Upside Down Doubleheader

Win some, lose some…the Phillies could not have done so today in a more upside down fashion.  Two games; two very different results:

Game 1

Vance Worley made his first start in the majors today against the Marlins and did a pretty good job.  Certainly it was good enough to de-throne Kyle Kendrick from the 5th starters spot.  Kendrick has been awful and the Phillies pitching coach, Rich Dubee, was really upset about his performance yesterday.  Worley went 5 innings and allowed 2 runs; he was only pulled after 5 because the offense was sleeping and Charlie Manuel put in a pinch hitter.  Worley did his job; the offense did not.PXS106090614_large.jpg

The Phils offense had just 1 hit through 8 innings and that was a Brian Schneider single in the 2nd.  They were facing another pitcher making his starting debut, Adalberto Mendez.  Rather than beat up on the rookie, the Phillies swung at junk and popped up balls that were right down the middle.  They made a first-timer look like a Cy Young winner.

Just as disgusting as the offense was sloppy play in the field.  Raul Ibanez made two very bad throws in the 1st inning.  Later in the game, Placido Polanco watched a Dan Uggla double sail past him down the 3rd base line.  That was just a good hit.  But later, with Uggla at the plate again, Polanco was playing off the line…again.  Result?  Same thing; a double down the line.  Why was Polanco playing off the line when he had just gotten burned there in Uggla’s last at bat?  Ugh.

A lot about this game was inexplicable, much like the Phillies magical vanishing offense all year long.  When you see this team play like this, it makes you wonder how they have stayed in the NL East race all year.

There were some other revelations in the last few days as well.  Clearly, Mike Zagurski is not going to make it in the Bigs.  This kid has been up, down, multiple injuries, up and down again and today, with yet another chance to show what he has, he failed miserably.  3 runs allowed on 2 hits and a walk…it was bad.  Scott Mathieson did the same thing yesterday when he walked 2 batters and showed a serious lack of control.  I feel for these guys, but maybe the Phillies need to move on?

Ok, so let’s see if they are still asleep for game two…

Game Two

Oh, here are the bats!  Game 2 was the polar opposite of Game 1.  Much like a mental patient suffering from multiple personality disorder, the Phillies played two totally different games today.  The Game 2 persona is certainly the one Phillies fans would like to see more of.

A five run 2nd inning got this game off to a good start.  Jimmy Rollins, batting from the 5-hole, led off the inning with a single.  Raul Ibanez followed his lead and then Domonic Brown walked.  With the bases loaded, Carlos Ruiz worked out a walk for an easy RBI.  Later that same inning with 2 outs, Placido Polanco hit a 2-run double and then Chase Utley singled to score Polanco.

P8249141 Utley.jpg
It was a very upside down kind of day for Utley.  He did not have a hit in the first game, but for Game 2, Utley racked up 2 hits, 2 RBI and he was also hit by a pitch.  Brown got a rare start as Jayson Werth was rested and he managed to work out 2 walks.  But having sat on the bench for a while, Brown looks rusty.  Hopefully, this start will get him back into the “swing” of things.

Starting the game was pitcher Roy Oswalt who had some issues with the long ball.  He allowed 3 homers for 4 runs in the first 5 innings.  This seems to be a “Roy” issue this week; Roy Halladay gave up 4 runs on 4 homers on Saturday against the Brewers.  Luckily, the Phillies bats were heating up tonight to bail Oswalt out of trouble, as they also did on Saturday for Halladay.

With a 7-4 lead, Ryan Madson took care of the 8th inning after JC Romero walked the first batter.  Brad Lidge pitched the 9th and recorded the save!  Lidge has been super lately…keep it up, Brad!

Tomorrow night at 7:05pm, Joe Blanton will pitch in game 3 of this series with the Fish.  The Braves lost today so with one win and one loss today, the Phillies are 1/2 game behind them in the NL East.

And a few reminders: Do not forget to check out my new Facebook community page, “I Want A Hug From Mike Sweeney.”  And when you are done there, hop over to the Phillies #1 fan contest and VOTE for me!  You can vote up to 25 times a day :O)  Thank you to all for your support!

 

Worley photo by CBSsports.com; Utley photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

3 Comments

Jenn: It’s funny how a team can look so different so quickly. It’s kind of frustrating. Then again, it shows that they are only human….evey team has bad games. But at least the day ended on a good note.
-Virginia
http://southernbelle.mlblogs.com

Jenn,
It is a real bummer Worley did not get more support today in that first game. It would have gone a long way to boosting his confidence, but it sounds like he might fit right into that Phillies rotation without a hitch.
Hopefully in his next outing Worley can get the bats behind him then get a well deserved beer shower for his first “W”.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Jenn, I always love your photo shopped pics. They crack me up!

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

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