Howard on the cover of SI, hopefully some home runs are still to come in the Series
Last night's Game 2 had all the ingredients for a possible great night for the Phillies. The Phils won Game 1 in New York, and now they had a tremendous opportunity to take a commanding lead in the series being up 2-0. They could not get it going offensively though, and opposing pitcher, AJ Burnett, looked like he had the best stuff of the postseason in the Yankees 3-1 win. Pedro Martinez pitched a good game for the Phillies, he did give up two homeruns and that was the difference in the game, as the Phillies couldn't answer with anything back.
On Philly sports radio this morning, the talk was about whether or not Pedro should have been left in, I don't think that's even an issue. Pedro did fine, it was the Phillies offense that couldn't get anywhere against Burnett that made the difference. The bats need to become involved again for the Phillies or they will not be successful against this Yankee team who themselves haven't even displayed all of thier offensive power. Game 3 is a pivitol game, the series in effect is down to a best of 5 now and the Phillies have 3 of the five games possible at home.
Cole Hamels is pitching Game 3, the whispering about which Cole will show up on sports radio stations in Philly but I think the talk should center not about Cole, but about how the offense needs to support anyone who is pitching for the Phillies. Here's the Phillies offense so far in the series:
Ryan Howard - 2 for 9
Raul Ibanez - 3 for 8
Shane Victorino - 2 for 8
Chase Utley - 2 for 7
Jimmy Rollins - 2 for 6
Jason Werth - 2 for 6
The Phillies left 6 runners on base in Game 2 and they only managed one run, they'll have to do much better than this in Game 3. If the problem is offense, the team will have to sacrifice bunt to move runners or whatever they have to do to move them and score them. That is one area where Charlie Manuel doesn't exert his managerial moves too much. He's going to have to start if the offense is still puttering around. Except for Chase Utley's two homeruns in game 1, the offense has been flat.
Game 3 is on Halloween night, hopefully it will be a treat for the Phillies! This is a side note of Game 2 but it was reported that a dozen or so baseball writers were locked in a stairwell for up to 15 minutes so George Steinbrenner could leave undisturbed. This is bizarre, certainly no way to treat people in this day and age. Steinbrenner may own the Yankees but he isn't living god or anything, isn't this like false imprisonment or something for these writers?