Was there ever any doubt about the outcome? Stoked to a five-run first inning (batting around, thanks in large part to a three-run Juan Rivera HR), and then elevated further to a 6-0 lead, the Dodgers coughed it up and allowed Philadelphia the sweep. Nine runs, spanning the fourth, fifth, and sixth innings, did the trick. Another ninth-inning rally made the score close, but again, it's no cigar. The Dodgers can't play in the Phillies' league. Heck, they may not even be able to play in the Rockies' league.
The funny thing is, unlike yesterday in which I felt like my emotions were being toyed with, this time, I felt a certain degree of inevitability about the outcome. The six-run lead didn't give me enough confidence to think we would sustain it throughout the game, and when the first cracks in Chad Billingsley started to appear in the fourth inning, I knew it was over.
Replace Bills with Hong-Chih Kuo? Count on another couple of runs. Replace Kuo with Blake Hawksworth? Count on giving up the lead. Put in Matt Guerrier, Mike MacDougal and Javy Guerra? Sure, they'll do fine, but of course at that point we were losing, so it didn't matter, as we weren't going to stage a come back. Matt Kemp's 4-for-5 day is wasted, as is Rivera's 3-for-4, 4 RBI day. James Loney had 4 LOB in a 1-for-3 day, topped (bottomed?) by Andre Ethier's 0-for-4, 2 K day.
It was like getting in the ring with a heavyweight prizefighter. You may get in a couple of jabs and pokes for a round or two, but at some point, the big blows are going to take you down and knock you out. It's just a matter of time. At least there was half price food and non-alcoholic drink.