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Monday, August 18, 2008


It's the concurrent injury to Dobbs that has made Feliz' injury especially harmful. If a healthy Dobbs starts all those games against RHP it's very possible the offense wouldn't have missed Feliz. But without Dobbs, and Bruntlett being awful even for his standards, the Phils somehow missed Feliz.

Pete Happy walked yesterday?

No way in hell is he healthy.

It's the manager, too. He views third base as a position where defense is mission critical.

True, JW. I was interpreting Manuel's early moves to start Bruntlett over Dobbs in good faith -- that he did so bc Dobbs was injured and not due to some misguided belief in the importance of defense at 3B.

Interesting hit just now in the Mets gamed. Jack Wilson, I think, reached out and knocked a pitch-out attempt into RF for a base hit.

It's a sad state of affairs when we are pinning our offensive hopes to Pedro Feliz.

yeah, unless Feliz comes back hitting .300 its not going to change too much.

Hopefully Burrell is in one of his turbo zones now. He missed a HR by 2' on Saturday night. Last night's HR was impressive, but that base hit was sick. He hit a cheek high pitch with total authority into CF. It wasn't pretty, but damn was it impressive... no uppercut swing, no downward swing, just straight through the ball.

Parker: You mentioned last thread Kendrick not fitting well in a bullpen role in the postseason. I actually think he'd be great there. He's an ideal ROOGY(or more), which is a role I certainly think he'd be an upgrade over Clay Condrey in.

So much for an off day:

With the Phillies off on Monday, Howard will be at the Little League World Series. He'll be working with Subway, reminding kids the benefits of being active and staying and eating healthy.

Hopefully he doesn't step into the box against any of those 12 year old lefties...striking out against them could really wreck his confidence.

I'm all for getting Pedro Feliz back. He'll help create lineup stability that carries this team into the playoffs. I really think we're going to witness the "turn around" starting this week we've all so desperately been waiting for.

So did anyone hear Howard on ESPN radio? I don't think he actually has come on yet.

Hoepfully after the LLWS, Howard goes to another event sponsored by Pearle Vision, reminding kids (and himself) of the importance of vision correction.

*Hopefully. D'oh.

TK- the ESPN Chat page says that his plane was delayed and the Chat's been rescheduled to 3:45, so I'm sure that affected his radio apperance also.

Replacing Taguchi's or Bruntlett's roster spot...Kendrick vs. Happ vs. Condrey...etc. All of these are insignificant fringe moves. No significant moves are happening.
The core of the lineup is not producing, and is not going to be altered. Either it turns around and wins the division, or it doesn't.

Pirates just took the lead over the Mets in the bottom of the 8th with the bases loaded still and one out. Hopefully the Pirates can tack on and take this one.

Make that 5-2 thanks to Jack Wilson. The Mets bullpen erupts again!

Campaign Cheer allows for the cheering of teams opposing the Mets and/or Marlins. In which case, Go Buccos!!!

Brian G: The shocking truth (might be to some) with Kendrick is that his numbers against RH are getting worse. Regardless of the side of the plate, he is allowing almost a .300 BAA (.298 and rising).

Yes, the BAA against RH may be around .270, but there are less LH batters in baseball. The ugly truth is that Kendrick nibbles around the zone, and when he goes over the plate, he usually gets hammered. Almost every exception to the normal Kendrick appearance have come against very poor offensive teams, or have been the product of luck.

The concept of having a ROOGY on a playoff roster is not feasible. You simply cannot afford to have 3 guys that are basically only effective against hitters from one side of the plate. It is too taxing on the rest of the bullpen, and eventually will put the team in a position of having very unfavorable match-ups. If you have a guy that can get guys out on either side of the plate, he is much more valuable in the playoffs.

Curt Schilling on Everything-

"Kendrick would be an upgrade over Condrey"

I'm not so sure about this. In any event, there are any number of minor league pitchers that that statement could be applicable to.

Wow, last week we were talking about this inept offense is going to cost the Phils a playoff spot after the Dodgers sweep.

Now we're discussing where to put Kendrick when the Phils make the playoffs? Those were 6 powerful runs in the San Diego series.....

At least the Mets lost today. We've got to sweep this upcoming series. I will be there tomorrow night, anxious to see the reception the fans give Jimmy.

If I have anything to do with it, J-Roll will be getting a standing ovation for his 1st plate appearance of the game.


J-Roll is going to get demolished during his first AB tomorrow night. I would imagine that would be the end of it. It is absolutely imperative that they sweep the Nationals. The upcoming schedule is just brutal.

The Phillies gain ground by not playing. I smelled a Muts loss when they lifted Maine after he pitched 5 shutout innings. Their bullpen sucks so bad that their starters have to go longer than 5 innings.

I, too, am concerned about Kendrick, but with Eaton gone, Kendrick is no. 5. We don't need to place the weight of the worl on his young shoulders. We've got four older arms to do the heaving starting lifting.

carson - do you guys have giant "We're #2" finger signs?

It's always nice to see smart posts on Beerleaguer (kind of like finding a water hole in the desert) and my hat's off to Morty, Avery and lekh who (in the prior thread) actually seem to get it about what's wrong with Howard. His walks have fallen off a cliff. Interesting speculation on why that's happened, too. The shift, perhaps? Frustration? Was he told to be more aggressive? When he was going good he often seemed frustrated when he didn't get strikes. He may have had some success against bad pitches and that may have led to a downward spiral. Clearly, he is all messed up now, his pitch recognition is way off. He needs to go back to fundamentals: Recognizing when pitches are out of the strike zone and taking them, even if he walks 4 times a game. Until he does that, he will continue to struggle. Good posts guys.

Kind of interesting to see that what everyone thought was a strong point, our bench is actually mediocre at best with only Dobbs contributing. It boggle's the brain to think we have players in the minors that can outplay our bench players yet we refuse to bring them up due to monetary or other reasons.

Clout, I also think it's his squat. He looks off-balance and not happy to be at the plate. When he used to crouch, man, I'd be afraid for the ball he was about to murder.

MVP chants when Rollins is up at tomorrows game would be hilarious. We have to spread the word.

clout, any thoughts on why the shift would hurt Howard so badly? He seems to be most succeptible to K'ing on that low and away pitch. Instinct would tell me that if he could recognize that pitch (we all know its coming) and go with it the other way, there's no one there to field the ball. Sooner or later they'd have to either stop shifting, or stop pitching him away. Is that too simplistic?

Howard's participation at this ESPN chat is mimicking his 2008 season: absent.

WP: Someone suggested that the shift may be causing him to be overanxious, trying to do too much with it.

For some reason, every time I go to type a post about the shift, I have this tendency to accidentally omit the "F" from the word "shift." Eventually, I'm going to make this mistake and I'm not going to catch it -- leading to a rather embarrassing post. I'm just warning everyone in advance because one of these days it's going to happen.

And Howard definitely isn't alone in his overanxious approach. Rollins, Utley, Werth, Jenkins, Ruiz, even Victorino and Dobbs all seem like they're trying to hit 6 run home runs every at bat. Come to mention it, have we ever seen Chase hit so many weak pop-ups before? He's like Shane redux.

Gosh! Morty, Avery and lekh, you must be absolutely elated, hardly able to contain yourselves, and just brimming with pride to get such effusive praise from BeerLeaguer's own self-appointed

Great Arbiter of Smart Posts".

Clout - if that's the case I would hope the hitting coach would tell Howard to ignore the fielders, just focus on the picher, and hit the ball where it's pitched. And like others have said.. take more walks.

If PtB can make the adjustment over the last couple of years, I'm not ready to write off Howard just yet (although just slight signs of improvement would be welcome). If you remember, before PtB become a walk machine, he had some AB's so frustrating that it would make Howard look like he had Barry Bonds' batting eye.

AWH: Now, now, I've praised your posts in the past too. I'm just trying to be nice.

Isn't it great to see Clout already enacting Campaign Cheer!?!?!?

Howard learned a lesson from Jimmy:

Tim (Port St Lucie): Are the Phili fans really as bad as everyone talks about?

SportsNation Ryan Howard: (5:23 PM ET ) I think they get a bad rap. Are they passionate? Yes. Do they have a different way of showing it? Sometimes, but they're not nearly as bad as everyone makes them out to be.

NOT the right answer to this question:

Andrew (Philly, PA): I need to hear it from a players perspective why the Phillies offense has been struggling for the last couple months with all the fire power we have?

SportsNation Ryan Howard: (5:28 PM ET ) It's just baseball. There's things that happen in the game that you can't explain, but we're only a game and a half out right now. We'll hopefully come out of it sooner rather than later.

From Ken Rosenthal:

"The Phillies could be looking to add another catcher.

David Ross, placed on release waivers by the Reds on Monday, is drawing interest from Philadelphia according to major league sources.

The Philles could sign Ross as an immediate replacement for Carlos Ruiz. Or they could stay with Ruiz, send Ross to AAA, and summon Ross when rosters expand on September 1.

In 52 games this year, Ross is batting .231 but owns a robust .381 OBP.

Ruiz is batting .220 this year with a .322 OBP in 81 games"

This is encouraging. Howard picks out as his favorite player a guy who sabotaged his team bc he was unhappy that a contract he willingly signed and was paid $160 mil over the life of also had a couple options tacked on.

Chris (Philadelphia, PA): Ryan, your the man keep doin what your doin. I was wondering, whos your favorite player in the majors today whos not on the phillies?

Ryan Howard: (5:24 PM ET ) It's been fun watching Manny Ramirez doing what he's doing this year.

You bet Deutsche fan! Let's turn those frowns upside down everybody! The pitching, especially the bullpen, has been way better than any of us thought, the team is better positioned to make the playoffs this season than it was at this time last year and the offensive stars are so far below their career norms that the odds of a return of hittin' season are very, very good.

That's how I feel today. Check back with me after the upcoming series against the Dodgers, Mets, Cubs, Mets again, Marlins and Brewers. I could feel differently.

AWH: Haha, well done...

wilson: Ross is a pretty good defensive catcher who's got some HR power, but, sadly, is a .223 lifetime hitter. Still, he'd be an upgrade over Taguchi on the bench because of the power threat.

The Rosenthal report is an example of the limitations of national reporters. If Ross were added, he wouldn't replace Ruiz. He'd either be sent to the minors, or the Phillies would release Taguchi and carry three catchers.

Brian G: I see your problem with accuracy extends to other venues. Howard did not say Ramirez is his favorite player. He ignored the question, wisely, and simply said Ramirez has been fun to watch, obviously referring to Manny with the Dodgers. Hard to disagree with him.

AFish: My guess is that Ross would be signed for Lehigh and then join the big team on Sept. 1 when the rosters expand. I think that would be a good move.

Re: Ross -- so we're NOT looking for a bat to HELP us right now?

I understand that Ross is one of those standard, get a 3rd catcher on your team for the stretch run that nearly every team does. I'm okay with that.

This team needs another bat.


Not yesterday. Now.

Of course, they don't if Rollins returns to 06/07 norms. Utley returns to April Form. Burrell continues his 130 OPS+ pace and "Babe" Howard returns. then it won't matter what 6,7,8 do. Which I guess Pat G and the rest seem to be waiting on.

clout: Whoops. I should have been more careful with my wording, as I forgot you were also Chief of the Semantics Police.

In response to a question about who his favorite player was, he expressed appreciation for Manny Ramirez. I don't accuse Howard of having the sabotage in mind, but it's funny how quickly people ignore how dishonorably Ramirez acted. And I find it an interesting coincidence considering the impression of Howard having a giant contract on his mind.

@Brian G-- I'm all for conspiracy theories... but don't forget, Ryno had a front seat for Manny's team sweeping the Phils this week. My guess that answer is completely TOP of MIND.

Brian G: I'm guessing Howard was thinking about baseball, not contracts, since contracts were not the context in which the question was asked, nor the subject of the conversation. But whatever floats your boat.

I think I posted "why can't you recognize the outside breaking ball" 10 times on Howard's ESPN chat.

They opted to go with "what's your favorite color" instead. Go Figure.

Clout: How does one think about baseball and Manny and not think about the fact that he refused to play and played with only passing interest? How does a fellow player gloss over that even if they are only concerned with how the player has performed?

Good grief.

Well, Manny is batting .424/.514/.780 since joining the Dodgers. His OPS was 1.338 the series he played the Phils. I'd say the respect he received that week was towards the front of Howard's mind. He's also arguably the most HOF-worthy position player currently active.

we need a phils fight song for when the guys need us. instead of booing to show our emotion, we can SING!

Seeing Manny destroy NL pitching makes it easy to forget whatever he did that prevented the Red Sox from winning two World Series champsionships in the last few years.

Wait a second...

As frustrating as I find it to watch the Phillies this season, I have to say that these off-days are really boring.

The Dodgers just traded for Greg Maddux.

Not so boring anymore, is it bap?!?!?

If only ESPN made as big a deal about the trade of an aging superstar like Maddux as they did with Brett Favre. They might actually revert from their usual strategy of having 20 hour NFL coverage. They might also cancel NFL Live, as they did with Baseball Tonight, for a few nights to get the all inclusive Maddux breath-by-breath coverage. Can you imagine this line during a Monday Night Preseason game: "We head to the studios for this with Scott Reese: Greg Maddux has just landed in Los Angeles and is now heading for the nearest public restroom. Sources close to Maddux suggest that he consumed a bean burrito on the plane. We are not sure if this contributed to the sudden dash for the restroom. Keep it tuned to the Worldwide Leader for further updates on this developing story."

I don't see why Ross would not be an immediate replacement for Ruiz. He has good power, is better than Ruiz defensively and can hit LH pitching (RH, not so much). Aside from the batting average, he is the Anti-Ruiz. He might hit .250 the rest of the season, which is more than I am willing to prognosticate for Ruiz.

The only reason I can see why he wouldn't be an immediate replacement would be to get him some experience with the pitching staff. That certainly wouldn't happen in the minor leagues, unless Adam Eaton is soon to become part of the MLB rotation again. If that is the case, Bruce G was right all along.

I don't see why Ross would not be an immediate replacement for Ruiz. He has good power, is better than Ruiz defensively and can hit LH pitching (RH, not so much). Aside from the batting average, he is the Anti-Ruiz. He might hit .250 the rest of the season, which is more than I am willing to prognosticate for Ruiz.

The only reason I can see why he wouldn't be an immediate replacement would be to get him some experience with the pitching staff. That certainly wouldn't happen in the minor leagues, unless Adam Eaton is soon to become part of the MLB rotation again. If that is the case, Bruce G was right all along.

I'm moving to Quakertown PA Saturday. How can I still get Phillies, Flyers, and Sixer games without getting Comcast, or is it impossible?

Redbeard - it ain't Fly Eagles Fly, but check the middle of this page for Fightin' Phils lyrics and an MP3. It does have a string band, not like those other frontrunner songs.

Feliz has a homer and an error so far in Reading tonight.

Kind of sucks to see a guy with 350 wins jumping around so much. Reminds one of Steve Carlton. Lefty had money problems. That's why he hung on so long. It was depressing to watch. Maddux proved he can still pitch the other night for sure. But it still bums me out to see it.

I hope the Phillies front office is paying attention (they're not.) The Dodgers are struggling along trying to stay above .500, and in about a month they acquire Casey Blake, Manny Ramirez, and Greg Maddux.

Maddux is a west coast guy with a no trade clause who would only approve a trade to a west coast team.

I understand. It doesn't have to be Maddux.

Yikes, from Yahoo Sports, although I have to wonder what this looked like at this time last year:


AccuScore ran 10,000 simulations of the remainder of the 2008 baseball season.

National League
Chicago Cubs 98.3 percent
Milwaukee Brewers* 69.5 percent
New York Mets 60.2 percent
Arizona Diamondbacks 51.5 percent
Los Angeles Dodgers 49.3 percent
St. Louis Cardinals 24.6 percent
Philadelphia Phillies 24.2 percent
Florida Marlins 20.4 percent

I don't think Maddux was what we needed anyway. He rarely goes more than 5 innings anymore. He USED to be Greg Maddux. Now he's more like a number 4 or 5 starter, the other night notwistanding. We already have 5 or 6 of them.

So does this mean Maddux starts against the Phils this weekend?

comcast isn't the only cable company in quakertown.

I'm still seeing Kendrick starting Friday against LA, I'm really hoping they move up Hamels.

PhillR: You're not too sharp, even for a Mets fan.

BTW, the Dodgers pick up of Greg Maddux is another smart move by a GM that has had a string of bad ones. I think they make the playoffs.

Are the Phils actively trying not to have Hamels face the Mets? If he doesn't start on Friday it sure looks that way. Unreal.

TK: Pitching Hamels on short rest is a good idea because....

TK: Oh you're talking Friday. Nevermind. That would be full rest.

Yep, 4 days rest to Friday, and that sets him up to pitch against the Mets on Wednesday. I don't understand why they WOULDN'T do that.

TK, I agree. That Wednesday game is WAY too important to not let Cole take it.

As much as I'd rather not run him down by October, we need as many starts as possible from Cole down this last stretch.

They didn't announce the probable pitcher for Friday until today, so they were at least thinking about it. You really don't know the condition of each pitcher's arm. Maybe they think the team's overall chances are better with each starter getting an extra day off.

So I guess Kendrick will pitch a game against the Mets. Yeah, that's great strategy right there.

Greg Maddux is not what we need and he would have vetoed a trade to the East Coast anyhow. But the issue isn't about Greg Maddux. It's about teams like the Dodgers, D-backs, and Angels aggressively addressing their needs with significant acquisitions, while a team which hasn't hit in more than 2 months doesn't even see a need to upgrade a No. 5 outfielder who has an OPS in the .500s, has managed 1 pinch hit all year, and drops almost every fly ball hit to him. It's also worth remembering that, with the offense in shambles, Gillick spent the waning hours of the pre-waivers trading deadline trying to engineer a trade for yet another No. 5 pitcher to go with the 2 who are already in our rotation and the 3 to 4 more we have waiting at Triple A.

Campaign Cheer should last the rest of the year. Its a great idea. We've been booing for so so long...

funny and true:
after my 3 year old daughter's first live phillies game (vs. pirates - sunday), she booed my driving on the way home. Talk about a mirror!

CONTROL 13: Quakertown is a comcast area the only other cable company is service electric which carries comcast on their basic line up, plus if a game is on comcast 9 Service Electric will pick up that game feed for the night plus they carry the AAA and AA phillies farm teams home games. so you would be better off getting service electric cable over comcast cable but there isn't any cross competition so if your in a comcast area your stuck with comcast.

I wonder if Melvin Mora of the Orioles has cleared waivers, because his .280, 21 hr, 91 rbi (not to mention he's having an absolute torrid August) would sure look pretty good in the Phillie lineup right about now.
How about Jason Donald to the O's for Melvin?

clout - "I'm just trying to be nice."


Mike - We pretty much established in the off-season that Mora was done(obvious from those numbers) and that Pete Feliz is the future of this team.

Campaign Cheer is in full effect tonight!

Kudos on the effort, Carson. With all that positive energy, how can Jimmy do anything other than go 4 - 4 with a walk, six SBs and an unassisted triple play. I bet he sees at least 30 pitches tonight!

Andy- sarcasm noted. Seriously though, why bother booing him and justifying his statement, rather flip the script on him and give him the complete opposite...CHEER!

Pedro Feliz hit 2 homeruns last night for Reading. He's an upgrade over Bruntlett, and gives Manuel back his favorite bench asset (Dobbs).

I like this Feliz kid we have down in Reading. He should be called up immediately with that power. Has he ever played 1B, maybe he should platoon with Howard, or even pitch instead of Kendrick.

I think the cheer for Rollins tonight should be "M - V - P?", with the question mark over-emphasized on the "P".

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