[[switching to first person mode]] I didn't get to watch the Phillies/Reds game which is a shame because I missed something really special. I missed something amazingly special. When I first heard about it, my first reaction was, "You're kidding me, right?" I mean, come on. Sure, I expected Halladay to be very good like he always is. I figured he would be tough for the Reds. But a no-hitter? Against the best offense in the National League? No, I never would have expected that. Not in a million years.
From what this news story said, there wasn't even close to a hit during the game. According to the linked story, Rollins had to be a bit rangy a couple of times but other than that, it was easy pickings for Halladay. As usual during games like that one, little credit is given to the catcher. But Ruiz is outstanding and Halladay mentioned how he got in a rhythm early and mentioned his catcher as a big reason for that. But again, a good rhythm is something I would believe. But a no-hitter?
The unfortunate fact for the Reds and the National League is that Halladay's performance during the season and now the post season--the 21 wins--the two no-hitters--the WAR Halladay racked up, all point out one very essential thing. The National League is not in the same class as the American League. Halladay was always the best pitcher in the American League. But he was never this good. And believe me, you can't get any gooder than this. (yeah, the bad English was on purpose). The Phillies are the only team in the National League that can play heads up with the American League. And the poor Reds are finding that out first hand. LaRussa couldn't beat them. Torre couldn't beat them. Bobby Cox couldn't beat them. If the Phillies are not in the World Series, it would be one of the biggest shocks since Lou Piniella's Seattle Mariners bowed out in the first round after winning 111 games. Or was it 114? Well, you get the point.
Which brings up a very important point. Well, it's important to me anyway. When teams are talking about unfair competitition and lack of competitive balance and teams being able to buy the best players, how come nobody ever talks about the Phillies? How come they get a pass? The Phillies play in one of the best markets, they can wildly overpay their first baseman, they can afford to go out and get Lee last year and Halladay and Oswalt this year and nobody cries foul. Why is that?
You have to understand that I don't give a rat's posterior on how the Phillies get to where they are going. I'm definitely a social Darwinist when it comes to baseball. Hey, if a team plays their cards right and is successful and can buy an advantage, then good for them. While Loria is pocketing the Yankees' and Red Sox's money, that's his problem if he can't field more than a .500 team. So, personally, I have nothing but admiration for how the Phillies have operated. I'm just wondering why they are never in those same gun scopes that other teams are when they do the same thing. You've never seen a headline that read, "The Phillies: The Best Team Money Can Buy."
Wow, how did I get this off track? Must be because I went to first person. This was about Halladay right? Holy Hanna! As a friend of mine uses as an expletive, Halladay threw a no-hitter! You're kidding me, right?