The past week or so has proven to be quite successful for the Phillies, a spectacle which we are not so acquainted to nowadays. The Phightins have won eight of their nine games coming out of the all-star break. And on top of that, our very own Cole Hamels made history on July 25, by throwing his first no-hitter while accumulating 13 strikeouts while doing so.
However, let’s not get too excited.
I can pretty confidently guarantee that this play probably will not continue for the remainder of the season. I am sure we all remember that nice little winning streak we had back in late May, and I am sure we all remember even better what has happened since that streak.
But, nonetheless, that is not to say that the Phillies have not been exciting to watch recently, it is a nice little change-up to have some adrenaline pumping while watching our team play. While this extra adrenaline, and the wins that come with it, might be a nice sideshow, these past ten days also offer us a little glimpse into the future of Phillies’ baseball.
Over the past week and a half we have seen the youth of the franchise flourish, many of whom we hope to still see in red pinstripes a few years from now making a playoff push.
We have finally seen the fresh face of Aaron Nola, the future of the Phillies’ pitching staff, and he has been everything we could have wished for out of a young player, if not more. In Nola’s debut he gave up only one run on five hits with six strikeouts in six innings pitched. In his second outing, where he received his first major league win, he pitched 7.2 innings allowing four runs on only five hits.
We have seen rookie phenom, Maikel Franco, continue to prove his worth. Franco continues to sit at the top of the leader boards amongst fellow rookies. He is amongst the best in the league in categories such as home runs, RBIs, batting average, and slugging percentage. He continues to make a case for himself as a potential rookie of the year candidate.
We have seen Cesar Hernandez continue to succeed as the starting second baseman. Hernandez has hit in five of his last seven games. In two of those games, he had multiple hit games. As Hernandez’s playing time continues to increase, so does his confidence and his necessary leadership skills which will be needed in the years to come.
We have seen Odubel Herrera continue to shape his role as the energy man in the outfield and at the top of the order. He is the necessary spark plug, the former Shane Victorino, whom the Phillies’ desperately need to mold. We all witnessed his heroic catches to save Hamels’ no-hitter but we have also seen him boost his average with improved batwork and his great speed. Herrera has reached safely in eight of his last 10 games.
Over the past week and a half it finally seems as though we are beginning to forget about the players of the past – we are finally tuning them out as our younger players continue to grow and improve as ballplayers. It is refreshing to see the Phillies win a few games; but arguably, it is even nicer to breathe some fresh air from a ball club that has seemingly been stuck in the past for the last few years.
While the wins may not continue, we can be sure to continue to witness the improvement of the building blocks of the future.