The Milwaukee Brewers are the second best team in the National League and have been almost impossible to beat in Miller Park. The Phillies started the series without Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard in the line-up marking the first time since the days of Jim Thome that one of the three has not been in the line-up.
The Phillies line-up included Wilson Valdez, Michael Martinez and Ben Francisco. These three players combined for five hits and this line-up bashed the Brewers pitching for eight runs on twelve hits.
Initially, this had the look of a game that the sleepy offense would waste a stellar start from Cole Hamels. Hamels had surrendered one run on a solo home run by Brewer’s shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt giving them a one run lead heading into the sixth inning. Chris Narveson held the Phillies to one hit through the first five innings and the first two batters in the sixth struck out. Was this a case of another soft tossing, middle of the road major league pitcher making the Phillies look silly? Does everyone remember when Jason Vargas threw a three hitter against them in June? Am I yelling? What?!? The offense scored six runs off of Narveson with two outs in the sixth. Hunter Pence hit a two run triple on a misplayed ball in center field and Ben Fransisco begged for everyone to remember him by actually hitting the ball.
This was pretty much all Cole Hamels needed. He allowed two runs and four hits in a complete game, throwing 111 pitches. He gave up the aforementioned home run to Betancourt and allowed a solo home run to Corey Hart. It looks like all that inflammation in Cole’s shoulder that made us all stamp our feet and pout is gone. During the broadcast, Tom McCarthy made mention that the Phillies have 17 complete games from their starters. The runner up has seven. Once again, this makes me want to find Omar Daal and punch him in the nuts. You would assume that watching pitching like this would illicit something other than a violent reaction toward a substandard pitcher from the recent past, but in reality, this is only an assumption on YOUR part and you should mind your own damn business. I also think that you should evict Omar Daal from your basement as soon as possible.
Pence was 2-5 with three RBI, Wilson Valdez with 2-5, John Mayberry Jr. and Ben Fransisco both went 2-4 with an RBI a piece in a 7-2 Phillies victory. The line-up sucked a little bit of air out of the claim that this is a possible playoff preview, but it is difficult to argue with the results.
Tomorrow Roy Halladay looks to give the Phillies their sixth straight win. Shaun Marcum goes for the Brewers attempting to halt their four game slide at home.