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Case in point came last night when the Phillies completed a 4-game sweep of the reeling Florida Marlins with a 3-0 victory behind a masterful 2-hit complete-game shutout by the Human Torch Cliff Lee. When you have those kinds of horses on your pitching staff, more often than not, 3 runs may be all you need to get over the hump until your offense starts finding itself.
Here are the numbers for the Phillies Fantastic Four at the 70-game mark--
1. Mr. Fantastic Roy Halladay: 9-3, 4 CG, 114 K, 2.56 ERA, 1.04 WHIP
2. The Human Torch Cliff Lee: 7-5, 2 CG, 2 SHO, 111 K, 3.12 ERA, 1.14 WHIP
3. Invisible Dude Cole Hamels: 9-2, 1 CG, 97 K, 2.49 ERA, 0.92 WHIP
4. The Thing Roy Oswalt: 4-4, 38 K, 3.14 ERA, 1.27 WHIP
The Phillies bullpen has also been masterful. New closer Ryan Madson has 15 SAVES to only 1 BLOWN SAVE and as a whole the Phillies bullpen has a major league-low 2 BLOWN SAVES.
The pitching staff as a whole is No. 1 in the majors with a 44-26 record, No. 1 in CG (7), No. 1 in SHO (9), No. 1 in fewest runs allowed (231), No. 1 in fewest earned runs allowed (218), No. 1 in fewest walks allowed (181), No. 1 in team ERA (3.05) and No. 2 in team WHIP (1.19).
With 92 games left and a 5.5 game lead in the NL East, the Phillies are well on their way to a 5th consecutive division title and probably much more. Something tells me these guys are still going to be alive and kickin' come Halloween.
By the way, this is coming from a disgruntled Mets fan who understands reality. Like it or not, the NL East is Philly's world and we're just living in it.
For a great post on the Phillies Fab Four follow this link, http://sportschatterings.blogspot.com/2010/12/phillies-phantastic-phoursome.html