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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Comments

Jose Mesa had business being on the roster and proved it today. Who do you blame for this catastrophe? Trevor Hoffman and the rest of the San Diego Padres, that's who.

Phil Sheridan observed that the April Phillies had re-emerged in October. I think that's the best way of putting it. They look like the team that got outplayed in all facets at the beginning of the season.

Jason, I understand that if you boil it down, it's all about us being out-played. But Manuel blew it on multiple counts today, not only by pulling Kendrick early but also doing his usual crap by not thinking in advance that the quick hook would force him to use either Mesa, Condrey or Alf, each of whom could be lit up like a Christmas tree. He went with the worst choice first, Mesa, and that put it completely out of reach. He tripped all over himself today and doesn't deserve to be let off the hook for it.

That being said, foolishly I am not giving up hope. The offense showed some signs of life at the end there. I like having a veteran on the mound for Saturday night. And it's baseball: just take it one game at a time. They can do this. It just isn't very likely at this point.

Just don't get swept. All we need is the country saying the Phillies didn't deserve to be in the playoffs. On the other hand, the markdowns on the NL East Champions gear should be substantial.

I forget by how much, but I remember in BBTN they showed how simply getting to the playoffs increases a team's income a significant amount. Considering there was also increased attendance, I hope the payroll goes up... but for who?

Manuel most definitely deserves some of the blame. He made a number of head scratching moves today. I still would like to see what someone else could do with this team. If we are swept, that becomes even more of a priority, at least to me.

3 in a row sounds almost hopeless, but 1 game at a time doesn't. It's bad, but it isn't over.

crazy/depressing game to be at. full of ups and downs early on followed by down down down.

my opinion on the game: kendrick has earned the chance to get out of his own jams at this point, especially with a lead and with 2 outs. going to lohse there...a flyball pitcher for the most part....and knowing he was 4th to bat next inning was a mistake in my opinion...if you were gonna replace him, go with someone who could maybe get a K and then you PH...

that slam sucked the life out everyone there...and then jose mesa....upsetting.

i'm not saying charlie lost the game today...i think the rockies won it on their own terms fair and square...but he didn't help.

I was gonnas post something to this effect before the playoffs began, but didn't want to be a downer, or focus on the negatives... but next year is clearly the Phillies' year. While I do still believe they can take a couple in Colorado and make a series out of it, I also think that they've already accomplished alot against tremendous odds, and have set themselves up very nicely for next season.
This core group is getting a feel for pressure of the playoffs now, and there's no way next season will have as many injuries to key starters or as much disarray in the bullpen.

I'm still rooting hard for the Phightins this series, but also want to remain positive about what this season meant even if they do lose.

I'm sorry, but my same summing up of this season continues today - if the team has the guts to fire Manuel and Dubee and bring in a proven commodity in each of those positions, the sky is the limit. There was no reason to pull Kendrick at that point, and now let's say we win on Saturday - who the heck is pitching Game 4 and 5 - no forward thinking or planning. Davey Lopes for manager!

I know Lopes is not a proven commodity as a manager, but he is one in relation to successfully managing an aspect of this team.

On a positive note - I love the new banner, "National League Eastern Division Champions" Weitzel, and I hope to see it until at least next September 30, and hopefully beyond....

"i think the rockies won it on their own terms fair and square."

That's all I'm trying to say.

You can question the moves with Mesa and Lohse. To me, he was going to go with Lohse anyway; Kendrick was at the end and had given up the double to Matsui earlier.

Mesa would not have been my first choice and maybe you have a point. This was the inning I missed between home and work and Chinese food, so I avoided the true impact.

I kinda feel like the Rockies are good enough and hot enough to keep adding runs off anyone in our bullpen.

Besides going to Mesa today up 6-3, I don't have a problem with any of the moves Cholly has made. The players just haven't executed.

One thing that has been generally totally overlooked is that the Rockies have had better scouting and made better adjustments than the Phils.

Here is an interesting analysis by Josh Kalk
at Hardball times:

"He got Phillies batters off balance by throwing more curveballs than he normally throws and throwing some change-ups in fastball counts. Francis did a very good job of keeping the ball down and got a good amount of swings and misses at balls out of the zone.

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/article/a-closer-look-at-jeff-francis-start-against-the-phillies/

It also continued today and I can believe more people haven't hammered Ruiz for calling for an inside fastball to Matsui on a 1-2 count. Why give a fastball hitter his favorite pitch (even if it is high)? Just a terrible decision and poor scouting.

MAN U GUYS HAVE NO BUSSINES BEING IN THE PLAYOFFS WHAT A BUNCH OF BUMS THE WHOLE CITY OF PHILY YOU GUYS CANT WIN ANYTHING CAN YOU THANKS FOR GIVING US A NICE EASY WALK INTO THE NLCS WHAT A BUNCH OF TRASH THE FIGHTING PHILS HA YOU GUYS SUCK AND AS FOR NEXT YEAR WITH YOUR MGR FORGET U WONT EVEN GET THE WILDCARD

Was that where Ruiz set up? If that's the case, he deserves all the blame. I though he was setup high.

Do I need to rewrite my whole post dangit?

The players like Charlie too much. Seems like a change would cause problems for a team with great chemistry. Why not try to actually get some decent pitchers for the bullpen? I think that would significantly cut down on Charlie's "mistakes." Seriously, Jose Mesa and Antonio Alfonseca are on the Phillies. It's 2007, not 1997. It's a total disgrace. I just hate to think that they wasted this year of tremendous offense from Rollins, Rowand, Pat ver 2.0, and Utley pre-injury.

Big talk from a team with 3 playoff game wins in their history. The Phils are not done and will win Saturday in Colorado where they already showed they are better men than the Rockies, who were scared like little girls while the real men helped saved the lives of their ground crew.

JW - Ruiz did set up high but he wasn't standing. The bigger issue was that Ruiz still called for an inside pitch after Lohse had just thrown 3 straight breaking balls down and low.

Matsui drilled that 1-1 breaking ball down the line and it was barely foul. Lohse missed the 1-2 fastball by 2 feet and it ended up in almost the exact same spot as the 1-1 pitch that Matsui had just smoked foul. Grand slam and game over.

It was absurd that Ruiz did go either go high and outside with a fastball or give Matsui a breaking ball away. They had Matsui buried in the count 1-2 and could have burned a bit. Just horrendous decisions all around.

OK SO THE SILLYS ARE GOOD AT SOMETHING MAYBE THEY SHOULD BECOME THE NEW GROUND CREW AT THAT PLACE U CALL A BALL PARK WHAT A DUMP THE CITY OF PHILLY SMELLY AND DIRTY GLAD I LIVE HERE IN BEAUTIFUL COLO WHERE ITS NICE AND CLEAN AND PEOPLE RESPECT EACH OTHER UNLIKE IN PHILLY U GUYS ARE GOING 3 AND OUT U HAVE NO BUSINESS BEING IN THE POST SEASON LUCKY THE METS COLAPSED U SHOULD BE HOME PLAYING WITH UR TOYS LITTLE BOY

I've been lurking on Beerleaguer for about 100 games, finally moved to post.

The offense (ex-Rollins) has been flaccid (phlaccid?)

I'm also pissed at Cholly for taking KK out. Why? And for Lohse. Can't expect a starter to come in with bases loaded and perform like a reliever.

But the biggest blame -- in my mind -- goes to management for failing to provide quality pitching. Hell, I'd settle for near-quality pitching. Off season acquisitions were a joke. J. C. Romero has been great, but other additions have been largely terrible.

Here's my desperate theory: Cholly put Mesa in today expecting him to get bombed. It was an attempt to draw attention to his crappy bullpen choices -- and shame upper management into giving the Phils something better next year. Come on -- we have an infield for the ages and the pitching squad of a cellar dweller. It's like we have a sports car but put whatever crappy pair of tires on it they could find.

Thanks to Weitzel & everyone else for a great place to gather (especially for us out-of-towners.) Hope the season isn't over, but...

One of the benefits of watching the game on MLB.com's Hot Corner centerfield camera, is that after the game, you can watch to post game press conference on a different camera with sound. After yesterday's game Clint Hurdle talked about their approach on hitting Hamel's pitching due to scouting. That's how they scored those 3 runs off Cole. Absolutely, they had better planning against the Phillies than Gillick's G-Men could get on the Rocks.

I didn't realize there was a new thread. This was the last post I made on the previous thread:

Again on the Houston sports station, they were talking during the game about acquiring Aaron Rowand and they cited his former dealings with Ed Wade as a possible connection. I thought Gillick made the Thome deal with Chicago to acquire Aaron. They were talking about an outfield upgrade over Luke Scott. That would mean Hunter Pence would move to RF in that scenario.

Mike - I agree. Many of Charlie's mistakes are only worsened by the horror that is the Phillies bullpen. Not to mention that the Phils had a game 2 starter who began the year in AA. I don't know how I feel about whether or not he should be back, which may be the nicest place to be as a fan.

Lake Fred - that sounds like pure speculation.

Nice job representing the NL East Philly Phonies. Next year there will be no gift wrapped division titles. You blew it, losers.

Sincerely,

The Chokers

All these genuinely retarded interlopers just give me a greater appreciation for the quality of discourse on Beerleaguer. I'm glad all the regular commenters seem to understand the use of caps lock and punctuation. I'm still not ready to count this team out. How many times have they shocked us this season? Keep talking trash allegedly Rockies fans. Ask Mets fans how that worked out this year.

Outplayed and outmanaged. The big difference I see is that when the younger players on the Rockies are getting spooked, the Phils are not cutting open the wounds. I know Rollins triples him in later, but the fact that Helms is not rushing home on Kendrick's grounder is pathetic. On the other hand, the Rockies are staying patient and calm and sinking the dagger deeper. They deserve to be where they are. My boys should be about 20 when the Phils get back to the playoffs next time. I just hope that when that time comes we can actually enjoy the games in primetime.

Lake Fred - Gillick started on November 2nd. The Thome/Rowand trade was on the 23rd. It was one of his first moves. Those guys are just yapping, not that it couldn't happen.

Wade has no 'former dealings' with Rowand. Why would Rowand want to go to a loser like Houston, anyway?

Jason: Ruiz was definitely set up inside on Matsui. That apparently was their ill-advised game plan on him, and they were determined to stick with it. Ruiz came through with a long double in the second inning, but he didn't work well with either Hamels yesterday or Kendrick today. He has some good qualities but his overall game needs a lot of work. He's tough behind the plate but not a good pitch-caller or handler of pitchers. That has come prominently into play with two 23 year-olds starting these first two playoff games.

A little nauseating watching the Indians exciting their home crowd. This was how it was supposed to be, we thought.

as much as the sad rockies fans (that need to linger around this website and speak behind a keyboard when they don't have to man up) want you to believe, this series isn't over. strange things happen in baseball...

"but the fact that Helms is not rushing home on Kendrick's grounder is pathetic."

Glad someone pointed that out, and great post, OR.

The Mets fans are still here? Wow.

i wouldn't have used mesa period...but he walked the first 2 guys he faced. if charlie was going to use mesa there, condrey needed to be ready to go THEN. everyone in the stands wanted a quick hook.

speaking of the crowd today..i have to say the first 2 innings was AWESOME. electric crowd. everyone was sensing a win even down 2-1 after jimmy's bomb. but ... i hate to say this about the philly fans there today...what a bunch of front-running jackasses! they get down 10-4 and the place just emptied out! the people next to use left in the 6th inning, and there was a steady exit stream from then on. it's a playoff game, first in 14 years...win or lose, you have to stick it out until the end, especially with an offense our kind of scoring potential. very disappointed in that.

Wouldn't mind seeing Sabathia in a Phils uniform, though

Not sure if this was brought up already, but why isn't Chris Coste pinch hitting for Ruiz with bases loaded?

i wouldn't have PH coste there, tom. carlos was hitting the ball hard, he looked pretty good up there from where i was.

From cb's post, I feel like he has some insider information.

Was at the game today. It was a pretty miserable experience, actually. I had the (dis)pleasure of sitting next to a loud and vocal negadelphian who would not shut up during the course of the game and was glad he left in 7th.

Anyway, I think on the whole, the taking of Kendrick out of the game was the RIGHT move at the time. Kendrick was only getting a few groundball outs and never looked very effective. Rockies batters were line-driving the ball all over the place. People who criticize Charlie for taking out Kendrick forget that Kaz's last at bat was rope that hit the LukeOil advertisement out in the deepest part of the park. So when Lohse was brought it, I think it was the correct move.

That being said, Lohse HAS to bat in the bottom of the fifth instead of bringing in Mesa/Condrey/Alfonseca. Charlie should have known that bringing in either one of these three is effectively ending the game. You either have two choices 1) keep Lohse in or 2) bring in the good part of the bullpen. Neither option was done, hence, a defeat.

There is still Saturday. Hopefully, Moyer can right the ship and get the guys going in the right direction. There's no need for anyone on this board to get critically frustrated. I know I didn't enjoy watching today's game - they looked unlike the team I saw last week. Let's hope for the best in Colorado.

plus, you needed coste to hit for the pitcher (unelss you wanted nunez for that??)

Ruiz has been hitting well. I wouldn't have taken him out for Coste.

jhart, what i was saying was...i would have given kendrick a chance there. but if you were going to pull kendrick there, i would have put in alfonseca and hoped for a K or a groundball out. then you PH for alf the next inning since that spot was 4th up (they went down 1-2-3 and it didn't matter but at the time it would have been a good plan).

I hope the Indians go all the way if the Phillies don't pull off a miracle. The Angels can't have another this soon, and the Sox and Yanks have many more bullsh*t bandwagon fans than I can stomach. D-backs are the same as the Angels; too soon. The Cubs need to lose so I don't feel as bad. Needless to say, I'm also pretty sick of this Rockies roll, not to mention their total lack of interesting personalities. I wonder how many people could actually tell Holliday, Hawpe, Atkins, and Tulowitzki apart in a police lineup.

P.S. Jesus doesn't care about baseball.

couldn't agree more with jhart and bathtub. i ended previous discussion with the same comment. it's one thing to say it's wrong at the time, but another to say it's wrong after the fact. should have had lohse pitch deep or not pulled lohse. if it was only an inning and change you were looking for, maybe even romero at that point, but hindsight is easy...

Mike, I'm also rooting for the Tribe. I've always sensed a certain gritty, blue-collar kinship between Cleveland and Philadelphia.

hippo, I hope your guinea pig isn't too depressed.

pulled kendrick, i mean...

I've been lurking on beerleaguer for a couple of seasons now, posted a few times, and I wanted to quickly address The Choker's Gift and other similarly inspired Mutts fans. I've lived in NYC for 10 years now wearing a Phils Birds or Flyers hat every single day, and never have I felt the sort of glares I have felt for the last few days walking these streets. They're still incredibly bitter that the better team won the race in the end and can only take solace in piling on us. Unfortunately, I'm beginning to wonder if the better team is also 2/3 of the way to winning this NLDS. Go Phils and keep up the amazingly intelligent, insightful conversation I've come to rely on here on BL.

bathtubhippo - I don't have a problem with Alfo, on principle, but over this past month I feel like he's been the worst of the worst when it came to choosing between those three guys. (no stats to back that up).

I don't know for certain but I think Charlie just had an idea stuck in his head that he was going to go to Lohse in any event where Hamels or Kendrick didn't get the job done. I'm ok with that idea. But then you have to keep that starter in and let him hit so you get 3-4 innings and effectively bypass the soft middle relief that we have.

Wow, I completely forgot about Helms' lack of hustle due to the fact that J-Roll came through (again) and drove him in anyway. Not only should he have arguably scored on Ruiz's double, but what the hell was he doing on Kendrick's swinging bunt? It was placed perfectly. John Madden could've gotten home with a piano on his back. Was Smith holding him?

And is that an actual Rockies fan, or a Mets fan posing as a Rockies fan? I just can't imagine a Rockies fan is actually on here talking trash; I keep picturing Owen Wilson poking Ben Stiller in the eye in 'Night at the Museum.' Go suck on a Coors bottle, little man. I'd rather drink gasoline.

If the Rockies do beat the Phils, I am rooting for them. I like the way they play and they clearly fit the underdog label.

As for the AL, I am rooting for a Sox-Yanks series. I know it is cliched but the '03 and '04 ALCS between these teams were great theatre. Always seem to be full of twist and turns.

One thing that has surprised me in this series is the absolute inconsistency in the ball/strike calls.

Posted by: clout | Thursday, October 04, 2007 at 06:19 PM

---

read my mind.

"but the fact that Helms is not rushing home on Kendrick's grounder is pathetic."

Glad someone pointed that out, and great post, OR.

Actually, Helms had a terrible lead on that play and it might have been a closer play at home than people think.

Plus, if I recall right didn't M-V-P drive Helms and Ruiz in with the very next AB?

Kind of a pointless play to criticize.

i truly think the phils can take the next three. will they? i don't know.
i too was at the game and had to sit in front of a few miserable people who know nothing about sports at all but will yelp about how bad everything is and how they are victims. boo hoo. no team owes you anything. when you choose to follow a team or attend a game you understand that it is a competition that may not work out as you had hoped.
that said, pulling kendrick that early was a bad idea. i agree that lohse was the guy to use, but did manual think the game was 6 inning today? what was the plan for the rest of the day? the bullpen is the worst part of the team and maual was in a rush to use it today.
i have a few questions for those who saw the game on tv. was the home plate umpire really all over the place or was it just a bad angle for me? could you hear the "mesa sucks" chant on tv and did the announcers comment on it if you could?
anyway go phils, win sat.

hippo, I hope your guinea pig isn't too depressed.

Posted by: RSB | Thursday, October 04, 2007 at 09:04 PM

---

he's a little down, but i gave him a peanut butter snack treat and he has forgotten about the game for now. if only we had attention spans that short....

one game at a time... win 2 straight, force a home game 5 anything can happen.... GO PHILS!

Please no more Sox-Yanks. It hasn't been fun in years, since the Sox decided they were Yankees, Jr. Is there anything more obnoxious than the whole Red Sox Nation business?

MG: I think the criticism is actually the small lead there and the passive approach. The original poster I quoted did mention the run was driven home anyway, as you noted.

Do we even need to talk about the f-ups of Wes Helms? It kind of goes without saying. And he's under contract for another year! Wooo!

Concerning the baserunning of Helms:

On the double by Ruiz: This ball was hit far, no doubt. It even hit the wall. However, both my father and I were surprised that Spilborghs didn't catch the ball. He appeared to track it down pretty cleanly and then almost give up at the end, perhaps sensing that he might crush his nose like Rowand did last season. As a result, I do not think this was an error on Helms running. He had to make sure CF didn't make an out on that play.

Groundball of J-Roll: This ball was hit softly to Kaz. I have to think that Helms was told to hold up on a sharply hit groundball and that he misread it as being hit too hard. The problem with Helms is because he is so slow he has to go with his first instinct, and in this episode his first instinct was wrong.

Edit the groundball was hit by Kendrick, not J-Roll.

It's kind of hard to rule the Phillies out considering what they just accomplished in September, coming from 7 games out in the middle of the month. I know it's not really the same, but still. That effectively drove home the point that anything really can happen, and if any team knows it, it's this one. And the Rockies will be throwing some weak pitchers against the Phils at Coors. I can almost guarantee they'll play better on the road than they did at home.

jhart - I thought the same on the Ruiz double. Was that even an issue, though? I thought most people were more concerned with the Kendrick GB that he didn't head for home on. In any case, the run came home. It was Kendrick's shaky start and the middle relief that lost this game. The offense was actually very good. The Phils scored 5 and had good chances in the 8th and 9th. The new lineup was much better.

I'm remembering back a few days ago, before the wild card was decided, everyone pretty much said they wanted the Padres and wanted no parts of the Rockies. Colorado has now gone 16-1 in their last 17 games, including these last two. I have not given up hope but sometimes in sports you run into a hot team or a hot pitcher or, in hockey, a hot goalie and they get the better of you. Players and teams can also cool off in a hurry and the momentum can shift without warning and for no apparent reason. This is why my favorite saying in sports is, "That's why they play them."

maybe i am late, but everyone see where the rox are giving a share of the playoff winnings to the widow of the minor league first base coach that was struck by the ball. a very nice gesture, but ugh, now i got that going against me...

If my favorite team wasn't the Phillies I'd probably call back my stupid Yankees friend who left me a smartass voicemail after today's game.

Is the Mesa move worth as much criticism as it's getting? He came in down 6-3. They lost 10-5. Should we be glad the better arms were spared?

Anyone care to comment on Rowand's afternoon at the plate? 0-4, two strikeouts. And Werth? He didn't do anything subbing in place of Victorino. Ruiz left the bases loaded. The bottom of the lineup wasn't so hot today ...

Two observations from the CLE/NY game:

1) Kenny Lofton can still play a little.
2) I have never heard a network broadcaster root so openly as Chip Caray is for Cleveland. It sounds like an Indians telecast.

Jason, Mesa transformed the game from something reachable to a blowout. That's a big deal. It was 10-3 by the time he and Condrey were done stinking up the joint.

P.S. Helms is probably the slowest and worst overall baserunner on the team. It literally looks like slo mo when he is actually running at, what is for him, full speed. I am very upset about the 3rd base situation this year. It bothers me a lot. Such an important position and we have one who is all glove, no hit, another who is all hit, no glove and one who is ok glove, mediocre hit, can't run. The situation totally stinks. Too bad Rowand can't play there, eh?

Maybe someone mentioned this. I was in front of the tv, not my computer, so I didn't read all the game posts. But, in addition to the decision to remove Kendrick, I also thought it was an odd decision to intentionally walk the weak-hitting Torrealba in that fateful 4th inning. Kendrick went 3-1 on him & then a decision was made to just walk him to get to the pitcher's spot -- which anyone in his right mind would have known was going to result in a pinch hitter.

The Phillies' season-long weaknesses all reared their heads in this game. Kendrick was a saviour for us this year but the bottom line is that, on a good pitching staff, he wouldn't be starting Game 2 of the NLDS. Removing him & bringing in a cold pitcher with the bases loaded was not the brightest move in the world. But Kendrick hadn't exactly pitched well up to that point.

Jason - Agreed to some extent that Mesa was not the critical factor of the game, and that he probably shouldn't get the blame that has been heaped upon him. However, he does symbolize the overall problem of the bullpen - old hand veterans that were prime closers 7 to 10 years ago. Being at the park today and watching him trot out onto the hill was the equivalent of raising the white flag. Of his first 15 pitches 10 were balls.

I just have to believe that when the players saw him come out, they immediately started to work some algebraic formula in their heads trying to figure out how many more runs they would need to score during the night.

lol jhart -- the very thought of ballplayers running algebraic formulas as you describe it is just too funny!

Bay Area - I was ok with walking Yorvit. Guy has some pop in the bat and had hit well in game 1. Maybe I'm the only one, but I was a little surprised they brought on a PH in the third. Minus JRoll, nobody on our team was hitting the ball effectively against Morales.

Hurdle really made the call of the game there. But let's not kid ourselves, Kendrick "got" Smith - it was a swinging bunt that just died on the third base line. We were unlucky there.

As far as the Sox-Yanks match up. Until baseball (I know it will never happen) has a cap rule, any team that spends inordinate amounts of money, in some cases 2x or 3x more than the small market teams can, will never get my rooting interest. I find this to be the biggest problem with baseball. It makes it tough to get too excited. There is nothing better in sports than to see David slay Goliath. Unfortunatley, teams like the Yankees make the playoffs for 13 straight years by spending the most money. Damn, I wish the Phillies would open their purse strings. Then I could throw that logic/reasoning out the window! Until they do (when pigs fly), I will complain about the unfairness of it all. Hey, at least I'm honest.

Re: the Helms situation... let me clear somet stuff up...

1. Helms had to hold up at second because it was possible that the ball was going to be caught. Even though the ball was hit deep the CF made a great play to get close. it was backed up nicely by the RF (I am no longer speakng the names of Rockies players.) Helms couldn't score.

2. Yes Kendrick's ball was softly hit. But Helms was NOT going on contact. WHY? Because Jimmy ROLLINS was up next. If the pitcher or 8 hole hitter was coming up you can risk going on contact with a slow runner like Helms. Even IF Helms had a better lead... the 2B attacked the ball as if he was coming HOME with the ball. He positioned his body to make the play at home. You can't make the second out at home.

Regarding Kendrick being pulled... The Phillies MGR (I'm not speaking his name either) forced his OWN hand 2 batters before, when he walked the 8 HOLE hitter to bring up the PITCHERS spot. From my vantage point I could see that the Rockies had a guy throwing in the bullpen... If #41 didn't know the Rockies Manager was going to hit for the Pitcher, that's just a shame... Now you have first and second... a cheap infield single gets you bases loaded and #41 panicked. If you are going to use Lohse, you bring him to start an inning and send him out for 3. Not to SHUT a guy down. That was Geary's SPOT (sad to say I know.) But you need a one OUT type of guy there... The Red Devil failed to do his job there...

I'd rather not discuss the rest of the game... I'm still sick to my stomach...

I had a single seat to both games (away from my buddies) so I was forced to sit next to people BOTH days... who needed to ANALYZE EVERY PITCH. WOULDN"T SHUT
THE
F(*&*(& UP...

Sorry... I might be better tomorrow.

Mike C - I agree with your take on the Kendrick pull. Since Geary's not on the roster, who should they have used there (if not Kendrick)?

I agree with RSB. Before Mesa came in, we were down but not out. Mesa put the nail in our coffin. I'm no bruceg, & I stick with the games for as long as I think there's even a plausible chance of coming back. But I shut it off & left after Mesa allowed those 2 runs. At that point, it was over beyond a reasonable doubt.

Still, it's somewhat misdirected to blame Cholly for bringing in Mesa. It was awfully early to go to Romero or Gordon. If not Mesa, it would have been Condrey or Alfonseca, who are just as bad, if not worse. The lesson is: you can't get by on a 3-man bullpen.

I do, however, blame Cholly for bringing in Lohse. If Kendrick had been allowed to finish the inning, this whole discussion about Mesa might have never happened.

Mike C, you make a good point about Rollins coming up instead of the pitcher, but I still hold to the intent of my initial post. I would rather see the second out at home then to go home in three feeling like I never threw a punch.

^ I know Geary is not on the roster... I'm just saying that's his usual role.

@Sophist -- it's an excellent point... I don't even know who you trust in that spot? If it was before the debacle we saw later... I might have used Mesa or Condrey... but not Lohse. #41 set him up to fail.

I would have left Kendrick in personally. And because he GOT the PH, I would have had him pitch to the Rockies Leadoff batter (even though he tagged him earlier.)

@OR Phan -- I understand your thought process... I do. I personally hate the CONTACT play... because more often than not... you are not beating the infield in...

Jhart: They weren't getting a lot of hits off Morales, but they were starting to sting the ball, plus he was all over the place with his pitches. The Rockies already had guys throwing in the pen the previous inning, so I never had a doubt in my mind they would pinch hit. In fact, I recall thinking that the Phillies should have pitched to Torrealba because, among other things, if they got him out, it would force the Rockies to bring back an ineffective Morales for another inning.

I guess they opted for the walk because they didn't want Kendrick to throw a fat fastball over the plate. But, by that logic, you would intentionally walk any hitter whenever there are men on base & you get a 3-1 count. Torrealba is not without some pop, but he's about the 7th best bat in the Rockies' starting lineup. I think you have to challenge him in that situation.

I know it's been pointed out on this site before that Geary has an uncanny resemblence to John Wilkes Booth. Well, today, the Rockies were the bullit, and the Phillies were Honest Abe.

b_a_p -- It may not be the use of Mesa in that inning that kills me, but the situation that allows his appearance to arise, starting from his signing, his placement on the 25-man roster, and Kendrick's removal for Lohse with the bases loaded. The last one especially is where the blame would be placed on Manuel.

But you're right. The first two have less to do with in-game management, and more to do with weaknesses on this team.

You know, it's still going to hurt when/if they eventually go down, and I still want to see them at least make this an interesting series...

But. We played our asses off when it counted in September and we humiliated--HUMILIATED--the Mets. Endured their 161 days of Billy Wagner's grousing and Paul Lo Duca's bitching and Jose Reyes' premature coronation and then made it all WORTHLESS for them. When Myers closed out that game it felt like we'd already taken the top prize. I said it then and I say it again, anything beyond that glorious sunday afternoon is icing on the cake.

While the Mets are reeling with their off-season woes--a clueless manager, decrepit players earning long and exorbitant contracts, etc--the Phillies are in a position to free up major payroll, get healthy, add a few key members to the pitching staff come back stronger and healthier than they were at any point during this whole season.

I can't wait for April, but first let's enjoy the fact that right now Paul Lo Duca is sitting at home in Connecticut trying to think of ways to win back his Playboy model ex-wife while we watch the first Phillies playoff team of the post-Soundgarden era first. Go Phils!

well said in the final thoughts section

Bay Area - Good point about the relief. From where I was sitting, I couldn't make out the bullpen areas. As for stinging the ball, JRoll obviously yes, but besides that all I could remember at the time was Ruiz's double. My assumption was that they would indeed keep Morales in to hit. I didn't know Fogg was warming, which makes your posts sound.

BAP: The intentional walk to Torrealba was mentioned briefly on the earlier thread. I too think that was a mistake and since it indirectly led to KK's removal, a game-changing mistake. Those who say KK should've been lifted because he was getting hit, apparently weren't watching the 4th inning. He looked better in that inning than he did before. He was removed because an intentional walk was followed by a little bleeder, which was pure bad luck.

You know, it's still going to hurt when/if they eventually go down, and I still want to see them at least make this an interesting series...

But. We played our asses off when it counted in September and we humiliated--HUMILIATED--the Mets. Endured their 161 days of Billy Wagner's grousing and Paul Lo Duca's bitching and Jose Reyes' premature coronation and then made it all WORTHLESS for them. When Myers closed out that game it felt like we'd already taken the top prize. I said it then and I say it again, anything beyond that glorious sunday afternoon is icing on the cake.

While the Mets are reeling with their off-season woes--a clueless manager, decrepit players earning long and exorbitant contracts, etc--the Phillies are in a position to free up major payroll, get healthy, add a few key members to the pitching staff come back stronger and healthier than they were at any point during this whole season.

I can't wait for April, but first let's enjoy the fact that right now Paul Lo Duca is sitting at home in Connecticut trying to think of ways to win back his Playboy model ex-wife while we watch the first Phillies playoff team of the post-Soundgarden era first. Go Phils!

Obviously a team never wants to go down 0-2. Maybe now that for the first time in 4 weeks the Rockies are not in a must-win position, they might happen to relax a bit and the Phils could be able to jump on them. The Rockies still have to close this thing. I would not be surprised to see the Phils comeback. They have done it all year in the bizarre circumstances. Let's just focus on winning Game 3.

The most obvious BAD move today was bringing in Lohse to pitch with the bases loaded. Someone forgot to point out to Cholly that he could be USED in relief, not used as a relief pitcher. There is a huge difference. Then compounding the bubble head move, the bobble head then yanks him instead of letting him pitch at least 2 or 3 innings. I would have let Alf or Mesa done the pitching to a single batter, as crazy as that sounds, because they have done it before. I think Cholly just got all mixed up, sort of the way he does speaking to the press after games.

Just checking in. Bad couple days.

The silver lining on the cloud is that it should now be apparent that not getting any quality (or even any mediocre) relief pitching in the off-season last year was a fatal mistake. It should be apparent that it will be a mistake for next year if it happens too.

Please note that if there were two more reliable relievers, Lohse would not have been in there, and he would have been abailable to pitch tomorrow. Note as well, that if a closer had been acquired, Myers would have been the starter and Kendrick would, at highest, been the third starter.

All Gillick had to do was do what we said he was going to do over the winter. He failed and now we're one game away from elimination.

Incidently, it's interesting to me that there's another Andy in the five boroughs - though clearly not in mine. Howdy.

Mr. Mac - Agreed, in the sense that Charlie had a pre-set idea of putting in Lohse immediately if either Hamels or Kendrick faltered and would not change that plan. Bringing in Lohse was ok, but then you need to keep him in until you could bridge Gordon, Romero, and Myers.

Exactly jhart. He was there as a long reliever if needed. Not as a one out guy. He was enamored with the idea that there was a sort of new toy out there in the bullpen, and he couldn't wait to show everyone. It was a new twist for him, and he wanted to prove that he knew how to use it. One problem...he didn't. Sort of like his righty/lefty affection and the over used double switch. I guess you could say, Cholly broke his new toy.

I didn't have a problem with using Lohse in relief. I had a problem with the timing, and having more time to think about it, I still feel it was too early. A couple of hard hit balls in the 4th inning is not a reason to pull a pitcher. OK, Phils, one at a time!! You can do it!

Cacks - I'm glad you didn't slit your wrists down there in sunny Florida. You make a good point. If ever there was a time for a letdown by the Rox, it would be now. If not, they could be keeping the pedal to the metal all the way to the WS.

Look, the Rox are going to take Moyer apart Sat., but that shouldn't take anything away from the season these guys had. They won a title with perhaps the worst pitching staff in baseball, maybe a half dozen bona fide major leaguers plus a bunch of overachievers, injuries galore, and the dumbest manager in the game. It was an incredible ride.

Well, I'm out for the night. Let's see what Uncle Moyer can do on Saturday. I'm still optimistic, the team has their collective backs against the wall - so we got them right where we want them.

No matter where and when we finish this season, I'm sure this will be one of the games we'll talk about when we need to think about re-tooling for the next year.

Kendrick wasn't at his sharpest today. He was falling behind in a lot of counts & getting himself into a lot of jams. But removing him was a real head-scratcher. Kendrick's been getting himself out of jams all year. Why would Cholly think that a cold pitcher, who is used to starting, would have a better chance of getting himself out of that mess than Kendrick? Not to mention that the pitcher was due up 4th the next inning, which meant that, if you remove Kendrick, you're either going to let Lohse hit or remove him for a pinch hitter -- thus paving the way for one of our 3 horrible relievers to enter the game.

Nice to see the Yankees lose.

Is it just me or does TBS only show that pitch tracker graphic whenever the Rox get a bad call? Maybe I'm biased, or maybe it's because I only saw the second half of each game, but there were multiple Philly at bats I was interested in seeing at least a replay.

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