HAPPY LABOR DAY, NATION!
Hope you’re having a fantastic BBQing day with friends and family. The perfect scenario for today is no rain, grill hot, beers cold, Phils on the radio. That might be the most fantastic situation possible, so I hope you achieve something close to that today.
On the field, it’s a big freakin’ series. There aren’t any real playoff implications, but if the Phillies can take 2 of 3 here, it’ll give everyone associated with red pinstripes a great feeling, and will push the Phillies even farther ahead in the standings.
Right now, the Phillies lead the Braves by 7.5 games in the division. They hold a 6.5 game lead in the NL over the surging Brewers – the Phillies will be in Milwaukee for four games later this week. What an incredible week of baseball ahead…
Cliff Lee gets the ball and who, at this point, would you rather have in this situation? Lately, he’s been Cy Young worthy, in much the same fashion as he was in June. His August numbers were obnoxious, almost video game-like again. He’s going for his seventh straight win; his last loss was July 25. Lee is one of those zones we’ve become accustomed to. No sense in stopping now, and not for a below-average Braves offense, either.
Derek Lowe gets the ball for Atlanta and has not had a very strong season to this point. We’ve seen Lowe kill the Phils at times with that deadly sinker, but he appears to have lost confidence. His August was an odd one; he gave up eight runs in a start, five runs in another, but recently has been better, allowing just three earned over his last 13 innings. Which Derek Lowe will we get?
The weather is going to play a factor in this series, who woulda thought!? The remnants of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Lee are making their way from the Gulf Coast to the Philadelphia area, and could be here in time for Tuesday’s game. It looks like it’ll get here – and dump 2-6 inches of rain in the process – but not until Wednesday. The Phillies can ill afford more makeup games. Hell, they might end up playing like 159 games this year at this pace.
Lineup: Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Pence RF, Mayberry LF, Ruiz C, Martinez SS, Halladay P
Sam Adams Summer Ale is another of their ridiculously good brews. This summer seasonal uses malted wheat, lemon peel and Grains of Paradise, a rare pepper from Africa first used as a brewing spice in the 13th century, to create a crisp taste, spicy flavor and medium body. It tickles the tongue. And since summer isn’t over juuuust yet, ed it on a great note with this excellent beverage. Tomorrow, we’ll have to look ahead to the Octoberfest beers. But for one more day, we live in summer. And what a summer it has been! -by Pat