When the smoke clears from tonight's 14-7 win over the nationals, there will be concern in the air, despite a dominating performance by the bullpen and offense.
Kyle Kendrick is starting to look like a pitcher who will never be able to consistenly get major league batters out. Although his numbers look good from last year, he hasn't really been effective since the regular season in 2007. His ERA was over 5 last year and after two starts, it rests above 17. The hope is that maybe he can turn things around still while Blanton is on the DL. However, it looks obvious that he will be sent to the minors when Lidge, Romero, and Blanton all make it back. The bullpen was stellar. Nelson Figuero, who earned his first win of the year, pitched half of what was basically 7 innings of bullpen work. Only one run was allowed in those 7 innings, including a mere 4 hits.
With news that Jimmy Rollins was placed on the 15 day DL with a calf strain that will keep him out 2-4 weeks, Wilson Valdez was called up and Juan Castro started. It really didn't matter tonight. Some of this was beating up horrible nationals pitching. However, it is impossible to discount what occurred tonight as anything other than a batting practice show. These hitters teed off all night. Even a lot of their outs were deep fly balls caught against the wall that sounded like home runs when hit. Some of the highlights:
- Shane Victorino: 4 for 5, 3 runs, 5 RBI (10 on the season), a triple, his 2nd home run of the year, and a double short of the cycle. He raised what was a horrible average all the way up from .161 to .250.
- Chase Utley: 2 for 4 with 2 home runs (3rd and 4th of the year) with 3 runs scored and 4 RBI giving him 10 on the season.
- Phillies: 5 for 10 with runners in scoring position.
- 2 comebacks in 1 game: the Phillies actually trailed this one 3-0 and 6-4.
Lastly, Brad Lidge finally started to show some progress today in a Single A tilt. He sat in the low 90s with his fastball and responded to walking the first batter by striking out the next two. Their single A batters, but its still progress.