the Phillies checked off weeks ago.
┳┻|— Matt Winkelman (@Matt_Winkelman) May 8, 2016
┻┳| •.•) The Nationals were
┳┻|⊂ﾉ swept by the Phillies
The Phillies are 11-3 in one-run games!
Based on the funereal tone of me and John Stolnis' pre-season conversation about the bullpen, it was hardly a universal prediction that the Phillies' relief corps would be as solid - and at times, dominant - as it has been. And, based on other, sadder conversations, it was also not predicted that the offense would also be so clutch enough to make the Phillies MLB's best team when up by only one run. How did this happen. How was this allowed to happen.
The Braves are on pace to lose 134 games!
Have you looked at the Braves' record lately? They are 7-23, which is not only a pace for them to lose a horrid number of games, but also qualifies them for exile according to ancient baseball religious texts. Their manager's job is just about lost, they've dropped 14 of their last (including an eight-game losing streak), three of their starters are hitting below .200, and just look at this mess:
Look at all the wilting numbers and Jeff Francoeur's populating this list. It's incredible to behold, which the Phillies will, starting tomorrow night. Of course, the Braves will probably pound them into double digit deficits for three nights, somehow, now that I have said this.