Last night’s NLCS Game 4 was just a little too stressful for my tastes. After jumping out to an early lead in the first inning via a Ryan Howard long ball (which I missed, by the way, while helping my young procrastinator finish a school project which was due today), the Phils’ bats went silent as Randy Wolf found his groove for the next several innings.
Joe Blanton, on the other hand, started out strong, but then began to falter the second time through the Dodgers’ lineup. The Dodgers took a 4-2 lead, and I began to resemble this:
Yep, I was giving some serious hairy eyeballs to the Dodgers, particularly when ManChild, oops I mean ManRam, was for once not “being Manny” in the outfield, as he ran in to make a shoestring catch on an Ibanez liner to end a Phillies scoring threat.
The Phils did manage to cut the margin to 4-3, but the Dodgers still held a one-run lead heading into the bottom of the ninth. But now it was payback time. Last Friday, it was the Phillies who blew the one-run lead in the bottom of the eighth to lose, 2-1, when their pitching began to unravel.
Jonathon Broxton, last night was your turn.
Broxton retired Ibanez for out number one. Matt Stairs came in to pinch hit, and worked a walk; Eric Bruntlett came in to pinch run. After Carlos Ruiz was hit by a pitch to put two men on base, Greg Dobbs came in to pinch hit and was retired on a humpback liner to third.
Two outs, I’m starting to imagine how bad my mood will be today.
Up to the plate comes Jimmy Rollins, who was only hitting .167 so far in the NLCS (not good, Jimmy). Miraculously, Jimmy smoked a liner to the gap in right to score both Bruntlett and Ruiz. Happiness ensued! I felt like doing this:
but unfortunately I don’t live near a beach (must change that situation!).
In the postgame interview, Rollins looked like he was doing his best Etta James impersonation:
Love the look, Jimmy – I hope we see it again this season!
The Joy of the NLCS Schedule (she says sarcastically)
So why is it that during the regular season, teams can play eight, nine, even ten games in a row, but come the postseason, they can’t seem to play more than two days in a row?? Why exactly do we need an off-day in the middle of the three games being played in Philadelphia? I’m sure it has something to do with TV and advertising revenues, but I don’t like it.
The Joy of Technology
It seems that StubHub experienced an “email glitch”, and accidentally sent messages to fans of the Mets that said,
“Be there alongside your New York Mets as they chase baseball immortality. Go to StubHub, where you’ll find a fantastic selection of tickets to every playoff game — so you experience the championship chase live and in person.”
Hee hee! I wonder if there were any dimbulb Mets fans who got confused and actually tried to order tickets?
Apparently fans of a few other non-playoff teams also got erroneous messages (see full story here), but I always take secret glee in the travails of Mets fans. Sorry, but I can’t help it :-).
Whew! Just finished a busy weekend in our household. Now it’s time to catch up. First off, on Friday night, I was alerted by my good friend Jenn at Phillies Phollowers that I was the Featured blog. Holy guacamole! Or, as I replied to her, “OMG! I haven’t even put anything about me in the “Read about me” section yet… ” So tonight I will definitely get to work on that.
Of course, the big Phillies news over the weekend was Ryan Howard signing a three-year deal with the Phillies that will pay him $54 million over that time span. This averages out to $18 million per year, so he’s essentially getting what he wanted, and the Phillies avoid arbitration for three years. After that, he’s a free agent, so who knows what will happen then? At least for the next three years, it is one less headache to worry about.
Also over the weekend, two former Phillies found homes for the coming season.
Randy Wolf returns to the Dodgers with a one-year, $5 million deal. Though never a “lights-out” type of pitcher, Wolfie was a reliable lefty, and a fan favorite (wonder what the Wolf Pack is doing these days?). I was sorry to see him leave the Phillies, but I understand his desire to play closer to home. I wish him well in the coming season!
Tom Gordon signed a one-year, $500,000 deal with Arizona, with incentives and bonuses that could bring it up to $2.5 million. Gordon was unfortunately hampered by injury while a Phillie; good luck to you as a D-back!
Yesterday, I wrote about Billy Sunday. Turns out he is the only major-leaguer with that surname. So I decided to see how many Mondays there were in the big leagues. Guess what? Only one! Rick Monday, who played from 1966 to 1984, spending time with the A’s, Cubs, and Dodgers. He’s best known for an incident that occurred in April 1976, when he ran from his position in centerfield to save an American flag from being burned by a fan who had run onto the field.
Kudos to you, Rick Monday, for standing up for what you believe in! Until tomorrow, thus ends my “Monday mash-up”. Only 4 days and 22 hours until pitchers and catchers report – woo hoo!
(Rick Monday photo found on mlb.com; all other photos are mine)