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Could Phillies’ 2010 NLCS rematch against Giants put their offense to sleep again?

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“Remember what it took to get you here. And remember what he did to you last time, right?”
                                                                                                     

                                                                                                         Apollo Creed- Rocky III 

This upcoming rematch of last year’s NLDS against the Giants could tell a lot of things. We all know the Phillies can pitch, but the main Ryan Howard photo : Perez, APconcern here is the Phillies’ bats. After all, their team average of .216 is what denied them a chance of a third straight World Series appearance in 2010. Moreover, your right fielder who slugged 27 home runs last year is gone. Which is why you need another right fielder, but I’m not going to start on that again....

So yeah, the Phils’ pitching is strong, but some opponents’ starters down the road will be just as good if not better. So don’t be surprised if the Giants’ pitchers make them look exactly like they did last October. Going into Sunday's game, they had a team ERA of 2.10 in their last 11 games. It could happen.

To be fair, two of the three games in the series involve two pitchers (Vance Worley, Kyle Kendrick) who most likely won’t be starting a potential playoff game against San Francisco. But all of the Giants’ starters will be (Tim Lincecum, Barry Zito, and Matt Cain). While only one of the Phillies’ three aces (Cole Hamels) will make an appearance. You’re a sneaky one, Bruce Bouchy. Lincecum is never fun, Zito seems to have found new life after signing that ridiculous contract several years ago, and Cain was absolutely dominant against the Phils in the NLCS last year.

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To the Phillies’ credit, they hit a decent San Diego pitching staff rather well this past weekend. But as you are well aware, San Francisco’s starters are a notch above San Diego’s. Going into Monday, the Giants have taken over the top spot in the majors with a team ERA of 3.10. The Phils are a close second with a 3.13 ERA. The Giants are arrogant, cocky, and can go toe to toe with the Phightins. This is a Phillies team who doesn’t show much emotion. In saying that, don’t let the facade fool you. They know what happened last year. They were embarrassed, and that should be motivation itself. They play the Giants again next week, where the team didn’t hit well even when they were a powerhouse.

But hopefully by then, the Phillies will have some reinforcements.

 

Joe Vallee is a lifelong Phillies fan and former Phillies batboy. Joe has claimed to have seen about 98% of every Phillies game since the early 1980's.

Contact Joe at Jvallee@philly2philly.com

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