Thursday, July 24, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Phillies' scene shifts

On to Milwaukee.

Phillies' scene shifts

Down here at Gate D-11, it is just past 5 am and the traveling party is assembling -- and I have to tell you, it is one fine-looking group. The plan for most of us is to fly to Chicago and drive the 90 minutes to Milwaukee. I told Hagen he could drive the first part and I'd take over when we got to Kenosha, but he says he'll take the whole thing. Hagen is a horse, much more effective on three hours' rest than CC Sabathia was on three days' rest in Game 2.

In case you missed it, the Phils are ahead by two games to none in their five-game division series over the Brewers. Their position does not suck. But everyone knows how quickly this thing can turn if Milwaukee wins Game 3 on Saturday night. To pretend otherwise is foolish. The Phils still have not hit, bunching all of their scoring into a couple of quick bursts and just meandering along the rest of the time. The middle of the lineup is silent. The rest of it is inconsistent. Excellent starting pitching and a couple of key moments have won these games.

Watching this team, you are simultaneously impressed by their demeanor and wondering about when the lineup is going to kick in. You like their chances and, at the same time, cannot believe that they can continue to win with only these intermittent bursts of offense. There is plenty to chew on here. They don't play five-game series in the NHL, but the hockey people all say, "It isn't a series until a home team loses a game." And, well, that hasn't happened yet. This is not over.

With that, we'll all be at the Phillies' and Brewers' workouts this afternoon, somewhere north of Kenosha.

Rich Hofmann Daily News Sports Columnist
About this blog
Rich Hofmann arrived at the Daily News in 1980 for a job whose status was officially designated as "full-time, temporary." A senior at Penn at the time, he was hired to fill in on the copy desk during a staff illness. The notion of him covering the Eagles or being a columnist did not exist in anyone's imagination. It was supposed to be six weeks and out, but he never left. It is only one of the reasons why so many people have concerns about him as a potential house guest. Rich has blogged the postseasons of the Flyers and Eagles. E-mail Rich at Reach Rich at

Rich Hofmann Daily News Sports Columnist
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