To say I am anything less than incredibly impressed with Tim Redding would be a lie. Why? Despite all of the following things, he managed to work around his own shortcomings of the night to shut down one of the better offenses in baseball (or at least an offense that features Rollins, Utley and Howard). His stuff wasn't great tonight, as he gave up 7 hits and walked 2 in his 6 and 1/3 innings of work. He only struck out two batters and 59% of his pitches went for strikes (not bad, not great). The key to his performance tonight: getting out of jams. He was Cardiac Cordero-like out there, as he led the Phillies into the pit of despair on multiple occasions. Hats off to you, Tim Redding. You fought through it on a night where your stuff wasn't the best, and ended up giving up nothing but a big goose egg!
Now that I've gotten all of my sunshine and rainbows out of the way, we turn to Lastings Milledge. Per the gamer from Nationals.com, "'The swagger is part of my game since I broke in the big leagues. Every time I go out there, I feel I'm the best player out there,' Milledge said. "It's gets rough when you don't play to your potential.'" Yes, it does get rough when you don't play to your potential. I'm glad you've realized this, and I'm sure you'll end up being a solid major leaguer. But, seriously, Lastings. You are not the best player out there. I don't even have to look back to the box score to know that the Nationals started 5 position players better than you (Zimmerman, Young, Lopez, Guzman, Flores). Have confidence, not cockiness. Seriously, when I copy/pasted that comment to my roommate, he was just like "Wat?" Please, Lastings, just go out there every night and play your heart out. Let your play do the talking when it comes to whether or not you're the best player on the field. Leave the fans with visions of diving catches, doubles to the gap and stolen bases rather than costly strikeouts and poor play in center field.
Congrats to Jon Lester, who threw a no-hitter tonight. I won't go into the whole story, but it is very courageous to come back from the cancer he had not so long ago. If he pitched for a team that wasn't the Boston Red Sox, I would be more ecstatic (and would have probably devoted a whole post to it), but I will settle for a pat on the back and a blurb for the guy. Funny that the Sawx have 18 no-hitters all-time whereas the Mets have none.
Chico is starting Wednesday. For the sake of the well-being of my television set, I will not watch it. If Hill goes on the DL, I'd place my bet on Chico going back to the rotation for the time being (unless he bombs again on Wednesday). I certainly would like to see Clippard, Balester or Shell get the start, but I think Manny will keep giving Chico chances until Bowden sends him down.
Last note: according to the Nats Journal, Alfonso Soriano hit more homers last week (7) than the entire Nationals outfield has hit all season (6). One word: yuck.