Thursday, May 08, 2008

Striking Distance (or slightly beyond)

Game 35 - Phillies

Phillies 5, D-Backs 4

Record: 20 - 15

Dear Ryan-

It's brutal, ain't? Trust me, it's as painful for me to watch as I am sure it is for you when you walk away flummoxed after each at bat. I doubt you care to know that 50 K's in 35 games translates to a new MLB single season record of 231 which shatters your old record by 15%.

On top of what is a humiliating plunge into a realm inhabited only by pitchers and late season call ups, you are playing in THE WORST city in ALL of Major League Baseball for players languishing your current state. I shudder with fear at the thought of how you will be received once you fellas return to the Bank after this Left Coast swing.

I of course, am not a native of that cesspool - I mean, lovely city. That means I do not resent you. I am not angry with you. I don't want to trade you. I don't think you're a bum. Quite the opposite, I writhe uncomfortably in my otherwise comfy overstuffed club chair each time you come up. I hope against all hope that you will break free of this hellish slump. At bat after at bat, you either flail away helplessly at pitches just beyond the black, contort your massive frame against junk down and in or fecklessly stare down a pitch right on the black. When you try to lay off, they catch the black. When you try to go the other way, the ball naughtily jumps away. When you get desperate, you corkscrew yourself into the dirt.

I was going to post a picture of the strike zone. I was going to post your stats. I was going to post a link to explain the different pitches offered up my Major League pitchers. Those are the actions of a native Philadelphian. I am from a higher species. Out my way, we throw a life preserver out to folks who are drowning. I prefer to show a little charity. First and foremost, you are a likable guy. You are a lovable, modern day Sultan of Swat minus all the boorish and loutish personal behavior of your storied predecessor. By all counts, you are a dream for any front office. Right now, you need some time off. If Uncle Cholly sits you down, do yourself a favor and graciously accept it. This too shall pass and hopefully it will make you a more treacherous a hitter when you make it back.



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