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The Monday Gush: J.P. Crawford is doing better!

Welcome to your weekly reminder that not everything is terrible. Please form a line.

Philadelphia Phillies v New York Yankees Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

J.P. Crawford is getting better at Triple-A!

While the Phillies scuffle, it only makes whispers of young players being promoted intensify, until the point that we’re all just screaming in each other’s ears about when J.P. Crawford or Nick Williams is going to be deemed ready to help the world’s most helpless offense. We haven’t heard much, outside of somber head-shaking, from Lehigh Valley since celebrating the promotion that sent Crawford there, and that’s for a reason: Through 34 games, he’s hit .222 and generally had a low impact on the IronPigs’ pursuit of the Int’l League’s North Division lead. Unless, of course, you count the last two weeks, when the kid started to catch on; in that time, his slash line has been .328/.385/.414, with 19 hits in his last 15 games (including six multi-hit performances).

Peter Bourjos is hitting like crazy!

These Phillies will occasionally see a burst of life out of a musty, cobwebby corner of their lineup from which you never expected much more than spiders to emerge. But Bourjos has been the unequivocal leader of the offense (what) for two weeks, having gained all sorts of confidence when he crossed into .200 BA territory on June 13. Since then, he’s had multi-hit games, he’s had extra-base hits - he even hit a home run. That’s all four bases in one play! Now, he’s hitting .250, an absurd number for anyone who has seen one of his less successful at-bats. We’ve only got to see him racing cars on the freeway with that blazing Bourjos speed we were promised for him to live up to his reputation.

The Phillies trashed Madison Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto!

They may have lost the series in San Francisco, but don’t tell me the flat Phillies offense, with its almost entirely last place slash line of .232/.286/.375, didn’t give fits to a pair of hurlers in SF who thought they’d walk over them. All it took was a mighty Cameron Rupp swing to tear down Bumgarner, and every time the Giants would sneak back into the lead on Sunday, Cueto would find a way to cough it back up. Even year or not, that’s got to cause a twinge of doubt moving forward. Did the Phillies start a Giants subplot that ends with their two best pitchers turning on each other in desperation, just before the playoffs, and unraveling their team’s scrappy, romanticized playoff run with hideous locker room turmoil? Undoubtedly, yes.

One time, Jim Bunning no-hit the Mets!

This past week was the 52nd anniversary of Bunning’s Father’s Day perfecto. Did he eventually become a crotchety old Red State senator? Yes he did!

But imagine how pleased his father must have been that day.

“Bring me New York Metropolitans’ heads on a plate,” Mr. Bunning demanded.

Two hours and nineteen minutes later, his son returned. “Will there be anything else, father?”

Jorge Alfaro hit another home run!

He now has eight! And if it weren’t for the 43 SO and 4 BB, there wouldn’t be too many complaints to have about the young catcher! Did you know he’s hitting .301 and, even more impressively, maintains a 44% CS rate? If not, it’s time to start knowing that.

Cameron Rupp’s nickname is “Big Head!”

After Rupp dropped a baseball off 433 feet from where he first met it, Pete Mackanin inadvertently revealed his catcher’s nickname.

“Nah, he crushed that,” the manager said. “Big Head, he’s come up with some big hits for us. He’s been working on his swing path and little by little he’s been getting results.”

Do what you will with this information.

Vince Velasquez is healthy enough to start!

It cost the Phillies Elvis Araujo, but Velasquez is back on the roster and set to pitch on this very day against the Diamondbacks. His bicep strain is no more, and he looks to go longer than two hitters deep into this contest, and we can only hope that the furious fire with which he began the season has been rekindled after some rest. VV was certainly eager to return, telling folks even before his first rehab start in Lehigh Valley that he did not intend to be there very long. We’ll see how that eagerness translates on the mound; with Aaron Nola’s tanking, this rotation could use some good news.

No, no; don’t talk about that now, this is The Monday Gush, not The Monday Suck. That’s totally different.

Jake Peavy complimented the Phillies!

Aw, that’s no nice. Thank you, member of the San Francisco Giants. You’re so likable and fun.

The Phillies are signing most of their draft picks!

Some people worry that draft picks are little trickster gods, pulling fast ones on the teams that drafted them by going back to school instead of running away to become a big leaguer. It happens, humiliating the team in question and leaving them with what feels like a wasted pick. Not the Phillies, though! They’ve already locked down more than half of their draftees with ironclad contracts from which they’ve yet to realize they will never escape. Huzzah!

Look at this nun taking a selfie with a beer!

Yo is that nun single.