As a lifelong Phan, you not only develop a numbness to losing important games, you also learn when a game is just plain unwinnable.
A major theory that I will put out there for a motivated number-cruncher to prove or disprove: The Phillies will lose when their opponent has a young rookie pitcher starting, even if the rookie is wild and struggling.
Case in point: Tonight, they lost to the Mets–who started Mike Pelfrey, a young and talented pitcher who has not performed well in the bigs. Young Mike was basically pitching for his job, as the Mets were very likely to replace him in the rotation if he didn’t show something good.
You could say this was just an isolated case, but I’ve seen this time and time again. Sure, the Phillies were missing Jimmy Rollins, but the Mets trotted out a lineup that included Angel Pagan in left and Damian Easley at second base (to go with their major stars).
I’ll dig around baseball-reference.com for a couple examples:
4/6/08 = Phils lose to Edinson Volquez (CIN)
9/29/07 = Phils lose to Matt Chico (WAS)
9/11/07 = Phils lose to Franklin Morales (COL)
8/23/07 = Phils lose to Chad Billingsley (LAD)
OK, it’s late, but you get the point.