So the Phillies split with the Giants over the weekend. The Saturday and Sunday wins came in dramatic fashion with game winnings hits, fearless comebacks, and Phillies pitching handling Bonds. The tailgate party was a blast – the beer was endless and the cheesesteaks on the grill were amazing. Cole Hamels continues to prove he is the real deal. His subtle maturity is noticeable both on and off the mound; and that why the one Cy Young he will win may just come this year.
The two games on either side of the weekend wins were complete beat downs, 13-0 and 8-1. It’s disheartening to see a team lose that bad – as if they can actually run on zero cylinders. Jon Lieber had another poor outing, allowing a five run inning in consecutive games. That kind of game has plagued his Phillies career even though he hasn’t given up that many runs in an inning previously this season. It usually puts Charlie Manuel in sitituations too difficult to handle and the game quickly slips out of control. Lieber’s 2-4 record is second worst on the team behind Freddy Garcia’s 1-4 mark. I thought briefly that maybe Garcia should have been moved to the closer role instead of Myers, but it seems as if Freddy has completely lost his fastball. His windup on Sunday reminded me of Tim Wakefield and I wonder if he’s not still hurt.
Speaking of Brett Myers, on Monday it was said that Charlie Manuel would not rule out the possibility of putting Myers back in the rotation. I doubt it will happen and we can’t second guess Myers’ move to the back of the bullpen every time there is an injury or the rotation is on the ropes. There is just simply not enough quality pitching on this team. There are plenty of good pitchers that with career years could propel the Phillies into the playoffs but that is unlikely to happen all at once. The Mets series which starts tonight will not give the Phils any pause to consider their unfortunate situation. Veterans Tom Glavine and Jamie Moyer face off tonight and the Mets will have to deal with Cole Hamels before interleague play starts again. Last season he shut out the Mets in an 8-inning gem. It’s a lot of pressure but he needs to continue at that pace just to keep this team afloat.