Preliminary reports suggest Phils still have a ways to go

Are the Phillies on the same level as a team like the Boston Red Sox?

All we have to go on is this recently completed three-game series, the final two games of which suggest no.

The party line throughout the season has held that the Phillies are a team built on offense. Thus, their pitching expectations are different than a team that doesn't have the lineup that the Phillies have. By and large, the Phillies just need their pitchers to "give us a chance to win," we've been reminded time and time again.

But we've also been reminded that baseball is a game of failure, that even the greatest hitters are going to fail 7 out of 10 times. Sometimes, that failure is dispersed evenly. Other times, like Chase Utley's current stretch, it comes all it once.

Basic mathematics suggest that it is impossible for an offense to win every single game for a baseball team.

During those stretches of failure, a team needs its pitching to win games. And therein lies the question: do the Phillies have pitching that is capable of winning games on its own? In Cole Hamels, the answer is yes. But what about after Cole Hamels?

Paul Hagen weighs in on some of the Phillies other worries in the hear and now.


Robin Roberts was at the ballpark yesterday. He's living in Temple Terrace, Fla., which is a suburban area of Tampa near the campus of University of South Florida. I was amazed at how sharp Roberts is at the age of 81. He spoke in great detail about his playing days. He's a funny guy. And I have a funny feeling no major league pitcher today will ever retire with as many complete games as he did (305).