Happy 4th of July Phillies Phans! It is another year, season, and Independence Day where Phillies Phans hope for a turnaround with their ballclub. Throughout this season manager, Joe Girardi has undoubtedly made questionable decisions that have led to blown leads and the opposing pitcher to attempt to strip down his to his birthday suit.
Well, it is not Max Scherzer’s Birthday, but the country’s and it is quite possible that Girardi may have concocted a new back-end solution to the Phillies’ woes.
Has the experiment worked?
Following a great performance by starting pitcher Zach Eflin, where he went 6 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, and 2 SO acquired his third win of the season. Eflin was followed by Bailey Falter, who went scoreless. Then, Archie Bradley went scoreless. Finally, Ranger Suarez went scoreless and saved the game.
Phillies Phans… It happened. The Phillies actually defended a lead and did not give way.
Ranger Suarez has been a mixed bag of usage which is typical of the Girardi Phillies this season. He has played a role as a long reliever, middle reliever, and set-up man thus far. Now, for good measure, the skipper thought why not put the guy with the lowest ERA in the bullpen in that final inning to see what happened.
Look what happened. Zeros all around! Especially in the visitors’ box score.
This could be premature, but I think the Phillies are finally backing up Ranger Suarez’s abilities. They have entered the Ranger Zone! (Cue the patriotic classic movie Top Gun)
Earlier this season an article about the Phillies bullpen was written to discuss the final “Four Horseman” would close out games. Needless to say, this was a bold statement and did not pan out.
Bringing up more relievers from the minors to see if they are able to apply themselves to the show is a great strategy. Falter started off a little rough but has definitely focused and adapted. Archie Bradley has since adjusted and thrived as both a jolt of energy and as a reliever. Ranger Suarez has been dominant all season and giving him this shot in high-pressure situations might be the key to have a full-fledged reliever.
This might all be highly optimistic, but Ranger Suarez has proven his ability to translate well to the majors in every single pitching role he has gotten over the past 3-4 seasons, and it is time the Phillies reward his efforts.
Moral of the Story
This bullpen should be a force to reckoned with and it is about time that these professional athletes getting paid millions of dollars act and perform what they know to be their worth.
It is time to enter the Ranger Zone!
Happy Fourth Phillies Phans! Let’s hope the Phillies can do it again!
Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images North America/TNS
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