When you watch great baseball games, you can get an appreciation for clutch hitting and fielding. We’ve seen it in Philadelphia, but not in a long time.
Take last night’s extra inning game with the Nationals, runners on in the top of the 9th for the Phillies with Darin Ruf up to bat. Jonathan Papelbon on the mound, throwing the ball straight down the plate at knee level. You would think that Ruf could make some contact, but what does he do? Practically nothing. He watches pitches sail right down the middle of the plate then the count works against him and he pops out. He did the same thing in the 11th, then grounded out. What is he waiting on a Septa bus to roll down the middle of the plate?
Being a really good player brings some basic requirements. A lot of these Phillies players on this team don’t have what it takes to make them really good ballplayers. Hence the 97 loss (and counting) season.