This Man Is Pumped
Or maybe Cinco Ocho said that.
Well, we know one of them picked up their National League-leading 12th save in tonight’s 6-4 victory over the Red Sox. Papelbon tried to downplay the fact he faced and beat his former team for the first time. Asked if the night felt any differently, he said, “There was a little extra buzz in the ballpark tonight, a weekend game. But other than that, no.” Asked later if he planned to send any text messages to his former teammates, he said, “No. We’ve got to win the series.”
Papelbon is a focused man, but that could be said for the entire team. The Phillies are 7-1 since Charlie Manuel held a team meeting May 9. The offense is averaging 5.4 runs per game in that stretch. They are hitting .286/.364/.473. The pitching staff has a 2.84 ERA. Starters have a 2.41 ERA, while relievers have a 4.24 ERA (remove Jake Diekman‘s effort Thursday in Chicago and the bullpen has a 2.20 ERA).
So the meeting made a difference, Pap?
“Of course. Shoot, yeah,” he said. “He’s the skipper. He runs the ship. You tell me. We started winning games after that didn’t we? … I think the facts speaks for themselves.”
Papelbon has three saves in that stretch. He hadn’t pitched with a save opportunity before that since May 1.
“If I’m in the game, we’re playing a good game probably,” he said. “We’ve been on a good little streak here, and we’ve got to keep this train rolling. Like I said earlier in the season when we were struggling, we’ve got the capability to put 10 wins on the board real quick. We’ve got to keep staying at the task at hand.”
Since Manuel’s meeting:
- Carlos Ruiz: .560 (14-for-25) with one double, two homers, 10 RBIs, .621 OBP and .840 SLG.
- Placido Polanco: .316 (6-for-19) with two doubles, one homer, two RBIs, .350 OPB and .579 SLG.
- Freddy Galvis: .300 (9-for-30) with four doubles, one homer, six RBIs, .364 OPB and .533 SLG.
- Juan Pierre: .292 (7-for-24) with two doubles, one RBI, .292 OBP and .375 SLG.
- John Mayberry Jr.: .269 (7-for-26) with three doubles, one homer, four RBIs, .345 OBP and .500 SLG.
- Hunter Pence: .258 (8-for-31) with one double, three homers, five RBIs, .361 OBP and .581 SLG.
- Shane Victorino: .226 (7-for-31) with one double, one triple, two RBIs, .333 OBP and .323 SLG.
- Jimmy Rollins: .219 (7-for-32) with one double, one homer, one RBI, .342 OBP and .344 SLG.
- Ty Wigginton: .111 (2-for-18) with three RBIs, .320 OBP and .111 SLG.
Jim Salisbury and I co-authored the book The Rotation, which is now available. Check it out here! Here are our upcoming book signings:
- June 2: Citizens Bank Park, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.
- June 16: Barnes & Noble, Wilmington, Del, 2 p.m.