The Phils have reached a point where a hard-hit ball for an out qualifies as a highlight, which makes Raul Ibanez one of the standout performers of Monday's loss.
The Phillies made a deal with the devil the first 10 games, trading their souls for an inflated BABIP. Now the devil has come to collect his due. As CSNPhilly's Jim Salisbury notes in his sad gamer, Carlos Ruiz is hitless in his last 22 at-bats, worse than Ibanez and his tree trunk of a bat. Raul is hitless in his last 21 at-bats. Meanwhile, Wilson Valdez is two for his last 22, while Jimmy Rollins is just five for his last 35. As much as I appreciate 15 wins and all the good pitching, I'm eager for hitting season. Aside from a small handful of prospects, most of them lumbering first-base types, the Phillies aren't hitting at any level of their system. The pitching has been solid, however. Lakewood won its game over Charleston Monday as left-hander Mario Hollands went seven innings. The 6-5, 2010 10th-round pick out of UC Santa Barbara has a 1.93 ERA in his first four starts. Lehigh Valley lost 5-3, while Reading and Clearwater were washed out.
Hot: Jonathan Pettibone, Clearwater. The 2007 third-round pick appears to be turning the corner in his age 20-21 season. The Phils must be encouraged by his early strikeout and walk totals. In 24 innings, the groundball right-hander has 18 punchouts, two walks and hasn't surrendered a home run. He's also been tough on lefties, which was the case last season.
Not: Scott Mathieson, Lehigh Valley. He's allowed 10 hits and 8 walks in just 8 1-3 innings at Lehigh Valley. With Mike Stutes and Mike Zagurski already summoned to Philadelphia, Mathieson's stock continues to drop among his relief peers.