There is indeed something special about these Washington Nationals. They remind me a lot of the Phillies when they finally gave into the call for the youngsters. The Phillies fought back all night but ultimately fell short 4-3 in the 11th inning.
Strasburg’ed – Hunter Pence homered off Stephen Strasburg in the fourth inning to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead. It was the first home run given up by Strasburg since August 2010. Carlos Ruiz, who has been on an absolute tear, also took the righty deep in the fifth inning. Ruiz’s fifth home run of the year gave the Phillies a 3-1 lead.
KK – Kyle Kendrick, making another start in place of injured Cliff Lee, pitched very efficiently for five innings of work. He allowed only one run on seven hits and struck out two. The radar gun had him topping our at 94 tonight. But then again it says Nats reliever Henry Rodriguez was hitting triple digits, so who knows.
Bully-pen – By no means do I think managing a baseball team is easy, especially when the big guy Charlie Manuel gets tossed in the first, but it boggles my mind that Jonathan Papelbon wasn’t brought in for six outs to close this game out.
Small Ball No More – The Phillies tried reliving their glory days tonight by relying on the long ball. As you can see, it did not work. Two of their six hits left the yard but only accounted for three runs. On a positive noted, Ruiz has 13 hits in his last six ball games. He is now hitting over .330 for the season.
Trading Places – The Phillies and Nationals have swapped roles thus far in the season with Washington sitting atop the NL East and the Phils bringing up the rear just surviving enough to stay ahead of the LOLMets.
Take Back the Park – Philly fans will be able to invade the Nation’s capital for two more days. Hopefully the Phillies can win out before heading back to Philadelphia.