One way to look at Game 1 of the NLCS is to say the Phillies were helped out by the dimensions of their ballpark, which is as it should be.
There are not many parks in the majors where you can hit a ball 400-plus feet and not end up with a homer, but Manny Ramirez hit it to that one spot in the first inning and ended up with a RBI double instead of a two-run homer. The two homers that the Phillies socked off Derek Lowe in the sixth inning, when they got the only runs that Cole Hamels needed, would have been warning-track fly balls in a lot of places.
Hamels still pitched a very good game, but it's important to have that bit of context when the columnists are talking about who was clutch. (The second Dodgers run was also ballpark-assisted, with Matt Kemp looping a ball down the right-field line that fell in and bounced out of play for an automatic double.)
The best reads on the web coming out of this game are Crashburn Alley's writeup on the game and the response Baseball Prospectus' Joe Sheehan wrote in regard to Tim McCarver's ignorant comments about Ramirez. The Dodgers can still win this in seven games.
Something to mull over is whether the Dodgers bring back Lowe in Game 4. He was taken out in the sixth inning. By the way, when was the last time Fox aired a LCS game and it was over in less than three hours? (ShysterBall coined a new word to describe the typical Fox playoff broadcast: "Turgid-a-thons.")
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