I go way back to the 1960’s watching Phillies doubleheader baseball on TV. None of them ever measured up to the twin bill we watched yesterday against the Toronto Blue Jays.
First of all, it proves that seven inning doubleheader games are more exciting than nine inning games especially when your team just won two must win games.
We are use to watching seven-inning doubleheaders in the Florida State League over the years but this was the first season ever watching seven inning major league twin bills.
As a player in the local York County Central League back in the day, I played at first base in my only doubleheader. In makeup games we played two, seven inning games on the same day at the end of the season or lose our team’s forfeit fee.
The second take-a-way is that backup catchers gets a chance to shine in the second game of a doubleheader In only his second major league game, backup catcher Rafael Marchan hit a three-run homer into the right field seats at CBP in the 8-7 win in the second game. Watch HERE
I remember watching Clay Dalrymple, then a Phillies backup catcher, make his major league debut back in 1960. I will never forget him hitting two doubles in the second game of a Sunday afternoon doubleheader off the famous corrugated wall in right field at Connie Mack Stadium.
The third fact is that it is fun to win two games on the same day especially when a playoff spot is on the line. These games yesterday were must wins for the Phillies as they earned a tie for second place in the N.L. East and a potential spot in the playoffs.
Fourth, because the doubleheader this MLB season are seven inning games, we actually got to watch a pitcher throw a rare complete game shutout. Rarely do pitcher throw complete nine inning games any more. Seven inning games gives the pitcher a chance to earn the rare CG. Zach Eflin was brilliant in pitching a complete game, four hit, nine strikeout shutout in the first game.
I did pitch one complete game in my brief pitching career. I was a wild left-hander. I seem to remember walking 12 or so in seven innings of a teener league game or as we called it, the 13-15 League. Needless to say, I can’t recall ever pitching again in a game other than throwing batting practice. After adopting a Jim Bunning-type big follow through, I finally learned to how throw strikes but only in BP.
If the Phillies can make the post season, they should be well set with Aaron Nola, Zack Wheeler and Eflin setting up a formidable three-man starting rotation.
Let’s hope the Phillies do not have to play doubleheaders caused by a rainout or for health reasons in the playoffs. They go only three deep in quality starting pitching.
Of course the Phillies did try to win the 1964 N.L. pennant with a tw0-man rotation down the stretch and we all remember how that worked out!