Cole Hamels was absolutely dominant against the Braves this evening, tossing a 5-hit complete-game shutout on the way to a 3-0 victory. It was a pleasure to watch the lefty go to work and Phillies fans can now get excited knowing we'll get to enjoy Cole for years to come in Philadelphia.
But one of the single most entertaining plays of the game came from young Dom Brown in left field during the top of the fifth inning. Brown's cannon for an arm has caused a stir on Twitter in the past, with Phillies beat writer Jim Salisbury coining the "Hose Report" to update others on the hose of an arm the prospect-turned-everydayer possesses.
The Hose Report on Tuesday night: strong.
Here's how it went down:
[watch video of Brown nailing McCann at second on a rope here]
With two outs, pesky Phillies-killer Brian McCann ripped a ball down the left field line which bounced off the wall.
Brown played it perfectly and got it on one hop. That'd be a double for most hitters, but McCann isn't exactly speedy and Brown has a rocket.
It was a smooth transition and turn...
Dom let's er rip...
The rope pulled Chase slightly off the bag...
But it was such a rocket he had plenty of time to get back and tag McCann...
Brown also continued his solid play at the plate, showing plenty of patience and knocking in an RBI earlier in the game when he turned what looked like a single into a double. He may have gotten a bit lucky he wasn't nailed on that one. [video of the RBI double here]
Either way, the future looks a bit more promising for Dom Brown this time around with the big club.
And make no mistake about it, the hose is strong.
RICHMOND, Va. -- Justin Tillman had 16 points and nine rebounds to lead five VCU players in double figures in a 90-52 victory over La Salle on Sunday.
VCU held La Salle to 15 made field goals and forced 16 turnovers.
VCU went on a 19-0 first-half run -- with 11 points from JeQuan Lewis -- for a 38-14 lead and the Rams led 42-16 at halftime after shooting 51.5 percent. Lewis made 5 of 6 shots and had 13 of his 15 points in the first half.
Samir Doughty added 15 points for VCU (15-5, 5-2 Atlantic 10). Ahmed Hamdy-Mohamed had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Jordan Burgess scored 10. Tillman was 7 of 10 from the field as the Rams shot 56.5 percent.
Jordan Price and Saul Phiri each scored 11 points for La Salle (11-6, 5-2) and Pookie Powell added 10. It was a season-high for the freshman Phiri but the Explorers were just 15-of-53 shooting (28.3 percent).
Well, if anyone hoped the Sixers' performance at game's end against Portland on Friday night -- with Joel Embiid riding the bench, ruled out for the game's remainder with a left knee contusion -- would carry over to an entirely Embiid-less game again Saturdaynight... I guess you're not alone, 'coz I sorta did. Perhaps it shouldn't have been particularly surprising to see that the Sixers were still the same team last night in Atlanta they were the previous Saturday against the Wizards: good enough to hang against an above-average East team, but not nearly good enough to actually win.
At least they kept this one closer longer. Normally, against the Hawks, once the single-digit lead in the first half balloons into the double-digit lead in the third quarter, it never deflates back, but this time we cut it down to seven a couple times -- just never hitting that one big shot that would've really made things interesting, ultimately losing 110-93. It doesn't help that Nik Stauskas is in the midst of one of his most refrigerated runs as a Sixer, going just 7-30 (3-16 from deep) over Philly's last five games, or that Dario Saric is similarly bricking shots near and wide, a remarkable 2 for 22 over his last couple contests.
This, sadly, is a primary reason why the Sixers' playoff hopes, while fun to dream about, are still unlikely to be more than a flicker. Over the next few weeks, the Sixers have a trio of back-to-backs coming up, with the back-end games coming against Milwaukee, Sacramento and San Antonio -- none of which Philly, 2-12 without their star center, are probable to win sans JoJo. Even if they can take care of business with Embiid on the court, it'll be tough to make up the ground that the Sons of Sam need to while they have to drop one every three or four games as Joel sits.
That's fine, though. This season's been super-fun, but we shouldn't get too far ahead of ourselves: Let's ensure Embiid's health, maybe get Ben Simmons out there too, secure a nice draft pick or two (though the plummeting Kings could be of significant help with that themselves), and focus on making next year even more of a thing. The future remains impossibly bright, even if the present is going to have to be borderline-unwatchable once or twice a week.