yesterday's game, here is the good and the bad from Tuesday night's win:
1. Eaton's on a roll! Meet your new ace of the Phillies, Adam Eaton. Coming off his first win of the season last week against the Rockies, Eaton put forth his second straight dominating effort. Eaton went 6 and 2/3rds innings, gave up only 3 hits and 1 run, and struck out 5 batters to earn his second straight victory. Eaton was in total control all night, making very few bad pitches, except for the one Edwin Encarnacion planted in the left field seats. Eaton has fared remarkably well lately and has done enough to tighten his grip on his spot in the rotation. It's a good thing, too, since there isn't really anyone else the Phillies could turn to right now, given how far Kris Benson seems to be from being ready.
2. Burrell supplies the offense The Phils offense was held off the scoreboard for most of the night despite getting 9 hits off Reds ace Aaron Harang. Pat Burrell had the big hit on the night, a two-run blast in the 6th inning that proved to be the game winner:
With 6 hits in his last 4 games, Burrell appears to be heating up again after going through a rough stretch for most of May. It seems like only one of Burrell or Ryan Howard can be hot at once, imagine what this line-up would look like if both were able to get going at the same time.
3. The bullpen holds another lead If Chase Utley is the team MVP then the bullpen has to be a close second. Even though they gave up a run in tonight's game, the trio of J.C. Romero, Tom Gordon and Brad Lidge continue to hold leads and shut down the opposition. Throw Chad Durbin into the mix and I have never been as confident with a 1 run lead in the late innings as I am right now. Most of the credit has to go to Pat Gillick for assembling this group; it appears that he has finally found the right mix for the late innings.
1. Utley goes homerless Chase Utley failed in his attempt to break the Phillie record of consecutive games with a homer when all he did was go 2 for 3 with a double, an RBI and 1 run scored. Utley should be ashamed that he didn't hit a homer and was only able to muster a broken bat RBI single:
Obviously, Utley is still the man. He doesn't even need his bats to stay together to get hits.
2. Howard keeps missing and missing Like I said before, this team will really take off (as if it hasn't already) when Pat Burrell and Ryan Howard get hot at the same time. Howard went 0 for 4 tonight, striking out 2 more times. He also left 7 runners stranded on base. His average has now dipped down to .205. Howard has gone back into a mini-funk after two weeks of solid hitting. He'll bounce back.
3. Manuel benches Coste One day after Chris Coste hits his 6th homer of the season, Carlos Ruiz gets the start behind the plate tonight and goes 0 for 4. Hey, Charlie, play the hot bat! Keep Coste in the line-up! Manuel is known for riding the hot bat so why wasn't Coste in there tonight? Count on him to be penciled in tomorrow.