The 76 extra fans which were shoehorned into The Cit today -- surpassing yesterday's stadium record of 46,452 -- should've chanted for a curtain call from all of their Phillie action heroes after Shane Victorino's soft liner landed softly in Clint Barmes' glove for the game's final out.
OH, YEAH? WHY'ZAT?
'Cuz unless the Fightin's earn a split in mile-high Colorado over the weekend, today was the final game at The Cit for 2009 (which isn't that bad, all things considered, given that the radiance of '08 will keep us warm for many winters to come, et cetera ... )
IS THE IMPLICATION HERE THAT PEDRO AND BLANTON MIGHT NOT GET IT DONE DURING THAT SNOWBALL FIGHT SAT./SUN IN DENVER -- AND, THUS, CLIFF LEE WON'T BE STARTING IN GAME 5 BEFORE A RECORD CROWD OF 45,600-PLUS AT THE CIT?
Yes ... that is the implication.
IS THAT BECAUSE SOMEBODY NAMED DEXTER FOWLER WAS A ONE-MAN WRECKING CREW TODAY?
Exactly. Dex had that sac bunt in the 1st which got somebody named Gonzalez to 3rd base for Helton's 27-foot, RBI tapper. Then, Dex broke everybody's hearts with that sac fly to LF before re-breaking everybody's heart with that sac fly to RF for the final Rocky run.
HOW MANY TIMES IN 12 YRS. DIDJA GO TO THE ROCKY RUN AT THE 175/DOBBIN ROAD JUNCTION BEFORE IT WENT OUTTA BUSINESS?
Three ... maybe four.
WHAT WENT WRONG THERE? THAT PLACE ALWAYS SEEMED TO BE DOING WELL.
Perhaps it was the Dept. of Health which had the final say.
SPEAKING OF 'WHAT WENT WRONG,' DIDN'T COLBERT'S BODY LANGUAGE SEEM ENTIRELY MESSED-UP TODAY?
It's been wrong ever since the day that GM Biology Major didn't pull the trigger on that "Hamels For Halladay" (straight-up!) deal on July 31. Colbert Hamels -- some of us call him "Colbert" (maybe as a tribute to the way that nobody ever called Colbert Dale "Toby" Harrah by his given first name) -- continued his usual '09 trend of looking "off-kilter," particularly when that Torrealba guy (the Mrs. mistakenly called him "Telemundo" yesterday ... not long after she asked, "Who names their kid 'Yorvit'?" -- to which the comeback was, "Who names their kid 'Spillborghs'?") ... wait ... where were we?
COLBERT VS. YORVIT ... OR HAMELS FOR HALLADAY, STRAIGHT UP. WAIT A SECOND ... THE JAYS NEVER WOULDA BIT ON THAT DEAL, WOULD THEY HAVE?
Sure they would've. Initially, we read all about how the Jays might deal Halladay, if the Phils put together a package of Happ, Drabek and/or prized outfield prospects Michael Taylor and/or Dominic Brown. After GM Biology Major shipped pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Jason Knapp, shortstop Jason David and catcher Lou Marson to Cleveland for Cliff Lee and Ben Francisco, he still had ammo to get Halladay.
Hamels ... "the established star" (wink, wink). For those of us who KNEW that Hamels would go from 7-5 at the trade deadline to 3-6 during his final 12 regular-season starts, this was a sucker deal. GM Biology Major could've held onto the youngsters and dumped the P who has years n' years ahead of 12-10, 11-11, 13-12, 12-12, 11-12, 12-12, 13-11, and acquired Halladay, even if he has only five or six more 15-7 seasons left in the tank.
WHAT IF THE JAYS HAD BALKED AT THE "STRAIGHT-UP" PART?
No biggie ... toss in the proverbial "players to be named later" -- y'know, guys such as catcher Tuffy Gosewisch (.218 / 3 / 34 playin' for mgr. Razor Shines' Clearwater Threshers last season) or maybe even the newly-acquired Ben Francisco.
Don't get all whiny and pissy ... be creative ...
NOW COLBERT IS PHILLY'S PROBLEM FOR THE NEXT (x) YEARS. GOODY GUMDROPS (OR "FRICKIN'-A") ...
Halladay wouldn't have served up a big, ol' lollipop which Orbit Telemundo could jack into the LF seats.
Alas, we cannot lament about the pitchers we don't have ... but, we can make sure that Colbert never replaces Arnulfo "Nino" Espinosa's name as the No. 35 on the All-Time Phillies Roster which exists in here (pointing to head, where the brain dwells) and in here (pointing to chest, where the heart beats).
SHOULD WE BOTHER TO SPEND THE NEXT (x) YEARS WONDERING WHAT COLBERT'S PROBLEM IS (aside from the fact that baseballreference.com has his name as Cole Michael Hamels and not "Colbert")???
No need -- 'cuz, bascially, deep down, Colbert knows that none of us really has any faith in him. The guy was 0-2/8.38 in those final two regular-season starts before today (both at home ... vs. Hou. and Fla.). And, aside from the 3-0, CG masterpiece at L.A. and the 1-0 gem vs. Frisco, he's been a big pile of Not King Cole this season. In fact, most of what he did this year can best be categorized as either Ruffinish or Carmanesque.
AREN'T WE REQUIRED, BY LAW, TO CUT NOT-KING-COLE SOME SLACK BECAUSE OF LAST YEAR'S POSTSEASON AND BECAUSE HEIDI, AT ANY MOMENT NOW, WILL SQUEEZE OUT OF HER UTERUS A BABY WHO'LL RECEIVE A VERRRRRRY LAME-O NAME, SUCH AS 'MADISON' OR 'CASSIDY' OR 'CONNER' OR 'MADISON' OR 'COLBERTINA'?
Ethically ... "yes." Legally? "No fuckin' way."
The good neighbor policy applies only to State Farm.
"Get the fuckin' lead out, Ace!"
There's nuthin' in the rules about some sort of 3-yr. grace period for postseason glory. And, as per expectant fathers, Cholly shoulda pulled the kid aside and told him that the cut-off date for banging is Dec. 31, so as to avoid Oct. "due dates." Seriously ... that's piss-poor planning.
Also ... if Hammels For Halladay had happened, the Phils would have only Heidi Dobbs as a Phillie Wife Named Heidi ... which is OK, 'cuz she's miles better lookin' than the Heidi who should be giving birth at a Toronto hospital at any time now (if she's not on a Waiting Room waiting list ... it's Canada, don'tcha know ... ).
WHAT WAS THE BIG YOKEL'S BIG IDEA, TROTTING OUT EVERYBODY ON THE PITCHING STAFF -- AND NOT TROTTING CLAY CONDREY OUT THERE TO OFFER HIS UNIQUE CONDREYISTIC BRILLIANCE TO THE FRAY?
That was weird ... kinda like an open tryout out there.
"Here, Joe Blanton ... get yer ass out there. Here, Brett Myers, give 'er a whirl!"
The Blanton Bullpen Experiment (one relief appearance -- w/ the A's -- since his rookie season of '04) looked kinda shaky ... and Myers has looked wobbly ever since he had that one horrific outing vs. the Mets on that FOX Saturday game. Condrey, on the other hand (after missing almost 2 full mos. on the DL), pitched very well in his 9 apps. during the Phils' final 16 gms. (a whopping 5 IP, but 0 ER). The "Manuel Mix N' Match Program" looks real hodge-podge at best ... particularly when Myers got yanked for Antonio Bastardo, the rookie who'd pitched one inning since his five interesting starts in June (2-3/6.75).
THAT WAS INSANE. CHOLLY YANKED A VETERAN (MYERS) TO INSERT A ROOKIE FOR HIS LEFTY-VS.-LEFTY MATCHUP (SINCE HE'D ALREADY USED HAPP AND EYRE). EXPLAIN THAT.
Ya can't. But, son of a bitch ... The Big Bastard vs. The Giambino worked out in the Phils' favour when an un-HGH'ed Giambino whiffed.
IN RETROSPECT, MAYBE WE SHOULD BE THANKFUL THAT VICTORINO'S SOFT LINER LANDED GENTLY IN BARMES' GLOVE BECAUSE IF THE BALL HAD ELUDED BARMES, THERE'D'VE BEEN A PLAY AT THE PLATE -- AND PINCH-RUNNER CLIFF LEE MIGHT'VE GOTTEN RACKED UP.
Deploying Cliff Lee as a pinch-runner ... another prime example of how ineffective the Phillies' bench has been all year. Matt Stairs has been USELESS, but he -- like Cole Hamels and Brad Lidge -- are ridin' high on the fumes of 2008.
STAIRS' NUMBERS THIS YEAR WERE GRUESOME -- BUT, YOU'LL STILL FIND IDIOTS HOLDING UP DORKY, HANDMADE SIGNS WHICH READ: "In Case Of Emergency, Use Stairs."
Apparently, we're supposed to have a parade down Main Street every day for Matt Stairs just because of that one swing at Dodger Stadium on that GROOVED fastball from Broxton. FYI: Since July 1, Stairs batted .082 -- and he went ohhh-for-30 from the time he hit that homer in the wild win over the Pirates 'til his grand slam vs. the Nats. And, he got to bat cleanup on Fan Appreciation Day, going 0x4 w/ 3 Ks.
HOPEFULLY, HE'LL BE BACK NEXT YEAR TO PROVIDE VITAL "LEADERSHIP."
And to allow pitchers to "get involved" with pinch-running assignments. You'd think that if we're not going to see Clay Condrey in middle relief, we'd at least get to see him try to score from second on a soft single to RF.
On second thought, save the $$$ -- and when it's time for a pinch-hitter, keep Stairs in the dugout wearing his short-sleeve batting shirt. Seriously, didja see the way that Cliff Lee has swung the bat since arriving in Philly?
There's some real raw talent there.
TODAY WAS A REAL SETBACK AFTER YESTERDAY'S CLIFF LEE MASTERPIECE, WASN'T IT?.
It definitely woulda looked nicer with a Halladay W and a 2-0 series lead heading West.
ON TOP OF THAT, WE PROBABLY WON'T AGAIN SEE RYAN HOWARD WEARING THOSE FUNKY ADIDAS SHOES HE WAS WEARING THE PAST TWO DAYS W/ THE PHILLIE RETRO ATTIRE WHICH THEY WEAR FOR DAY GAMES.
Right now, let's just wait n' see what the team can do in sno-cone conditions ... and if Ryan Howard will be wearing any style of cleat after this weekend ...