Well in about an hour or so, Game 6 of the Fall Classic will be under way in the Bronx. For the Fightin’ Phils’, they have the self-proclaimed “most influential player to ever step foot in Yankee stadium” taking the mound with full rest against Baseball’s all time post-season win leader and self admitted steroid user, Andy Pettite on 3 days rest.
There are so many things that I could say that have been mentioned repeatedly over the last couple of days but this game really comes down to one simple thing…
Can the Phillies bats, specifically Ryan Howard carry them into a 7th game?
I have never seen anyone go from supernova hot to Bruntlett-esque, in such a short period of time. Howard’s been off-balance the entire series. He’s been taking fastballs for strikes and lunging at outside breaking balls. The most frustrating part about his struggles is even an armchair manager such as myself can clearly identify his problem so you know Ryan is well aware of the issue, it’s just all about execution. Stay back on the ball, trust your hands to catch up to a fastball and react to the breaking ball. DO NOT TRY AND PULL EVERYTHING!
If you see Ryan rip one opposite way for a hit you will be able to hear his sigh of relief all the way down in the Delaware Valley. All it takes is one and “The Big Piece” could be back. It’s time for the big man to pray to Jobu and carry his team, like he has so many times before.