Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mackanin walks hottest hitter in baseball, and it pays off

The Phils gave a few passes to first base out to Harper last night, and it seemed to work 

The Phillies beat the Nationals 4-3 on Monday night, they were 2-12 with RISP, so they squandered a lot more opportunities to make this a much higher score against one of the better pitchers in the NL, Max Scherzer. The Phils constantly kept Scherzer in trouble, but they didn't blow the lid off of this game when they should have.

Kudos to Pete Mackanin, he finally intentionally walked the hottest hitter in baseball of late, Bryce Harper. Taking the bat out of Harper's hand was an essential part in the victory last night, even though the Phillies did have to pitch to him with runners on base later in the game. Harper was intentionally walked twice, walked another time, but still managed to get an RBI in an at bat that the Phils did pitch to him.

Harper demoralized the Phillies in front of the hometown fans at Citizens Bank Park during a recent series there, but Mackanin didn't intentionally walk him then. A few other Nationals batters were also on fire in that series in Philly as well.

Winning (and losing for that matter) is a team sport in baseball. When things are going well, you can point to a lot of areas in which the team as a whole was doing well. Pitching and hitting at the right time, and some heroics thrown in from time to time on certain plays.

The Phillies have been showing some of those heroics lately. The team is now at 10-10 on the year, and winning against teams like the Nats and the Mets show them that maybe they aren't really that bad. We have a few days left in April now, and it is sure better to have 10 wins this far into the season than not. 

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