After throwing five more innings in today's game against the Twins, Phillies starting pitcher David Buchnanan showed his last stellar start was no fluke.
Not known as a strikeout pitcher, 25-year-old Buchanan K'd six of the fist nine batters he faced in his last start against the Rays. He went four innings that day, allowing one run, two hits, and no walks. That trend continued today, except for the runs - Buchanan hurled five innings against Minnesota with a slick change-up, striking out three, allowing two hits, and not letting a run to cross the plate.
The shutdown performance was necessary so that the Phillies could live off Cody Asche's two-run second inning home run for most of the game, and Buchanan left the game with a 1.69 ERA for spring training, allowing 12 hits in 16 innings with 11 strikeouts and again, zero walks.
It's a breath of fresh air to see a Phillies pitcher perform so well, with Cole Hamels getting rocked intermittently in his past two starts, Jerome WIlliams and Aaron Harang struggling with minor injuries, and Cliff Lee considering retirement. Maybe the Phillies won't have to turn to Roy Halladay for help after all.