There seemed to be many more Phillies fans in the crowd today, but it didn’t help much. The Phillies’ bats were once again silenced by Nats’ starting pitching as Esteban Loaiza recorded 11 strikeouts – matching a career high set against the Phils earlier this year. In fact, the Phils only managed 4 hits and Bobby Abreu continued his hitless weekend. Loaiza did what the Gavin Floyd couldn’t – besides garnering a win – that is, save the bullpen. The Phils thus end their 12-game road trip 6-6, but with losses by the Astros and Marlins thankfully retain the Wild Card lead. The best part of the game was catching the final innings on UPN down here and afterwards they showed this movie, Brewsters Millions, a remake with Richard Pryor. It’s about a minor league ballplayer who inherits $300 million but has to spend $30 million in a month before he can collect. It really has nothing to do with this post, but it’s a real funny movie, so check it out. Ok, back to the playoff race.
The Phils have a lot to think about on their ride back up I-95. Not the least of which will be Andy Pettitte, Roy Oswalt, Brandon Backe whom they will face to kick off a 10 game home stand. The Phils have dropped 9 straight to the ‘Stros dating back to last August. There will also have to be a certain bit of soul searching to decide if the club is mentally ready for this stretch run. Houston, Florida, Atlanta are coming to our house and looking to push the Phils around. I don’t imagine for a second any of these three teams think the Phillies should be contending for the playoff spots that were meant all season for them. This is exactly the opportunity the Phillies should be looking for to show they are legit. The beauty of loving the Phils is this when they either thrive or fail. They will either roll over and die like so many a year or realize this is the m.o of the baseball club of Philadelphia, PA. When a better team comes to town and think they can dispose of this hapless bunch, they hunker down do what it takes to win and smash these teams in the teeth. Home sweet home, Go Phils!