"Yeah. That one."

Ha, Ha… Damn: Roy Oswalt’s Phillies Debut


DIRECTIONS: 1. Be an idiot 2. Watch Roy Oswalt have a bad game 3. HIT BUTTON

I’m as debilitatingly delusional, sweaty, and paranoid as the next crack addict, but even I wasn’t losing my cool last night, and not just because the bartender was passing out free “Roy-Shots” for the last 15 minutes of Phillies Pregame Live.  I don’t know, I guess I’ve seen enough guys in Phillies uniforms throw absolute garbage as a starting pitcher in my life that it doesn’t slap me as hard across the face.

The context of the start is clearly what is up for debate/cowardly squealing.  Roy Oswalt is our third ace, he’s here to solidify the rotation, give it some depth, make it worthy of a playoff run, turn water into alcohol, clean up the streets of Philadelphia, charm all of the fans, and run a successful mayoral campaign by 2014.

Well, he’s here, and he hasn’t done all that instantly, so what the hell?  This deal was clearly a bust.  “I hope Ruben kept the receipt,” said about 30 different people on Phillies message boards.  Ha, ha.  Genius.

No, not really.  Why is so much emphasis being put on the fact that Oswalt was cursing like a demon out there?

“Players curse more than you can imagine.  Obviously, the networks try to hide it, but some words slip through.”  –Zack Hample, Watching Baseball Smarter

Not that you should even need a book to tell you that, baseball fan.  I might also point out we are in Philadelphia, where vulgarities will sometimes flow out of the faucets instead of tap water.  I just want to make the coffee and instead I’m getting an earful of c-bombs.

Its an emotional game and the dude rode into town with a ton of pressure on his shoulders–strange, when you consider he’s on a rotation with two other bonified aces.  I mean, I get it… showing that much emotion on the mound probably isn’t helping, I just don’t see at all why that’s what some of us are focusing on.  The camera cuts to Greg Dobbs picking his butt or Jayson Werth eyeing the stands for which child he was going to murder after the game instead of Oswalt and we don’t even know it happened.

My point is, it’s one game.  There were plenty of great Oswalt starts behind last night, and there will be plenty more after it.  Sure, its easy to abandon ship without putting up much of a fight because then you get to say “I TOLD YOU SO” if Oswalt is a bust.  But that’s so cowardly I don’t know how you read that last sentence without putting an axe through your computer.

Shame on you.

So, shut up.  Wrap yourself in your bitter cloak and whisper dark nothings in the silence of your existence if you must, but don’t try to drag Roy-O and the rest of the 2.5 GB hopeful brigade into your festering pit of despair.

Two more starts like that, though, and I’ll be right down there with you.  What else are we going to do?  Keep complaining about something way obvious yet out of our control for months and months after the fact?  Come on. That’s not journalism at all.

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Tags: Astros Greg Dobbs Jayson Werth Nationals Phillies Roy Oswalt

  • http://bureaucratist.blogspot.com bureaucratist

    Here’s why: Since the Tim Wakefield start, it’s been an endless parade of: it’s just a slump; he’s a better player than this; the team is not as bad as it looks; it’s only a matter of time before they put together a run; etc. etc. ad nauseam. And, until this last little run, it hasn’t happened. Then, on a night when the Phillies should have been absolutely pumped with the arrival of Oswalt, they go out appearing as though they do not have any interest in being on a baseball field. It’s not just that Roy pitched poorly (I personally like him more for the swear words); it’s that tomorrow is August, Jimmy Rollins is a selfish prick, Ryan Howard can’t put wood to ball, Werth is more slump than star, Utley cares more about his reputation for toughness than going on the disabled list to help the team, Cole Hamels is a baby, the bullpen is a sieve, Charlie Manuel is clueless (wouldn’t have been a good idea to hold Oswalt’s first start back until today?), and no one on the field ever gives any indication that they remember what winning baseball looks like. Throw Oswalt crapulence last night on top of all that … and that’s why people (like me) are panicking.

  • http://thatballsouttahere.com Justin

    Ryan’s been the only one hitting the ball all season. For him to be flirting with .300 with an extended period of time is unheard of. I don’t think Chase Utley’s ever counted his reputation into a decision. Charlie’s reliance on his gut instincts will sometimes make him appear foolish.

    The rest of that is accurate to different degrees.

  • http://bureaucratist.blogspot.com bureaucratist

    I was incredibly angry when I wrote that post, obviously. You are right about Howard. Utley … I’m not so sure. If he wasn’t hurt during the long slump preceding the hand injury, then he just sucks. He is in his 30s; if that’s the case, it’s not unreasonable to believe that he’s now well into the downside of his career. Better that he was hurt that whole time and not tell anyone, which is what I was hoping when I wrote that. But Manuel’s devotion to Lidge? I no longer believe that can be defended, nor can the front office’s devotion to landing a starter without so much as a thought about the bullpen. The Yankees gave up virtually nothing for Wood, and Cleveland is paying most of his salary. No similar move was available for the Phils? Look at WS winners the last twenty years–by far the most prominent common thread is a great bullpen. It was true for the Phils in ’08. It is not true now. The inference is clear, and fills me with rage before it makes me sad.