Do or Die?
Is this it for the Phillies? They open a three-game series tonight against the Mets at Shea Stadium.
Do or Die?
Is this it for the Phillies? Is this the weekend that makes or breaks their season?
History says it is not. History says there are 19 games to play after their weekend series against the Mets at Shea Stadium. History says anything can happen in 19 games. Like the '64 Phillies collapse. Like the '07 Mets collapse. Like the ... like the ... well, those are pretty much the two greatest collapses in baseball history. The '78 Red Sox had a 7 1/2 game lead over the Yankees with 32 to play. The '69 Cubs had a 9 1/2 game lead over the Mets on Aug. 14. The '87 Blue Jays had a 3 1/2 game lead over the Tigers with seven to play. The '38 Pirates had a 7 game lead on the Cubs on Sept. 7.
The Phillies enter this weekend series three behind the Mets with 22 to play. They've got to win at least 2 of 3.
If they lose 2 of 3, they would be four back with 19 to play.
If the Mets finish 10-9 (.526), the Phillies would need to go 14-5 (.737).
It's not impossible, but the odds of a collapse between the same two teams in back-to-back seasons are long. The Phillies need to show some of that '07 magic beginning tonight and leave Shea -- can't wait for that dump to be blown up, by the way -- no worse than two back.
It's up to Brett Myers to get things started.
John Gonzalez, aka Gonzo, says get the Jack Daniels ready.