After being shut-out 1-0 on Tuesday, the Giants were looking for revenge and they got it in the form of new acquisition, Brad Penny. Penny struggled with the Red Sox and had an ERA near 6.00, but the move to the National League seems to be the cure. Phillies hitters looked ridiculous all night long and managed only 5 hits in the game, all singles.
But this is nothing new; the Phillies have been in an offensive slump for a while now and there are no signs that it will end anytime soon, especially with Tim Lincecum pitching for the Giants tonight. When things are going bad, a Cy Young winner is the last person you want to see. But they have no choice and will need to figure out where the bats have disappeared to.
JA Happ has pitched well all year, but is getting no run support at all. Happ has the third lowest run support of any pitcher in the NL with more than 100 innings and he has still has managed a 2.77 ERA and a 10-4 record. Last night, he made a few mistakes, including allowing back-to-back homers in the 6th inning which tallied 3 runs for the Giants. Happ still pitched a good game with just the one bad inning that did him in; but again, no runs = no win.
And while it is always nice to see Aaron Rowand back in Philly, he did hit one of those home runs. And what was this all about exactly? See Carlos Ruiz pointing?
Sorry, could not resist. It does kind of look like he might pee on the plate, but he hit a home run instead. Just as effective, I suppose.
Here are few non-offensive shots from the game:
Charlie Manuel needs to start smacking some heads together in that clubhouse. The inability to score runs, especially those in scoring position, is becoming a major issue in what is usually a breakout month for this team. Raul Ibanez has not been able to hit the side of a barn since the All-Star break, after what was an amazing first half. Now, Ibanez is hitting into double plays all the time which is killing the offense.
But everyone is guilty; since the Atlanta series, Shane Victorino has 2 hits in his last 20 at-bats; Jayson Werth is 4 for 16; Jimmy Rollins is 4 for 20. And just for fun, Ibanez is 1 for his last 21 at-bats. Ugh. Someone please find the offense…now!
On to more fun topics: Before the game, Cole Hamels was awarded with the Roberto Clemente award for his community service. His wife Heidi joined him on the field and if you were not sure before if she was pregnant, it is pretty obvious now. How cute are these two with all their aspirations to adopt like 500 African babies, plus popping out a few of their own? All together now…”Awwww!”
Here is a Photo Album with more pictures from last nights very depressing game. It was Latino Heritage night and there are some shots from that as well as the pre-game activities. Enjoy!
Photos by Jenn
It was a tight one, but Cole Hamels pitched the Phillies to a 1-0 win; a complete game shut-out against the Giants. He has not only found his Mojo, but Hamels also found his curveball and even his fastball location. Towards the end of the game, Hamels retired 21 batters in a row.
By the 9th inning, he had a 1 hit shut-out going when Rich Aurilia knocked a single and it looked like things might get scary. But then Hamels busted out his new and improved pick-off move and nailed the pinch runner trying to steal second base. He nailed down the final two outs and sent the crowd home happy.
In 9 innings, Hamels struck out 9 batters and gave up only 2 hits and 1 walk. All that and he even stole a base in the game; it was the first stolen base of his career. Is Hamels back? It certainly looks that way.
Both pitchers were dealing tonight and Jonathan Sanchez shut down the Phillies offense. Ryan Howard managed to knock in the only run for the Phillies after Shane Victorino singled, stole a base and advanced on a Chase Utley sacrifice. Howard had 2 hits in the game, but the rest of the offense was mostly anemic. But all is well that ends well and the Phillies take Game 1 of this series.
The series continues with the Giants tomorrow at 7:05pm with JA Happ on the mound. Tim Lincecum was originally scheduled to start for the Giants, but with the new acquisition of Brad Penny off waivers from the Red Sox, it looks like Penny will get the nod; Lincecum will go on Thursday night. I will be at the game tomorrow hoping for the Happ-Y outcome :O)
Ryan Howard has been named NL Player of the Week right on the heels of Jayson Werth receiving the same honor last week. Howard batted .393 with 5 homers and 12 RBI. September is here and Howard is all warmed up!
Photo by Jenn