Phirst Place Phills

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

What a night for Phillies fans! Coming off the four game sweep of the Brewers, putting the Phillies in a tie for the Wild Card lead in the National League, here is what happened last night...

  • Ryan Howard blasts a home run to the opposite field to put the Phillies on top of the Braves for good in a wild game. Phillies win.
  • The Brewers fight back against the Cubs with the aide of two Prince Fielder homeruns, but lose 5-4, leaving two men on base in the ninth (one at third) with Fielder at the plate. Fielder struck out looking.
Meanwhile, in the nation's capital...

The Mets were spooked by the Washington Nationals for the second straight night, losing to Washington 1-0.

The Phillies now control their own playoff destiny with essentially a one game buffer. The lead in the NL East is now 1/2 game on the Mets, and the buffer over the Brewers is one game should the Phillies fall back into the Wild Card slot.

Tonight the Phillies will put rookie J.A. Happ on the mound, replacing Kyle Kendrick who has been struggling mightily. The Phillies offense will have to get on track early and give Happ some confidence. I can't imagine what it must be like to be a rookie with limited major league experience, being asked to pitch in place of one of the starters who's been there all year in such a tight playoff race. Happ pitched real well in his two starts earlier this year, so we know he can handle it.

Today I remain confident that the Phillies will make the playoffs. I want the NL East, but I'll take the Wild Card if needed. What I would love to see would be the Houston Astros coming from 3 games back to take the Wild Card and the Phillies take the division. That would be fun.

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