Thanks to Werth and Feliz goin' back-to-back to open the 8th (snapping the 4-4 tie) -- and with another shaky bullpen episode -- the Phils, once again, held on for a narrow victory over The MLB's Class-AAA affiliate on the bank of the Anacostia River.
For those of us who followed the action on-line, then watched the ballgame later on "Nats Encore" on Comcast, the synapses are firing.
GODDAMN, DID WERTH FRICKIN' CRUSH THAT BALL TO DEAD CENTER OR WHAT?
No doubt ... THAT was a fuckin' warhead. It achieved "Mammoth Blast Status."
STILL, WHAT IS IT ABOUT WERTH'S SWING WHICH PUZZLES US SO?
Mechanically, it's a mess. He looks like he's using a shovel to hit a two-handed tennis backhand.
REMEMBER HOW WE DOGGED BURRELL FOR ALL THOSE YEARS ... HOW HE HAD THAT EXAGGERATED, ONE-HANDED "OLE!" FINISH?
Exactly. When Werth follows through, he looks as tangled up as Bake McBride or Von Hayes did when they swung and missed. Burrell was a little different since he had a hitting-area red zone which was the size of a postage stamp. Which is why he was/is a .255-or-whatever career hitter. Werth, like Burrell, is patient (JW, we think, still leads The MLB in "pitches per AB"), so he will wait on a pitch to crush (which he oftentimes gets). Since he doesn't have a quick bat, he's not going to foul off many 2-strike pitches. But, if he's up 2-0 or 3-1 in the count ... look out.
SO, IS HE BETTER THAN PAT THE BUNNY?
God, yes. He's fleet, he's a nifty fielder, it doesn't require consecutive ground-rule doubles to score him from third ... He might not average upper-20 HRs for the next 7 seasons, but he's more werth-while than Burrell ever was.
WASN'T IT SAD THAT A PITCHER NAMED "CLIPBOARD" WAS VICTIMIZED SO THOROUGHLY, ESPECIALLY BY FELIZ?
Not at all. Clipboard's just another juco pitcher tryin' to survive on The MLB level.
DIBBLE SPENT A LOT OF TIME WASTING HIS BREATH ON PITCHING STRATEGIES DURING THE FIRST THREE INNINGS AS THE PHILS WERE PECKING GARRETT MOCK (WHOEVER HE IS) TO DEATH.
Baseball is overwrought by that nowadays -- ex-players, ex-GMs w/ sex addictions, etc. trapped between the gravitational pull of the planets Theoretica and Hypothetica. A douche such as Dibble kills viewers brain cells by reciting the do's and don'ts of some antiquated pitching guidelines.
SO, THE "DO THIS, DON'T DO THAT" GUIDELINES ARE NOT THE PROPER METHOD?
Not when ya ain't got no stuff. Look ... the mental approach can be massaged to death in a rules-n'-regulations paradigm. "Get yer breaking ball over to set up the fastball ... " "Work up and down and in n' out ... " "Get ahead of the hitters ... " "Throw yer fastball for strikes to set-up the off-speed stuff ..." IT'S ALL GARBAGE. Guys like Garrett Mock and Tyler Clipboard will always have ERAs in the 5.00 and 6.00 range because they have one good fastball out of every 7 thrown (by "good" we mean "movement ... late action ... tailing ... always tailing ... "). Preaching "The Rules of Pitching" to these guys is like handing the baseball to your niece and saying, "Heather (unless her name is Caitlin) trust yer stuff and get this guy out, OK?"
THEN, WHAT WE'RE SAYING HERE IS THAT GARRETT MOCK AND THAT CLIPBOARD GUY ARE NO BETTER THAN A NIECE NAMED HEATHER OR POSSIBLY CAITLIN?
Precisely. Every time those P's retire a batter, the Nats should throw a frickin' parade down Main Street. The raw talent simply isn't there. It isn't for a lot of pitchers. Lookit Brad Penny.
YEAH, WHAT WAS UP WITH THAT GUY SPENDING AUGUST TOSSIN' SLOP TOWARD THE PLATE FOR THE BOSOX ... THEN HE GOES TO THE GIANTS, COMES INTO PHILLY AND THROWS 8 SHUTOUT INNINGS LAST WEEK?
Well, he is a former All-Star ... but, the only thing that the initials "B.P." stood for in Boston, was the in-game "batting practice" that Penny was pitchin'. He, obviously, relocated "his stuff" and, apparently, his confidence (or some floor wax to huff before the game).
ISN'T THAT AN OVERSIMPLIFICATION?
It certainly is, Stanley. But, Dibble's just as dismissive when he's tellin' us that the correct mental approach makes pitching pretty easy. The complex nature of mental makeup and physical tools is why guys who clock 100 MPH and guys who drive a truck for a living have exactly the same number of "quality starts" -- zero.