Jennifer D. Wade Journal

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Blog posts August 2011

Gettin' Hot!

I meant to post this yesterday, but couldn't onacounna not having the Internet at home. The guys who are putting the vinyl siding on my house accidentally broke off the phone wire! They managed to get it hooked up properly again, but my DSL service didn't return with the dial tone. I ended up having to unplug the modem, wait 20 seconds (Verizon's automated voice was kind enough to tell me when time was up), then reboot. That seems to have done the trick. So, on we go ...

This weekend, the Phillies take their best record in baseball to the west coast for a rematch with the World Series champion San Francisco Giants. About a week ago, the Giants came east and took two of three from the Phils. Since then, the Phillies have won six straight, sweeping both the Pirates and the Rockies. The Giants, meanwhile, got swept by the Reds then lost two more games before finally getting a win.

The Phillies team headed to SF is different from the one that played the Giants such a short time ago. The Phillies have now acquired OF Hunter Pence, and pitchers Brad Lidge and Roy Oswalt are finally off the DL and back with the big club. On paper, their additions make the Phillies a stronger, more solid team. Oswalt, is scheduled to start Friday, I think. Lidge has been in a couple of games since his return and got his first save of the season last night. He's looked OK so far.

Another difference is that the Phillies, at least for the moment, have finally started to hit. Ryan Howard has hit a bunch of home runs in the past few games, Ibanez is hitting well for the time being, and Utley, Rollins and Victorino are getting timely hits. Hunter Pence has also done OK since joining the team. Give this pitching staff more than three runs a game and your odds of a win are excellent.

I think what has struck me most about this recent streak is that, as best I can remember, it's the first time all season that the Phillies have been legitimately "hot." Yes, I know they have the most wins in baseball right now, but they've done it by winning series on a consistent basis. So, their general pattern has been win 2, lose 1, win 1, lose 1, win 2, lose 3, win 2 and so on. There hasn't been a particularly long winning streak or a long losing streak all season.

The Phillies already have an 8 game lead over the Braves in the NL East. And now, finally, they're hot.  

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