The Philadelphia Phillies Young Aces: The (New) Boys of Summer

14 May

Wow!  Last night’s game was a nail-biter.  I actually had to mute the tv several times during those final three innings. It was a great win but if I can’t handle an early regular season game, I don’t know what I’m going to do if  the Phillies are in the play-offs.  (Notice the intentional use of the word ‘if.’  No jinxing here!)

It has been an amazing season so far.  But for me, it hasn’t necessarily been the season I expected.  Yes, the 4 Aces have been pretty much as advertised with a flop or two thrown in along the way.  (Except for Roy Halladay who is…well, Roy Halladay.)  The ‘Big Piece’  has been incredibly productive even for him.  Watching Ryan Howard every day is like watching history in the making.  And Placido Polanco has been a hitting machine.

But what I didn’t expect were these young kids coming out of the bullpen night after night getting big outs (and shortening my nails.)  Last night, there was a stretch of 5 critical outs in the 7th and 8th innings recorded by pitchers aged 24, 25, and 23 respectively. And it’s not just last night.  Now I really try to stay away from too many stats in my posts.  There are enough blogs out there that cover that territory but bear with me here for just  a couple:

Antonio Bastardo, 25, is 2-0 with 20 strikeouts, 1 save and an ERA of 1.35 

Vance Worley, 23, is 2-0 with 15 strikeouts and an ERA of 1.13 

Michael Stutes, 24, has the highest ERA at 3.60 but he’s only pitched 5 innings.

In fact, it was Stutes last night who struck out the dangerous Dan Uggla with the bases loaded and the game tied in the 7th.

“Fun,” is what Stutes called it after the game.  “That’s what you play for right there.”

Well it may have been fun for him but my nails won’t make it to the all-star break at this rate.

And although, at 30,  he is the veteran of this group Ryan Madson, too, deserves mention. While  filling in as closer for the injured Jose Contreras who was filling in for the injured Brad Lidge, Madson‘s stats have been nothing short of spectacular:

Ryan Madson is 2-0 with 10 strikeouts.  He is a perfect 6 for 6 in save opportunities.  And his ERA?  0.56!

OK, that completes the stats for today.  That wasn’t so painful, was it?  Easier than watching last night’s game.

“It’s neat how it’s worked out,” said Stutes.  “A lot of us have gotten to come up together.  It’s helped us grow up together, too.”

It should be fun to watch them continue to “grow up” in the heat of a pennant race and hopefully more.

Wait a minute.  Did I really say fun???

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7 Responses to “The Philadelphia Phillies Young Aces: The (New) Boys of Summer”

  1. Marlyn May 14, 2011 at 2:19 pm #

    That sounds like fun. Here is the west coast version. Dodgers starters pitch a very good game hand it over to a non existent bullpen. Three runs given up in the ninth last nite, but Kershaw got the win he deserved. dodger ownership headaches continue to take the “fun” out of the game.

    • girlsbestphriend May 14, 2011 at 3:17 pm #

      I know. What a drag. I wouldn’t wish that on any fan’s team. Well, maybe the Yankees!

  2. Lea Dickler May 14, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    I TOO, HAVE NO NAILS LEFT. IT USED TO BE, IF THE OPPOSING TEAM HAD A BIG LEAD, YOU COULD TAKE A BREAK AND CHANGE THE CHANNEL OR GO TO THE BATHROOM. NOT ANY MORE!!! YOU CAN’T WALK AWAY EXCEPT FOR COMMERCIALS OR YOU MIGHT MISS THE BEST INNING OF THE GAME. OH, HERBIE WHERE WAS I WHEN YOU AND OUR BOYS WERE WATCHING THE GAME. PROBABLY COMPLAINING THAT DINNER WAS DRYING OUT ON THE STOVE. OH WELL, WHAT WAS, WAS, I KNOW HE IS WATCHING US ALL NOW.

    • girlsbestphriend May 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm #

      That’s for sure. My Dad, too. I wonder if they’re biting their nails.

  3. geetie May 14, 2011 at 2:38 pm #

    You have nail stress,I knit.During the world series year I made many long scarves.Now it’s an afghan. It’ll probably be big enough to cover the infield! Love the young ones.

    • girlsbestphriend May 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm #

      That’s a good idea. I guess I need another hobby besides Angry Birds.

  4. Hal Rosenbluth May 14, 2011 at 9:47 pm #

    Name this starter’s stats:

    2nd worst in striking out
    worst in triples
    last in caught stealing (that’s a plus)
    sixth in batting average

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