In the wake of the most arousing night since the 1993 season, we digress and recognize the East is far from a foregone conclusion, as the Phillies must leave nothing to chance against the visiting Nationals.
It’s 1:30 in the afternoon and I've just recovered from the emotional hangover from last evening. For someone who’s spent a great deal of energy criticizing a baseball team for playing tight in clutch situations, the finger can be pointed right back at this writer for internalizing the most amazing period in the history of Beerleaguer. Anyone can write a big headline, but where's the poetry in that?
But it’s somehow fitting, isn’t it? The spontaneity and economy of it. Allowing myself time to take it in. Read the comments. Page through the out-of-town papers and national Web sites. Download Don Henley’s “Dirty Laundry,” Pat Burrell’s theme music, and keeping it on repeat. That's what an uninhibited fan would do.
“Kick ‘em when they’re up; kick ‘em when they’re down.”
And just like any true Philadelphia fan, I’ve spent a great deal of time fretting over the next 72 hours. Everyone says the Mets are one loss from breaking, yet I keep seeing two very winnable games in front of them, tonight against Byung-Hyun Kim, a pure dud they handled easily less than a week ago, and Saturday against Chris Seddon, and who the hell is he?
The Mets are playing like pure garbage, but shouldn’t the NL East deadlock provide them with something they haven’t had the entire season? True motivation and desperation – instead of the artificial, canned variety from Willie Randolph and others? Talk is cheap. A wounded animal will do anything to survive. Up until yesterday, there was always a chance the predator would lose interest and disappear.
And there’s still a chance of that. The Phillies host the bottom-feeding Nationals and must be aware they’re the favorites. Will they sink their teeth into these bunny rabbits or bat them around a little and let them hop away? They face Tim Redding tonight, and they let him off the hook just last Saturday. Redding, a right-hander, has two pitches and no velocity.
Meanwhile, they counter with Cole Hamels. If he’s on a pitch count, it must be mandated by the front office and becomes just another reason to blame Phillies brass for screwing up the season. Let the colt gallop free.
Colts are carnivores, right?