Of course, there's a downside to that, too. If the Phillies happen to lose a few games at some point in the second half, you can almost hear the question coming. "Charlie, how can a team with an All-Star at every position not be winning more?"
* Top 10 list (non-Letterman division): For the second straight year, The Sporting News has polled a panel of 125 Hall of Famers, major award winners and assorted experts to determine the 50 best players in baseball today.
Albert Pujols of the Cardinals was the easy winner, followed by Twins catcher Joe Mauer and Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.
But the Phillies had three players in the Top 10: Roy Halladay (6), Chase Utley (9) and Ryan Howard (10). Only the Yankees, with Derek Jeter finishing fourth, had more than one player in the upper echelon.
"Charlie, how can a team with three of the 10 best players in baseball . . . "
* Recount: Here's one last thought on the mini-brouhaha that erupted after Charlie Manuel let Roy Halladay throw 132 pitches in a 2-1 loss to the Pirates Tuesday night: Halladay has reached that pitch count only once before in his career. On June 2, 2009, he threw 133 pitches for the Blue Jays. Five days later, he had a complete-game shutout against the Royals.
But . . . 5 days after that, he strained his groin, left the game after three innings and had to go on the disabled list. So we'll see.
* Working overtime: Triple A Lehigh Valley needed 15 innings to win at Gwinnett on Monday. Back home the next night, they went 16 innings in a loss to Louisville. In two days, a dozen IronPigs hurlers threw a total of 454 pitches.