ESPN has taken notice. Opposing managers around the NL have taken notice. Phans have taken notice. The Philadelphia Phillies are HOT! Over the last 9 games they are 8-1 and have outscored the opponents 78-37 (more than doubling them). During this hot streak we've seen offensive explosions of 20, 15, and 12 runs; and we've witnessed fine pitch performances from Adam Eaton (twice), Brett Myers, and Kyle Kendrick. Shane Victorino had a hitting streak, Brad Lidge continues perfection in save situations, Pat Burrell is more clutch than a stick shift, Chase Utley is a hitting machine, the bullpen continues to shut up all the naysayers from the offseason. Phils are now 10 games above .500 with a record of 35-25, good for a 2.5 game lead over the pesky Marlins.
The Phils are on a roll, and it may be difficult to stop them. Enter stage left: Edinson Volquez (aka- difficult), with a MLB leading 83 k's, 1.46 era, and 7-2 record. The Reds got him in the Josh Hamilton trade. That trade is amazing, as Hamilton may go on to the be the MVP of the AL while Volquez the Cy Young of the NL. Last time Volquez faced the Phils he dominated them while his counterpart Brett Myers (also tonight's match-up) fizzled. Should shape up to be a good ball game if the rains permit.
*Happy birthday Juan Carlos Romero. JC has compiled a 1.26 era since joiningg the Phils mid-summer last season pitching in 76 games, logging 57 innings, racking up 27 holds, and striking out 49 batters.