OK, I realize that doesn’t sound terribly optimistic. But considering the Phillies were just swept by the Braves, and by the Orioles and Blue Jays not long before, simply avoiding another sweep is cause for mild happiness.
Having last posted on Monday, I didn’t really have much to say during the week, as I was following that little bit of childhood wisdom, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Due to the aforementioned sweep(s), I certainly wasn’t thinking very nice things.
Earlier this week, the Phillies called up Rodrigo Lopez from the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA) to make tonight’s start against the Mets.
To be fair, Blanton and Happ did not pitch horribly, but the Phils’ offense didn’t help them out at all. Hamels, on the other hand, did pitch horribly, for the second start in a row.
Thankfully, tonight it was an opponent’s turn to have a lousy start, as Livan Hernandez gave up 7 runs in 3-plus innings of work. Lopez gave up 2 runs in 6 1/3 innings, and got the win as the Phillies prevailed, 7-2.
This morning, my husband declared that he was no longer going to watch the Phillies, due to their recent crappy play. Since we’re supposed to go to the game this Friday with the kids, I thought that was rather interesting. Was he going to sit there with his eyes closed? Nevertheless, the game did end up being watched in our house tonight, and it wasn’t turned on by me.
Wishing you all a happy and healthy 4th of July!
(photo by me)
On Tuesday, while the kids were in school, my husband and I decided to play hooky from responsible adulthood, and spend a beautiful day at the ballpark. This was made possible by a promotion called Education Day, held by the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. The result of this promotion was a 10:35 start time. Just perfect to get the kids on the bus and make the drive to Coca Cola Park.
When we got there, catcher Lou Marson waved a friendly greeting!
Nah, not really. He was just doing his pre-game stretching.
The IronPigs are the Phillies’ AAA affiliate in the International League. On this day they were hosting the Gwinnett Braves, an affiliate of (duh!) the Braves. I hate when teams give all their minor-league affiliates the same team name as the parent club. Boring! Sure, I know that way there’s no mistaking who they’re affiliated with, but please. The imaginative names are so much more fun, and they have nifty mascots, too. Like FeRROUS:
Fe is the symbol for iron in the periodic table of the elements; ferrous is an adjective meaning “of, related to, or containing iron”. See, this is educational!
For even more knowledge, the IronPigs featured little education nuggets on the scoreboard between innings:
I think there were a few others (I seem to remember one about a curveball curving more in Boston than Colorado), but I wasn’t always looking at the scoreboard between innings. They distracted me with things like the Great Pork Race:
Lest I forget, there was also some baseball being played. Here are some photos of IronPigs starter Rodrigo Lopez and Braves starter Todd Redmond:
IronPigs second baseman Pablo Ozuna made a fantastic catch in short center to rob a Brave of a hit:
During the game, instead of the usual head shots on the scoreboard, drawings from young fans were featured:
Lou Marson is looking a bit Spock-ish, and David Newhan seems to have used a bit too much tanning cream. A very neat idea though, and I’m sure a big thrill for the kids to see their names and artwork up there.
Mike Koplove closed out the ninth to get the save for the IronPigs, who won 3-1.
After the game it was time to head back to reality. Darn! All in all, an absolutely perfect day for baseball. I hope they have more early games like this one. We will be back!
(all photos by me)