Phillies 8, Mets 4: Last night in a rare twist, Roy Halladay, who was still very good, was upstaged by his teammates. Right on cue, the calendar flipped to September and Ryan Howard flipped a switch. The Big Piece homered for a third-straight night and also blasted a double off the wall to dead-away center field. Carlos Ruiz reached base in all five at bats, keeping his lusty on-base percentage hovering around .400. Chooch also contributed a heady play on the bases, forcing a rundown between first and second that allowed Raul Ibanez to score with two outs. I've said it before and I'll say it again: team MVP. Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino also pitched in multi-hit games; Werth has been a thorn in the Mets' side this season, while Vic continues to look like the Phillies' best answer to their lead-off problems during this recent lineup experiment. Defensively, Wilson Valdez came to play. I thought he showed great range and a laser arm.
As for Halladay, he was reportedly miffed to be taken out of the game midway through the 8th, but at 116 pitches, enough is enough. Halladay pitched an iffy third, but battled through it and collected his 18th win, which is tied for the league lead. He keeps winning, but this has probably been his worst stretch as a Phillie, and understandably so. One can't expect a pristine performance every turn, especially with his innings near 230. He hasn't been as sharp and he's made some uncharacteristic mistakes. Frustration is starting to show. But it's understandable; it's a long season. He's probably just anxious for October.
Notes: Jimmy Rollins is likely out of the lineup again today.[Jump to the newest comments] [In-Game Live!]