As we flipped the TV from the end of the Flyers game over to check in to see how the local nine were doing, my dad -- trying to be his typical positive self -- said, "At least we can count on the Phillies."
It's true. They seem pretty reliable these days and proved it once again last night behind another impressive outing from Vance Worley. Making his second start of the season due to Joe Blanton's DL stint, Worley pitched six strong innings, allowing only one run while striking out seven. The solid combo of J.C. Romero and Michael Stutes pitched a clean inning apiece and the offense put up a 7 spot to secure a win despite Danys Baez pitching like Danys Baez in the ninth.
The offense looked solid from top to bottom, with Ryan Howard being the only starter who failed to reach base. Even Vance Worley got in on the hitting action and later scored a run.
The most promising news on the night for Phillies fans, however, was the continued recent warming of Raul Ibanez's bat. Raul started things off in the 5th with a bomb of a homer to the seats in right center -- absolutely ripped. He finished the night 3-4 with a RBI and a pair of runs scored.
During the postgame interview, Sarge Matthews joked to Ibanez about the other players in the clubhouse no longer having to hide the razors.
If Ibanez can continue hitting at a respectable level, the Phillies offense should be just fine.
All in all, another great night at the bank to secure a series victory over the Nationals. Doc Halladay will go for the sweep this evening against Evil John Lannan before the Braves come to town this weekend.
The Phillies' depth at second base has taken a hit.
Jesmuel Valentin, the starter at Triple A Lehigh Valley, is headed for surgery after dislocating his left shoulder. General manager Matt Klentak indicated that it was likely Valentin would miss the remainder of the season.
Valentin, 23, made a good showing in big-league spring training camp and, in fact, was the last position player cut from the 25-man roster. He had been off to a slow start at Lehigh Valley, hitting just .229 with a .573 OPS in his first 29 games.
With Valentin out, the Phillies could promote top second base prospect Scott Kingery from Double A to Triple A. While that is likely to happen at some point, nothing is imminent, Klentak said. The IronPigs will use veteran Pedro Florimon at second for the time being.
Kingery, 23, has been on a tear at Reading. He entered Monday leading the Eastern League in homers (13), extra-base hits (25) and slugging (.651). Overall, he was hitting .289 with a 1.018 OPS.
"Not imminent," Klentak said of a possible promotion for Kingery. "Very possible down the road. We've got more than enough infield coverage (at Triple A) to be fine and Kingery is good where he is."
Kingery, a 2015 draft pick, played just 37 games at the Double A level last season. He entered Monday having played in 37 games there this season.
Kingery on Monday was named the Eastern League player of the week for May 15-21. He went 9 for 30 with five homers, six RBIs, nine runs scored and an .833 OPS.
With all the bat flips going on in Major League Baseball by the likes of Odubel Herrera and Jose Bautista, it's a good bet that kids watching the game are taking notice.
Gloucester Catholic High School's Chris Turco has apparently seen the celebration.
In a game on Sunday, Turco launched the ball high above the wall in left field. However, he may have launched the bat even higher.
Look at this ridiculous bat flip.
According to Kevin Minnick of South Jersey Sports Digest, both of the next hitters were plunked and Turco's team lost.
Despite that, Turco is giving the pros a run for their money in the bat flip department.