The coldest team in baseball has dropped 17 of their past 21 games, falling back to where you’d expect a rebuilding team that’s finished either last or second-to-last in its division four years in a row to end up in year five.
But hey, at least Aaron Nola’s back. The third-year right-hander returned from the disabled list on Sunday after being sidelined for a month by a back injury. Acknowledging that his first start back against a Pirates team that hit worse than any other club over the past sparkled. In seven innings, the 23-year-old right-hander and foundational piece of the Phillies rotation allowed just one run on four hits, striking out five and walking two. His weapon of choice? A nasty curveball. In the first two seasons of Nola’s career, opponents batted just .194 and .167 against Nola’s Uncle Charlie. On Sunday, he fired 32 curves, had only eight of them hit into play, with just one of those eight falling for a hit.
Before you scroll down and watch a GIF of Nola’s majestic yakker, be warned: It’s extremely not safe for work.