Quickly now. Worst game of the season?
Let’s see ...
They weren’t shut out, but the only run came on a bases loaded walk in the ninth after Ryan Dempster walked them full.
The Phillies banged out four hits, which might be a season low or close to it.
They lost a game returning to Citizen's Bank Park after a seven-game road trip with a day off in between.
A win against the Cubs had even more impact than a win inside the division. The wild card is the only thing the Phils can win. (Beerleaguer issues early congratulations to the Braves for another remarkable season.)
Tuesday night also marked the first game featuring the stay-put, post-deadline team “built to contend for the playoffs.” Yippie!
To add salt to the fleshwounds, they squandered a bases-loaded opportunity in the ninth.
Yep. I’ve answered my own question.
For nine innings, the Phils attracted flies under the stinking heat. At one point, Pat Burrell’s leg fell clean off and Jimmy Rollins had to be carted off in a wheelbarrow.
Bring out your dead. Bring out your dead.
Carlos Zambrano tied the toe tags and deserves credit for pitching good ball, but not too much. Some other force was at play. It must have been the uncanny actionless-ness of David Bell and Mike Lieberthal.
“The Great Black Hole” succeeded at one thing tonight – making sure Vicente Padilla led off the next inning. Bell, one of their best defenders, even missed a key grounder that allowed the first run of the game to score, in addition to striking out with the bases loaded in the ninth.
Once again, the Black Hole warped all the Phils runs and fun away. For new readers checking in from Philly Future, George S., a regular reader of mine, has mathematic proof the Phils score many, many more runs when Bell and Lieberthal do not hit back-to-back.
What else …
Has it really come to the point with Pat Burrell when, with no outs and a runner on second, we’re just hoping he hits the ball to the right side to advance the runner to third? Those are some low expectations for a cleanup hitter.
Welcome to the splendor of Phillies stretch-run baseball.