We're Back, Phillies Fall Back

Chase Utley gets a hit and scores in yesterday's 3-2 loss to the Angels. They could use more of that this week from Utley.

Like The Onion's Jim Anchower would say, "Hola, amigos. It's been a while since I rapped at ya," but I left the country this weekend for a wedding. But I'm back in the States and packing for a three-city, nine-game, 10-day road trip through Oakland, Texas and Atlanta.

What did I miss while I was gone?

Oh, yeah. The Phillies are in a nasty funk, losing seven of their last eight games. Since June 8, when the Phillies swept the Braves at Turner Field, the Phillies are 3-9, which ties them with the Astros and Blue Jays for the worst record in baseball. Fortunately for the Phillies, nobody in the NL East is really playing well -- the Mets are 7-5 while the Marlins and Braves are 6-7 since June 8 -- so they've been able to hold onto first place. But there's no question they need to pull themselves together on this road trip.

Charlie Manuel called their just completed 1-5 homestand against the Red Sox and Angels a good test.

They flunked.


Chase Utley finally snapped his hitless streak. I think it's safe to say they really could stand for him to go on a tear this week.


In the Phillies Notebook, what was So Taguchi thinking yesterday?