Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

Things More Fun Than Watching the Phillies


Here are five things I’d rather do right now than watch the Phillies play professional baseball…

1. Trim my toenails.

2. Clean out the litter box.

3. Change a poopy diaper.

4. Do my taxes.

5. Organize my dress shirts by color.

That’s in no particular order, by the way.

The Phillies lost to the Padres on Sunday 6-1, and CSNPhilly’s Jim Salisbury’s game notes make one want to punch themselves in the face.

The Phillies had eight hits, but just one for extra bases. They were 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position, struck out 11 times and left 10 on base.

Jimmy Rollins doubled and singled. He had been hitless in his previous 16 at-bats before doubling in the third. Seven games into the roadtrip, Rollins is 3 for 26.

Hunter Pence went 0 for 4 and is hitless in his last 15 at-bats.

Jim Thome got the start at first base. He had a hit in three at-bats, but struck out twice. Thome is 2 for 16 with nine strikeouts on the season.

- Jim Salisbury, CSN Philly

Folks, right now, watching a Phillies game is about as much fun as a trip to the dermatologist. At 7-9, they’re in last place in the NL East, five games back of the Washington Nationals, who were rained out on Sunday. The Phillies have been held to two or fewer runs in 10 of 16 games this season (that’s per Jim Salisbury as well).

Realizing that being five games out of first place with 146 games left in the regular is no big deal, there is a larger point.

This team is absolutely brutal to watch. There is nothing fun about watching the Phillies attempt to hit a baseball. And Sunday’s game was just more of the same.

Eight hits, but only one for extra bases. No home runs. One for nine with runners in scoring position. Eleven strikeouts.

The few star players that are in the lineup aren’t hitting. And when they do, it’s usually a harmless single. They have the lowest on-base percentage in the National League. Remember Ruben Amaro’s missive after the NLDS loss to St. Louis in October? That the Phillies were going to change their approach at the plate?

So far, no good.

Normally, I love sitting down to watch a Phillies game. For me, there’s rarely anything better. But with the 2012 Phillies, even their wins are excruciating. It’s hard to watch a game right now and think of anything positive to say.

On Sunday, the Phillies were rendered feeble by San Diego starter Anthony Bass.

Anthony. Bass.

Bass walked five over six innings, but gave up only three hits. Yes, you read that correctly. The Phils got only three hits off a guy no one has ever heard of.

This isn’t Chris Carpenter or Steven Strasburg shutting the Phillies down. It’s Anthony Bass, the #5 pitcher for one of the worst teams in Major League Baseball.

And I’m not one of those people that needs to have a 9-6 game every night in order to be entertained. I love pitcher’s duels. I love a taut match-up of good pitching and not a lot of scoring.

But what has been displayed by the Phillies so far in 2012 is not the result of facing good pitching.

How many times have Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino chased a ball out of the strike zone when ahead in the count 3-1? How many times has Hunter Pence lunged at a first-pitch breaking ball? How many times has John Mayberry Jr. popped up or struck out with men in scoring position?

And frankly, barring a major trade for a big-time bat, even the return of Chase Utley and Ryan Howard doesn’t figure to make the Phillies an exciting offensive ballclub again.

We all knew the offense was going to struggle without Utley and Howard. But I’m not sure anyone thought it would be this brutal to watch.

Which is why it may be a good idea for me to do another activity, something more enjoyable, then watching the Phils next game against the Diamondbacks.

Perhaps I’ll scrub my toilet. Or maybe I’ll de-bug my car windshield. I could even read the latest Nicholas Sparks book.

Because anything would be better right now than watching the 2012 Philadelphia Phillies.

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