Ah, the All Star Break... four days without Phillies baseball, which is pretty much the only reprieve from these brutal long summer days. It's especially awful from a news standpoint with two of the big four locked out. You would think somebody would try to take advantage of the lull and throw a major tennis tournament or big race in there. Something. But no. We get the ESPYs, which is basically four hours of ESPN patting themselves on the back. Nice job, Bristol.
As for today, Cole Hamels (10-4, 2.40) takes the ball to stave off the city of Philadelphia's boredom for at least one more afternoon. He's also charged with holding down the Atlanta Braves, who throw a familiar foe in Derek Lowe (5-6, 4.21) in their bid for a series win.
Lowe is 8-5 with a 2.99 ERA in his career versus the Phillies, and even though he is not having his best season, he can still bring it. On the other side, Cole is having his best season to date, but by virtue of pitching today, he will not be available for the All Star Game. Bummer.
Because after this, that's all that's left for a few days, folks. That, and Chris Berman reciting, "Back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back..."
Over and over and over again.
And over again.