When you are a fan of a team like the Philadelphia Phillies, sometimes you’d rather score 10 runs and lose than score one run and win, particularly when your team has been struggling to score runs.

Saturday was one of those days.

The Phillies lost to the Minnesota Twins on Saturday afternoon by a score of 13-10 in a wild game in which the Phillies led 9-4 going into the ninth inning and managed to blow a five run lead.  

The Phils tossed the game when four different relievers allowed runs to give the game away the Twins in the later innings.

The positives from Saturday’s game far outweigh the negatives. The Phillies got off to a fast start, scoring eight runs in the first three innings. The Phillies came up with some clutch hitting, with Ross Gload hitting a game-tying two-out home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to extend the game.

Most of all, the Phillies hitters have come back to life, and frankly the entire City of Philadelphia finds itself climbing back in off the ledge.

Ryan Howard hit his fourth home run in the last four games and is now batting .291, Chase Utley went 3-for-5 to get his batting average “up” to .267, and Jayson Werth is starting to salvage his contract year after a devastating drought.

Hell, even Wilson Valdez hit a home run and failed to add to his staggering 10 double plays on the season.

Cole Hamels also had an effective outing for the Phils, which is always re-assuring. After giving up three runs in the first inning, Hamels settled down and gave up only one more run while going seven innings. Hamels finished with seven strikeouts and only one walk.

In fact, the only part of the Phillies game that failed to function on Saturday was the part of the Phillies team that they expect to get trouble from—the bullpen. Jose Contreras, Brad Lidge, Chad Durbin, and Danys Baez combined to give up nine runs in less than four innings of work.

And you know what?  The Phillies will take it.

When Roy Halladay pitched his perfect game against Josh Johnson on May 29th in Florida, it was a very exciting game for everyone involved.

At the same time, though, there was something disconcerting about the win: the Phillies managed only a single unearned run against Johnson, and barely won the game despite Halladay’s dominance.

That is not how this team wins games.

At the end of the day, the Philadelphia Phillies will win games in 2010 the same way they did in 2009 and 2008: by scoring lots of runs and surviving their pitching. And when a team follows that model, there are going to be days in which that team is going to lose 13-10. But on most days, the team will come away with a victory.  

And if scoring 10 runs on Saturday is another sign that the Phillies offense is back, then they know there will be plenty of victories to come.

This is where the Phillies need to be.


Asher B. Chancey lives in Philadelphia and is a co-founder of BaseballEvolution.com.

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