Let’s Ask the Experts

18 Jun

First of all, thanks to my special “relief” blogger yesterday.  He came in from the pen and did a great job and it is much appreciated.  And that extra time came in handy since I was able to make him his favorite treat for Father’s Day, lemon bars.  So we’re all winners.

Except, of course, for the Phillies.

And since I’m out of answers I thought I’d turn to the experts this Monday morning.  Surely 68 games into this season they can shed some light on what has gone wrong and more importantly how to fix it.

Let’s start with the “starters” since they have been one of the biggest unpleasant surprises of this season.  Expected to be  the Phillies strength, they have been anything but.  In fact, since May 18, the Phillies starting pitchers are 6-12 with a 5.70 ERA.

So, Rich Dubee, pitching coach to the stars, can you tell us in your expert opinion what has gone wrong?

“It’s a whole gamut of things.”

OK, we can all see that watching in our living rooms.  Can you be a bit more specific?

“It’s been a mishmash of all kinds of stuff.  We get distracted easily.” 

Is ‘mishmash’ a technical term?  I gotta tell you, Rich, you’re not helping me much here.  I don’t think we have one of the highest payrolls in baseball to have a team that gets “distracted easily.” But I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe you can’t describe what’s wrong but more important is your plan to fix it.  Can you shed some light on that?

“Stay in your own house… Control what you can control. You don’t have control winning games.  All you can do is execute pitches and grind and grind and grind.”

I don’t think I totally grasp the part about pitchers not having control over winning games (who does?) but I sure get the ‘stay in your own house part,’ because pretty soon, that’s surely what the fans will be doing!

But let me go to the big guy here.  It’s the manager who’s really in charge of  getting this team back on track.  Charlie will be the man with the answers.  Skip?

“We’re just going to have to come out and play better.”

Wow!  Why didn’t I think of that?  Please, tell us more.

“If we win games, that will take care of itself.”

Well, I don’t know about you but I feel a lot better with all that expertise and strategy on our side.  In fact, I’m 100% sure the Phillies won’t lose again tonight.  (Just check your schedules.)

I’ve got one more shot here.  The man who has now hit 100 home runs for three different teams.  Jim Thome has seen it all and I will give him the final word.  Jim, any thoughts?

“Baseball is a weird game… Some days, it just doesn’t work out.” 

And some seasons, too, apparently.

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