So, an ad ran in the Inquirer today congratulating the Phillies on their second straight World Series victory. An embarrassing error for the paper, but in the end, perhaps this was the last day that this ad even has a chance to be relevant. The question is, if the Phillies happened to pull off the miracle, and come back in the Series…do they run they ad again? Is it free the second time? I mean, Macy’s is still getting some publicity this time, perhaps even more than they would from a properly done ad. Maybe the whole thing was intentional.
It doesn’t feel good to be talking about errors in the local paper. Heading into game five you’d like to see the series tied at 2-2. You’d like to feel like tonight is important for both teams, and not just the Phillies. If the Yankees are foiled by Cliff Lee again tonight, they still have two chances to lock up the series. C.C. Sabathia would pitch game seven if it goes that far, and aside from Chase Utley, he’s had the Phils under control. Maybe they’ll figure out how to pitch around Chase before a possible game seven. In all likelihood, however, we probably will not get that far. The longer this series goes, the more we should be reminded what a pleasure last year was. If the Phillies hadn’t ended the drought in ’08, this series would sting that much more. The scenario tonight is reminiscent of game 5 in 1993. The Phillies took a heart-breaking loss in game 4 to fall behind 3-1, and sent their ace to the hill. Curt Schilling came through with a masterpiece, but we all know how the Series ended. Three to one holes aren’t the easiest to climb out of, but if the Inquirer thinks it can happen…maybe it can. The Steps:
1. Cliff Lee has to answer the bell again. The Phillies offense will click again. It might be next April, but it will happen. They can’t afford to wait, though. They need 8 or 9 strong innings out of Lee. The bullpen, cannot be trusted. There’s no Phillies victory scenario that includes Lee pitching badly, so if he starts getting hit…well, it just can’t happen.
2. Pettitte balks at short rest. Andy looked a little off at the start of game three. The Phillies couldn’t keep the heat on, and he got into a groove, allowing the Yankees to come back. There’s a good chance Pedro won’t be as good in game 6, so they’ll need to jump on Pettitte, and stay on him. Send a message.
3. Bullpen miracle. A game seven would be interesting, if for no other reason than you’d like to see what the Phillies do on the mound. Does J.A. Happ start? Does Joe Blanton on short rest? Do they try to get a couple of pre-meltdown innings out of Cole Hamels, or does Charlie stick with him, loyal guy that he is? It’d be interesting, but the Phillies best chance to win game seven would probably be to throw some wild mix of four or five pitchers and hope lightning strikes. Even Cliff Lee on his side day could go an inning or two. That, and a couple more Utley bombs off Sabathia, and it’s parade time again.
We’ll start with tonight. Hopefully Mother Lovin lets us keep our glimmer.