Though the Phillies opened the season with three games against the fearsome St. Louis Cardinals, I don’t think too many people thought they would look this bad in the first week. Certainly, when the club broke camp with a 19-win spring, optimism was reasonably high and the Phillies were something of a trendy pick to make it to the playoffs.
Heck, even this guy was suckered into the positive vibes coming from Clearwater.
But after the 1-5 opening week and a three-game series in Atlanta beginning tomorrow, it might be a good idea to re-evaluate those preseason picks.
He was on to something.
Nevertheless, it isn’t time to panic, Phillies fans. Bobby Abreu is starting to swing the bat, and it seems as if the starters – excluding Gavin Floyd – are on the right path. Besides, after the three games against the Braves, the schedule eases up a bit. Starting next Friday, the Phillies play 18 of their next 28 at home against the likes of Colorado, Washington, Florida, and Pittsburgh.
Making his way Everyone in Chicago, it seemed, was in love with Aaron Rowand. With a game that is all grit and intensity, including the ability to run gap to gap as well as any centerfielder in baseball, it was only a matter of time until he owned Philadelphia, they said.
But so far it appears as if Rowand has some work to do in order to win over the fans. No, it’s not as if Rowand has at the bottom of the trough with David Bell and Mike Lieberthal, or even the everyday, run-of-the-mill player, for that matter. But though Rowand has been an above-average fielder (the sun-blinded error, notwithstanding), he hasn’t exactly been inspiring, either.
The reason for that was the 0-for-13 skid and the two hits he collected in his first 18 plate appearances with five strikeouts before Rowand picked up a pair of clutch singles on Sunday. What’s more, Rowand doesn’t seem like the best fit for the No. 2 spot in the order where he started in four of the last five games, especially since he has averaged 105 strikeouts and just 31 walks over the past two seasons.
Regardless, based on the emotional reception Rowand heard from the fans at the ballpark formerly known as Comiskey when he went to pick up his World Series ring last week, it looks like there is something about the guy. Maybe the fans need a few more hits to go with the mellifluous way in which he covers the outfield.
Then again, it’s only been a week… maybe I ought to lighten up?
Sitting still Earlier I wrote that the Schuylkill Expressway was the worst stretch of pavement in the United States. Upon reflection on my drive to the ballpark this weekend I have to admit that the statement is wrong and I should amend it.
The Schuylkill is not the worst road in America… it’s the worst expanse of concrete in the world.
Please note the correction.