Hard to Believe, Harry
Sometimes this game is hard to figure out. A round ball can take strange bounces, lady luck can play a role, or as Richie Ashburn used to say, “Hard to Believe, Harry.”
Last night was another example. J-Roll had three errors for the entire season (86 games) and committed two in four innings. Last time he had two errors in a game was three years ago. Where? Washington, DC.
Enemy hitters were batting .309 against Livan Hernandez when the game began. Four batters into the game, the Phillies had two runs. They didn’t get another run off him the rest of the night.
Matt Stairs’ last hit was a pinch homer on July 11, 30 at-bats ago. Phillies Faithful (there were a lot of them) at Nationals Park didn’t seem fazed when he came up with the bases loaded in the top of the ninth and the DC nine leading, 8-2. “Let’s Go Phillies, Let’s Go Phillies” they chanted. Matt broke his spell with a pinch grand slam. He has five pinch homers this season, matching the club record set by Gene Freese 50 years ago.
J-Roll, who has scored only 2 runs in his previous 12 games, singled after the slam and scored when Shane slapped a double inside the third base bag. Momentum and lady luck was changing. Against the shift, Chase had a check-swing infield hit, putting runners on first and third with one out. Lady luck?
With Ryan at bat, a wild pitch hit the stone backstop and bounded right back to the catcher. Instead of a tie game, runners were still on first and third. Lady luck? Ryan then bounced into a close, game-ending double play.
During the early part of the season, we couldn’t win at home. Instead, we piled up the league’s best road record. Now, we’ve lost seven of our last 10 road games, against the Pirates, Astros and Nationals.
At home, we’ve won seven of our last nine. Next seven are at home, against the Mets and Nationals.
Yes, “Hard to Believe, Harry.”
Phillies Insider appears on twitter as barons63.