Phils fall in all too familiar fashion
So, I have to say, as someone who watched the Phillies all year, this ending didn't actuall surprise me. It had the same mistakes being repeated that had happened all year. Let's look:
Inconsistent offense: Some people blamed the lack of a healthy lineup for the full season as the reason the offense struggled but the fact of the matter is that offense was struggling even when all of the players were in the lineup. Here is something to consider: the players got old and the window has closed. Jayson Werth is gone. He's going to be a Red Sox or Angels player in a matter of weeks. Rollins is 31 and wasn't healthy the whole year. Ryan Howard is 30 and had his least amount of RBI's since 2005 when he only played 88 games. Raul is 38 and he looks 50. He struggled for most of the year and even in spring training most people saw his slow bat speed as a cause for concern. He had his lowest amount of homers and RBI's since 2004. Carlos Ruiz is 31 and, although he had a career year at the plate, he also played his most games in his career this year, 4 more than 2008. Chase Utley is 31 and his hard playing style looks to have caught up with him. He played his least amount of games since 2004 and hit HALF the home runs he hit last season. Victorino, although only 29 and hitting 4 more homers than ever before, also experienced a career low in batting average and on base percentage, necessaties for a top of the lineup guy. I'm sorry, but if you CAN'T SCORE FOR 7 INNINGS OFF OF A TEAMS BULLPEN, you don't deserve to win.
Ryan Howard coming up small: I'll tell you what, I'm not the least bit surprised he struck out to end our season. You know why? He's struck 1,035 times in 837 games. Thats an average of 1.2 per game. This is not worth 125 million. And you know whats worse? The first thing they teach you in little league is that if its close with 2 strikes...SWING THE FUCKING BAT. I hope you are ashamed of yourself. Wilson isn't even a leftie who you stuggle so mightily to hit.
Victorino's error on the basepaths: I love Shane. I think he has a ton of talent and speed to burn. But you know what? He has no idea how to play baseball. Why are you running on contact with one out in the 8th? That ball is down the line. If its a hit, you score easily. He is always stupid on the bases and it cost us at the worst possible time.
Charlie veering from what works: Ryan Madson is one of the best postseason weapons the Phils have ever had. But ask ANY fan and he'll tell you the same thing. Use the guy in the 8th, for ONE INNING, b/c thats all he's good for. We talked about it that as soon as Madson went out for a second inning when he's only used to giving it all he's got for one, he was done. And he gave up a solo home run to crappy Juan Uribe.
I can't really consider this season a success since the Phils seem to be going backwards. Oswalt gave you 6 innings of 2 run ball. Work with it. There were some great highlights like the best record in that NL and Halladay's 2 gems. But really, does anyone are about them tonight?
I hope this cheers you up...it doesn't cheer me up: