9 0 7 8 0
8 0 4 10 2
7 2 3 7 2
7 0 3 7 3
31 2 17 32 7
I call it August. The SABR nerds might call it a blind date, but there’s nothing I can do about that.
Those are (in order) the innings pitched, earned runs, hits, strikeouts, and walks for Cliff Lee’s four starts in August. They’re good for a 0.58 ERA and 0.77 WHIP. Oh my.
Perhaps you’re noting a trend: Lee is streaky- he has been his whole career. He had a rocky April, average May, dominant June, average July, and dominant August. If the last four months are any indication, we’re due for a pedestrian September followed be a world-rocking October. Sign me up.
As if his exploits on the mound weren’t enough, Charlie Manuel left Lee in to bat in the seventh, before taking him out. He almost hit an opposite field home run…
The Phillies won, 10-0. It was the newly-named Proud Pony game, a title coined by reader Jenny in the comments: Lee dominates on the mound, strokes at the plate, and dazzles in the field. One might imagine a pony galloping in front of a myriad on-lookers, proudly displaying his form and wiggling his broad little shoulders.
Lee talked about the outing after the game. He is completely unfazed by silly beat reporter questions: [via David Hale]
Whatever. He did, however, talk about his command being off last night. He threw only 12 four-seam fastballs (5 for strikes), according to Brooks Baseball. That’s compared to the 24 (15 strikes) he threw in his last start. Still, he relied on his two-seamer and cutter (66 pitches) and threw seven shutout innings. Steed.
Not to be outdone, the Phillies patchwork offense took it to the Metropolitans. Hunter Pence scored four runs, hitting a monster home run (here) in the process. John Mayberry Jr. continues to not be an everyday player, he just crushes a lot (home run video here). He’s like an enhanced version of 2009 Ben Francisco: a left fielder who brings with him a surprisingly reliable and somewhat powerful right-handed bat to the plate. He’s more toolsy than Francisco, so while Mayberry might not get exposed as an everyday player the way Ben Fran did, it's Ibanez’s job to lose… for now.
Ricky Bo talked about Guchis after the game. Check at Barkann’s face at the 19 second mark:[thanks to Tom, Matt, and Andrew for the video grabs]
Finally, another idiot fan waving a red fist behind the Phillies’ dugout: