Bench Comes Through
Over the course of the long marathon called a baseball season, it takes contributions from all 25 players and a minor league system. Those on the bench are needed.
Take Wednesday night’s Phillies win. Five of the eight RBI came from John Jr., Wilson, Brian and Ben. Brian has been behind the plate 26 times and the Phillies have won 23, including his last 15 starts.
Cliff was a pillar again, his fourth straight win during which he has a 1.71 ERA. At the start of the season, everyone knew he, Doc, Roy-O and Joe were the aces.
One of seven pitchers to come up during the season from Lehigh Valley was Vance, who is on the mound in the series finale Thursday. No telling where the Phillies would be without him.
The seventh LV hurler is Michael Schwimer, a 6-foot-8 right-handed reliever, who was called up Wednesday. The Phillies head for Washington, DC, after Thursday’s game aboard an Amtrak charter train. Michael grew up in Alexandria, VA, so the weekend series will be a homecoming for him. He’ll probably need a lot of tickets.
Down On The Farm
Lehigh Valley won, 3-1, over Rochester behind a solid start by LH Ryan Edell (5-4), 1 run, 5 hits, 7 innings. OF Brandon Moss hit his 21st home run. He’s driven in 6 runs in 3 games this week. LH Joe Savery picked up his 1st save. IronPigs are in second, 1 game out . . . Reading lost twice to Portland, 5-4 and 5-3. 3B Carlos Rivero homered in each game and has gone deep in 3 straight games (#12-13-14) . . . Clearwater was pasted by Dunedin, 10-1. RH Trevor May (9-7) fanned 11 in 6 innings while taking the loss . . . Lakewood edged Delmarva, 5-4; 1B Jim Murphy had 2 RBI, 73 for the season . . . Williamsport was a 3-1 winner over Tri-City; 3B Harold Martinez hit his 2nd home run, LH Lino Martinez improved to 6-2; CF Kyrell Hudson was 3-3 with his 20th stolen base . . . Gulf Coast League Phillies were rained out for the 6th time in the last 11 days.
“What changes would you like to see in baseball” was a question posed to Phillies Alumni. Here’s another view:
George Culver, (RHP, 1973-74; minor league pitching instructor, manager, pitching coordinator, 1981-98)
“Would like to see the DH eliminated, it’s taken the athlete out of pitchers. Most of your great old pitchers from the 50’s and 60’s and back could swing the bat and bunt. Bob Gibson would even steal a base on you. Instant replay would be a good idea as long as it doesn’t slow the game down. Definitely for foul balls and home runs the fans interfere with. More wildcard teams would extend the season too long and some undeserving team could get lucky and win. The teams that play the best over the long haul deserve it.”