Homer is a terrible nickname for a pitcher. His God given name is David Dewitt Bailey. I suppose Grandfathers who bequeath a name upon a young child have no idea that they might grow up and become a baseball player professionally. It sort of begs the question as to what brought about the name. “He sure does look like a Homer.” This does not seem like a complimentary nickname.
Bailey has strung together a couple of quality starts since his recall from triple a, carrying a 3-1 record with a respectable 2.08 ERA. Bailey has given the Reds and their fans a glimpse as to why he was the seventh pick in the 2004 draft. Today was not positive for the Reds right hander. Homer went four innings before leaving the game with a muscle spasm in his right shoulder after batting in the top of the fourth inning. This was the worst possible day for the Reds to lose a starter early in the game, due to the marathon game from last night. Bailey was tagged for four runs and five hits in this outing and true to his appellation, he allowed a three run bomb to Raul Ibanez.
You can be absolutely certain that Cliff Lee is going to be on the mound deep into this game. After shooting his bullpen wad in last night’s game, Charlie had to lean on Lee to eat up as many innings as possible. Lee was not as sharp as he was in his last start against Texas, but he battled through eight innings, giving the Phillies exactly what they needed; innings. Lee gave up ten hits, walked one, four runs and struck out eight. He also went 2-4 with a double, a single and three RBIs. People love Cliff Lee and they love pitchers that can hit. Games like this will deepen an already torrid affair.
After last night, tied 4-4 was a scary utterance. After Jay Bruce connected for his third home run in four games, the score was tied 4-4. I think it is time to give Bruce a nickname. I was thinking like “That God Damn” Jay Bruce. He has absolutely smashed the shit out of the Phillies for the last four games. Phillies broadcaster Larry Andersen suggested knocking him down. I agree Larry. Anyway, with the score tied, the Phillies were charged with earning the win against recent minor league call up Daryl Thompson. He was terrible. He proceeded to allow a hit and two walks to load the bases. Cliff Lee crushed a ground rule double to center field, Michael Martinez hit a sac fly to give the Phillies a 7-4 lead. Cliff Lee drove in another run in the bottom of the seventh on a single and Michael Martinez singled in another run to pad the lead to 9-4. It does not look like Thompson’s stay in the big leagues will be for very long. He walked five, gave up five runs, six hits in his three innings of work.
CHASE UTLEY HIT A HOME RUN! Utley capped the scoring with a solo home run off of Jose Arredondo. Jose Contreras pitched a perfect ninth in his first appearance off the disabled list. He was also the only fresh arm in the bullpen. Big truck is a bad ass. 10-4 in nine innings, eight innings from the starter, a couple of home runs (one from the second baseman) and a perfect inning from a returning reliever. All in all a pretty good afternoon at the ballpark and a nice series win for the Phils.
The Phillies travel to New York to take on Chris Capuano and the Mets. Roy Oswalt takes the hill for the Phils as the Metropolitans welcome back Angel Pagan from the disabled list.
If you ever bestow a nickname on a child, stay away from Homer, you never know if they will become a major league pitcher. I will be nicknaming all my children “The Destroyer.”