Results tagged ‘ Brewers ’

More Wins, More Complete Games … and More

Three important numbers for you (if the math is correct):

  • Magic number is 4 to clinch a playoff berth.
  • Magic number is 11 to clinch the National League East.
  • Magic number is 11 to clinch the best record in the National League.

Cole Hamels threw his third complete game of the season in last night’s 7-2 victory over Milwaukee. It was the Phillies’ 17th complete game of the season. It is the most in the majors since the Orioles threw 17 complete games in 1999.

It turns out this series between the Phillies and Brewers is relatively historic. Elias Sports Bureau said it is the first four-game series between NL teams leading their respective divisions by at least eight games since Cincinnati won 3 of 4 from the Phillies at Riverfront Stadium in the final week of August 1976.

The Reds swept the Phillies in the best-of-five NLCS six weeks later.

Jimmy Rollins got a kick out of the fact last night was the first meaningful game since Sept. 12, 2004, the Phillies were without Rollins, Chase Utley or Ryan Howard in the lineup. (Stat courtesy of Philled In’s David Hale.) We say meaningful because none of them were in the lineup in the final games of the 2008 and 2009 seasons, but those games were meaningless because the Phillies had clinched the division at that point.

“We’ve always had somebody in the lineup,” Rollins said. “Actually, knowing that before the game, I was like, ‘Wow, what is going to happen tonight, knowing that none of the regulars that you normally see aren’t in there?’ But guys are getting a chance to play, which down the road is going to be very big. It was fun. They did a heck of a job.”

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Postseason Preview Week

I still don’t understand why Joe West reviewed a non-home run call on instant replay, especially when Charlie Manuel never asked him to review it. (West said Manuel did, but Manuel did not speak with West until after he reviewed the play so that seems impossible — unless telepathy was involved.) I’ve got to think something will happen to West, some sort of disciplinary action, although I doubt we’ll hear about it. But I will bet the final score stands because MLB does not have a history of overturning rulings in protested games.

I also don’t understand why fans insist on reaching onto the field of play to catch baseballs. I know, it’s instinct, yadda, yadda, yadda. I say have some self awareness. Hey, I’m in the first or second row, if a ball comes my way I’m not going to do anything that might make me the next Steve Bartman or cost my team a victory. (The fans offer their sides of the story here. “Get over it,” one said.)

But, as Cliff Lee would say, whatever.

That’s yesterday.

Today the Phillies begin a stretch of seven consecutive games against two teams they could face in the postseason. They open a three-game series tonight against the Braves at Citizens Bank Park before flying to Milwaukee to play the Brewers in a four-game series at Miller Park. If the postseason started today the Phillies would be playing Arizona in the NLDS, while Atlanta would be playing Milwaukee. If those seeds held in the first round the Phillies would be playing either Atlanta or Milwaukee for the NL pennant.

So there’s certainly plenty of intrigue this week.

To recap:

  • Joe West: Huh?
  • Interferring fans: Really, dude?
  • This week’s games: Oooooh.

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