The Phillies were handcuffed by Rockies’ starter Jhoulys Chacin to the tune of one earned run through seven innings, all the while “Dinger” the dinosaur was rubbing salt in the collective wounds of all Philadelphia fans. As Phillies hitters failed to hit the rookie Venezuelan Dinger’s affronts became more overt with him strutting around in anticipation of an eventual victory over the Phillies.
The Phillies were down 3-1 after Cole Hamels allowed a two run home run to Seth Smith in the second inning and Michael Stutes allowed a solo blast to Chris Iannetta in the seventh. Hamels certainly pitched well enough to win the game, allowing the aforementioned home run, but escaping from a one out bases loaded jam in the bottom of the fifth by striking out Mark Ellis and Troy Tulowitski to end the threat. All the while that accursed dinosaur was there, staring, inducing rage by his very presence.
After generating very little off of Chacin and missing out on an opportunity against Rafael Betancourt in the eighth inning, the Rockies turned to their closer Hudson Street to, go figure, close the game. Dinger was a constant presence on the television broadcast, positioning himself behind home plate nary giving us respite from his visage. Street recorded two outs before surrendering a double to Carlos Ruiz bringing pinch hitter John Mayberry Jr. to the plate. Dinger was giving celebratory high fives to those willing to look him in the eye. Much has been made of Mayberry’s inability to hit breaking balls, a fact certainly not lost on major league scouts. This meant Street fed Mayberry a steady diet of breaking balls. Mayberry fouled away anything close and worked the count full before delivering a game tying two run home run. Street threw him a slider that didn’t slide and Mayberry did not miss it.
Antonio Bastardo worked a scoreless ninth giving Shane Victorino to opportunity to hit a game winning home run in the top of the tenth inning. With the big left handed bats looming behind him, Rockies manager Jim Tracy elected to use left hander Rex Brothers. Victorino has better power right handed (ask C.C. Sabathia) and he proved it by winning the game and humiliating Dinger. Ryan Madson worked the bottom of the inning and earned his nineteenth save in twenty chances.
I hate you Dinger. We have the Phanatic. He may have devolved into a feral menace, devouring unsuspecting vermin and narrowly avoiding insanity, but we love him. He is the best mascot in baseball. Everyone hates Dinger.
Next up, Kyle Kendrick versus Aaron Cook. Dinger will be there, mocking us.