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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

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Team OBP is .333, which is middle of the pack. At its lowest point, where was it? I want to say about .312. That's a huge improvement this late in the season. Those extra base-runners have been key - just look at what a few extra base runners did last night in Victorino and Dobb/Golson.

Other factors not to be ignored: Weaker schedule means weaker opposing pitching. Weaker opposing defenses.

Another factor: Better lineup construction. Full-time Werth, bumping Vic lower, splitting Utley/Howard.

Definitely better lineup construction. Also, let's make sure we credit not only Charlie and the team for playing Werth everyday, but also Werth himself for proving it against righties. He hadn't shown a whole lot against them earlier in his career, and his improvement against them has turned him into an above-average all around outfielder. Can't say enough about what he's meant to this team.

Werth is still struggling but if i'm Charlie i don't change a thing, keep starting Ruiz, platoon dobbs/Feliz and keep the order the same. Cmon Cole let's get #15 tonight, Mets have Santanna going

this has nothing to do with anything, but I finally got my first Phils jersey last night. Lidge.

If Cole wins tonight, it will be the first time in more than 40 years that a pitcher who came up through the Phillies' minor league system has had back-to-back 15-win seasons for the Phillies (Ferguson Jenkins, of course, did it, but not with the Phillies). The last to turn the trick was Chris Short in 1964, 65, and 66. That tells you something about the quality of their minor league system over the last 40 years.

The hand favors the Phils for a win tonight. Cole Hamels is superior to Jo-Jo Reyes, but we all know that's why the game is played on the field not on paper. Go Phils!

One thing which is really vexing me this morning is this: the Phillies are just 7-11 against the Mets this year, and 6 of those losses were by the bullpen, after the 6th inning. I learned last night that, when the bullpen loses you a game, it doesn't actually count. So why is MLB counting these losses against us in the standings? We should have clinched the division several games ago.

Mets Troll: Interesting logic. The Phillies have won 10 of 11 and have played .700 ball in September &, by your calculations, the Mets "handed" them the division title.

I know right? Bullpen pitchers arent even real players.

Well, I never said you guys weren't a good team. However, I will say that we are definitely 50% responsible for you having a 2.5 game lead in the division. I will give credit where it is due. If you weren't a good team, you wouldn't be in the position you're in right now.

However, you also needed help to get to the position you're in. That's all I meant. But I was just reading your comments during the games last night. I'm a frustrated Mets fan, so forgive me. You guys know the feeling. It's like being an Eagles fan.

So if we'd gone on this streak in April instead of Sep, and were still 2.5 games up would it have been handed to us?

We love our stars every week. Like anything you love, sometimes you get angry at it. That doesn't mean we don't love them. Its called being passionate about your club.

Surprisingly, the team OBP hasn't changed much since April. It's low was .325 in May, and they've been steadily in the .333 range since.

Even since Aug 17th, one of their best stretches of play (24-10), their line is .263/.337/.441.

Since the Mets series (sept 5) it's .265/.340/.459.

Since MIL (10-1) it's .279/.365/.494.

I think it may be about interchangeable parts to some extent. Burrell's OBP has shrunk while Howard's has risen, etc..

Of course that's how it is. Most of hte major media is NY based in this country...even ESPN is in Bristol, CT which is 50/50 NY and Boston. Thus we get tons of Boston and NY stories. That's life.

Though I was pleased that the Phillies play was the top story on XM 175 this morning on the way in...that almost never happens.

Days in First:

phillies - 74
marlins - 42
mets - 39


Prior to last night's game, I called for this of our pitching staff:
Happ for 6
Seanez 7th
Eyre 8th
Condrey 9th

And dammit if it didn't almost come true except Manuel didn't want to trust Condrey with a 4 run lead in the 9th. I suppose he had Madson warming with the game tight so it made sense to bring him in. But I was almost right!

The Phils have scored 215 runs in the 7-9 innings this year. The Mets have scored 186.

You can blame the pen if you want - it is their job to hold leads - but to credit the Phils pen with all their success is short-sighted. Yes, they've been very, very good. But as we saw with the Phils game last night, they're helped by their offense.

redbeard: The Marlins sure did hand the Phils the division on a silver platter!!!

Stupid comments by Mets fans. Yes, the Mets took the pressure off the Phils. It'd be a lot nicer if we ever had a real penant race going down the stretch where each team was playing good baseball, but that it too much to ask this Met team.

The Met Collapse part 2 has certainly helped the Phillies but, like last year, they won games when it counted.

I will agree with the other guy though that when October 1st comes around things are totally different, the lights are a lot brighter and the the uniforms tighter.

redbeard: yup. you guys deserve it. but the mets were 7.5 out of first at one point and going backwards. you guys slipped up like we are slipping up here. timing is everything.

i would still love to see a philly-ny nlcs. the risk-reward is about even.

Also

Innings 4-6 Runs Scored

PHI:: 293
NYM:: 241

Sophist: problem is, while your bullpen was surrendering 2-3 runs (maaaaybe)....my bullpen was surrendering 4-6 runs. oh, and blowing 7-0 leads.

PthePhils - just the most inane logic ever, but understandable from the POV of a mets fan.

the mets are 50% responsible for the phillies success? got it. so when i work hard and get a promotion at work, i'm really only 50% responsible for it. the other 50% is due to the other employee who wasn't good enough to earn it.

not wrong per se, just a totally irrelevant viewpoint.

jerry manuel is laughing and joking in his press conference and david wright wont stop talking about 07. does he know he doesnt have to comment on that stuff, he can just ignore the questions and say he is focusing on winning the next game? what a fool.

It is amazing to me that the Phils traded for LOidge, giving up no small value, and the Mets traded for Santana. Now there's all this bullpatootie that winning with a good bullpen is somehow cheaper. Sorry, buddy. The games last nine innings. You have to show up for all nine.

Incidentally, the Met's worst scoring innings are the seventh and the ninth. So it's not just your bullpen that's been stanking in the late going.

So here's the picture I'm going for here (though this whole thing is irrelevant since - like the Phils and Mets - most teams RP are going to pitch 3 innings a game)

Innings 4-9

PHI: 509 RS, 402 RA
NYM: 427 RS, 498 RA

f4f: well, the phils can win all they want. but when they were trailing the mets, they would have stayed right where they were.

i know what you're saying, it sounds like i'm giving you guys no credit. as much as i would like to not give you guys credit, i have to. you guys are a very good team. happy we have this rivalry going. i look forward to our series vs. the phils. the ballparks are loud. the fans are intense. it's fun.

I'm enjoying this ride, but it ain't over yet, and I'm pretty sure there will be some hair raising moments before the regular season ends.

The Mets sren't out of it yet, and Johan is going tonight.

Cole does sometimes lose.

Our team does appear to be pulling it together when it matters most. But the Phils have shown, time and time again, this season that closing the deal is not easy.

Like I said, I'm loving what I've seen for the past 10% of the season, but as a Phillies fan, i never stop being nervous.

And another way of interpreting the Mets' collapse is to simply recognize that when they were in first place, they were just playing over their heads. The real team is the one that chokes away games and it's unusual when they play all nine innings.

I'm not saying that's my way of interpreting the facts, just that they could be interpreted that way.

The season is 162 games long; the game is usually 9 innings long. Chances are the Phils will finish the season in first, a spot they've held for roughly half the season. The Mets will have held it for less than a quarter of the year.

You Mets fans are desperate. These are the facts.

Would you say we really have a rivalry? I mean, yes the fans hate one another, we have close proximity and play in the same division, with the 2 teams responsible for the last 3 division champs.

But have we played each other head to head in the playoffs recently? Have we both played well down the stretch? The Mets have layed down the last 2 years and the Mets ran away with the div. in 06' by June.

My point, it's no Boston-Yankees, Cards Cubs yet. Maybe someday..

Rollinsisgreat -
Well, last year we played a lot of meaningful games against each other down the stretch. But, you're right: is it really a rivalry when only one team shows up?

"I'm enjoying this ride, but it ain't over yet, and I'm pretty sure there will be some hair raising moments before the regular season ends."

+1. Maybe it's just the eternal pessimist in me, but I haven't bought my Phillies--2008 NL East Champs tshirt yet.

People, pick a handle and stick with it. I'm tired of this crap.

It's a rivalry in the same way that preying mantis sex is satisfying.

Man, we're really replaying 2007 again.

Mets fans arguing that their early season wins (April-May last year, July this year) should count for more because, darn it, it gave them hopes of a division title. And a lead!

Then when they lose game after game in September, complain that it's not fair!

The last thing I want is a Phils - Mets NLCS. I'll take my chances with the Cubs.

I prefer this stat:

2007 NL East champions: Phillies
Probable 2008 NL East champions: Phillies

We're about to win the division for the 2nd year in a row & these Mets trolls still think they have the better team.

rollinsux: "My point, it's no Boston-Yankees, Cards Cubs yet. Maybe someday.."


the thing is, those four teams you mention are media darlings and have been forever. the mets and especially the phillies are really afterthoughts from a national perspective.

also, both the mets and phils are "laid back" type teams. except for a few words here and there, they don't seem that into the rivarly themselves.


Sophist, or anybody: Where do you find the 'days in first' stat?

I've always felt that rivalries had more to do w/ mutual dislike between teams & their respective fans than the overall quality of both teams at any given time. *shrug*

BTW, does anyone know if Charlie had Romero up & throwing in the pen last night? I could've sworn I saw J.C. warming around the 8th or so, but now I'm not so sure.

The Phils have a nice road paved on paper. The Dodgers aren't that good, they should beat them. Of course unlike Hanley, Chipper and McCann, Manny will actually play in the games.

And then a tough Cub team, albeit with the worst karma/history/bad luck on their side. I think its in the MLB rules they aren't allowed to get to the World Series.

So the Phills could find themselves in the big dance.

Post ASB NL Offensive ranks (61 G for the Phils)

292 runs (4th)
76 HR (2nd)

.251 BA (14th)
.327 OBP (11th)
.527 SLG (6th)

80% SB (2nd)

It's interesting that the Phils have managed to be one of the most productive teams in the NL with some lousy peripherals. This was true in the first half as well.

EastFallowfield, b-r.com, team, schedule
http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/PHI/2008_sched.shtml

I picked a great time to come home this weekend and see a game (maybe all 3). While a true phan for over 40 years, I have been a naysayer this year sad to say. I didn't think they could do it. This team is amzing right now and it's great. GO PHILS!

Funny how Chipper, Hanley, and McCann always find their way in the lineup against the Mets. Just funny. Oh, and Soriano, Lee, etc as well. Wonder if those guys will play vs. the Brewers.

"Funny how Chipper, Hanley..." etc

Funny how sour grapes make the best whine.

Carlos Beltran: "With (Santana), now, I have no doubt that we're going to win in our division. So this year, to Jimmy Rollins, we are the team to beat."

Jimmy Rollins (paraphrasing): Carlos is a plagurist.

Calros Beltran: "I have nothing against Jimmy. He plays hard, he does his job, he's always hustling. Philly found a way to play better at the end and they won the division. But this year is going to be different."

Phuck:
My point wasn't to make excuses. The Phils win whether or not the stars are in the lineup. The Mets have caught lots of bad luck (september sched, injuries) but they simply can't beat bad teams or get people out in the bullpen, that is why they have failed this season.

Let's hope these bats and these winning ways really carry over into October this year.

I don't have a problem with Feliz and Burrell being on the cool side now- as long as they come up with those big 8th inning home runs on occassion. If Rollins, Howards, Chase and Vic are hitting all Pat the Bat and Feliz need to do is chip in with that one huge hit every now and then.

Loctastic: Good choice on the jersey. I keep waiting to see an influx of "Lights Out" jerseys. They are missing out on some merketing there especially with Lidge under contract for 3 more years.

Redbeard: I really think Jerry Manuel comes off like a horses ass with those interviews where he's laughing. I still remember the one after the last Mets/Phils game at CBP where he's talking about hitting the left hook. I'm not a Jerry Manuel fan. David Wright is a whiner and he just exemplifies the Mets fans. Wright seems to think he knows how to be a leader, but he really has no clue and always sounds stupid in interviews.

I would definitley like to see a Phils vs. Mets battle in the playoffs for the pennant. It would be EPIC. First, the Mets actually need to make the playoffs though. HAHA!

"Funny how Chipper, Hanley, and McCann always find their way in the lineup against the Mets."

This person doesn't watch his own team's games. Chipper sat for 2/3 against the Mets this week and McCann sat in one of the games as well.

Your posts reek of desperation. Anything to make yourself feel better about the epic fail that is the Mets in September.

I wish you guys would quit bashing the Muts. This season is not over yet and the baseball gods may invoke the "Gene Mauch clause" of the BL reverse psychology jinx just to punish us. Let the season play out, then bash the Muts!

First Carson and now DPatrone, all we need now is for RK to come crawling back begging for absolution on his lack of phaith for the trifecta. The "List" is all seeing.

Two other observations:
(1) Had the Phanatic caught that foul ball that would've been a web gem.
(2) Reading the comments threads at metsblog.com is like drinking a nice, tall, cool glass of lithium water. Very satisfying and near euphoric.

It'a amazing that the Phils managed to go 16-13 in August.

Their team line since May

May: .273/.346/.468 -- 65 2B, 3 3B, 42 HR
June: .232/.322/.394 -- 39, 10, 27
July: .270/.332/.468 -- 36, 6, 42
Aug: .235/.322/.394 -- 50, 7, 30
Sept: .260/.335/.446 -- 34, 5, 26

It also look like by the end of the season, 3B may be the only spot where the Phils don't get at least 100 OPS+ production. C is now at 97. RF is up to 92.

Not surprisingly, the Phils records in May, July, and Sept are a combined 46-28 (.621)

Here something interesting as well. Check out the pitching break-down by month:

May: 4.25 ERA
June: 3.73 ERA
July: 4.24 ERA
Aug: 3.32 ERA
Sept: 4.35 ERA

The pitching OPS against in August was .699. That's how you go 16-13 in a month where your offense has a combined OPS of .716. I suppose it shouldn't be surprising that these splits compliment each other so well. It seems lucky but there's probably a good explanation for it.

Mets played all their games vs LA with no Manny Ramirez. Phils played all their games vs LA with Manny Ramirez.

I think that balances out one series without Hanley Ramirez.

Chipper sat a lot at Shea, then played 3 games vs us in Atlanta.

Mets played Yanks instead of Red Sox, more games vs Colorado instead of St Louis, Seattle instead of Oakland.

We got extra game vs LA, Chi. They got extra game vs Mil (I think) and SD.

Hard to see how luck hasn't been a factor in Mets' favor right now.

This is why the season is 162 games long. ESPN has a SOS/RPI stat, as well. RPI is 25% team win pct., 50% opponents avg. win pct., 25% opponents' opponents avg. win pct..

Phils are 8th. Mets are 12th

They also have SOS listed: Phils are 21st, Mets are 26th.

From Buster Olney's chat today:

chris(smithtown,ny) : Who will be the biggest names on the trading block in the offseason in your opinion ?

Buster Olney: (1:46 PM ET ) Chris: Fielder and Ryan Howard.

I'm not gonna get into complaining about luck Fallowfield, but the Mets having to play 18 games in the final 17 days of the season without a day off and a very banged up team isn't easy.

Granted they lost to bad teams all season, which is why I won't play the excuses.

I'm done here. Enjoy your division title, have your fun for the next week and we'll see if your fightins can manage to eek out a win in the post season this year.

Toodles

Sophist-what I've wondered on that is is the winning pcts based on when you play them or the overall season?

If Phillies play the Blue Jays early in the season when they're in 2nd and the Mets play the Yankees when they're in next to last is that's what's in the RPI/SOS?

EFF - Without looking, I'd guess the overall record. So SOS/RPI is always in flux.

Beerleaguers, I need serious help here. I need to pick a beer to get for the clinching party friday or saturday. I think I might splurge on a case of Victory Festbier. It's one of their most popular fall seasonal's. I think anything brewed by Victory seems fitting.

This is much bigger problem than whether they are starting Dobbs or Feliz vs. RHP's during day games.

Rollinsux: "I'm not going to (x) but (x)."

One of my favorite kinds of posts!

Especially when it's followed by "but no excuses!"

I guess Weitzel will be able to tell if you post here after your "Goodbye Cruel World" statement under another name. The rest of us will just have to guess.

Tony D - I've been drinking Festbier and Brookyln's Pennant Ale during the win streak. The Festbier is pretty good, though not my favorite Victory beer (Prima Pils.)

Tony D: Go for the Victory Golden Monkey. It's like 10% alcohol, you drink 3 or 4 of those and you'll be well on your way.

i know we haven't wrapped it up yet, but i feel confident that the phils will be playing in october this year, likely against the dodgers. anyone want to weigh in on the really odd two series we played against l.a. this year?

refreshing your memory, they swept us in 4 at home, we swept them in 4 at home -- wonder how often that has happened statistically in mlb history? (it's one thing with two three-game series, but with two four-game series?)

also, it would have been one thing if one series was in april and another was in september -- as teams grow over the season and trades are made, the line-ups naturally change. but these two series were only a few weeks apart.

i'm nervous about l.a.'s offense. kemp, kent, loney, martin, manny, nomar, ethier, and blake are a formidable group. if our starting pitching holds form, we should be okay, but they don't seem to have any weak spots in their lineup, as we can with feliz-ruiz pitcher.

ruiz gets props for being a different second-half batter, and the phillies offense has been resilient enough that, even on its not-best night, they manage to come through late in the game. but i'm nervous about the dodgers offense, more so than the cubs.

Tony D: Go with a Stoudt's American Pale Ale or Flying Fish OktoberFish and maybe mix in some Saranac Pomegranate Wheat. It's a nice wheat beer with a hint of pomogranate taste. It may sound phoo phoo, but it isn't.

VoR - I think Kent's out for an extended period of time. He can't run, and Torre is indicating that he may be left off the roster for the NLDS.

Yards Pale Ale, if it's available in bottles yet (still).

Some of you guys are getting ahead of yourselves. Please, no jinxing.

sophist: Innings 4-9

PHI: 509 RS, 402 RA
NYM: 427 RS, 498 RA

Given that the Mets play in one of the most pitching oriented parks and the Phils in one of the most hitting oriented, this tells me that the Phillies pitching has been superior to the Mets pitching despite what the trolls have been saying.

If the Phillies even think of trading Ryan Howard it is out of pure cheapness. They better get more than a king's ransom in return too.

Funny I'm saying that since I pushed for the Howard to Boston for Youk, Ellsbury and Lester trade last year. We probably wouldn't have gotten all three, but two for Howard would have been acceptable. Youk's value was a lot lower last offseason. Boston would never entertain a deal like that now but it would have to be something along those lines. We better get more after he wins his 2nd MVP this year.

If I were the Phillies I'd fear trading him and then watching him break the single season home run record in another uniform.

Oh well, time to stay focused now on the season at hand and worry about that other stuff in November.

Clout, is that right? The Mets have a negative run differential?

MPN~

I never quite jumped off the bandwagon. I just wish that that the woners would have brought in the necessary players sooner to make this easier. For those of us who are getting older, our hearts can't take it. But it sure is fun.

Hey all you Mets phans, your team is good too really. Delgado and Wright have been tremendous. You couldn't ask for more then that. I believe the Phils are slightly better though. Both teams should make the playoffs. It'll be phun.

oh, in innings 4-9. Got it. Sorry, I got a bad score on my reading comprehension GRE.

"Tony D: Go for the Victory Golden Monkey. It's like 10% alcohol, you drink 3 or 4 of those and you'll be well on your way."

Too bad the Golden Monkey tastes like sh*t.

There are other, much MUCH better beers out there with 10%+ alcohol.

I've got tickets for the games tonight, Friday night and Sunday. I was lucky enough to be in attendance for the clinching game last season, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a similar experience this year.

HOWEVER: the Phils have not won anything yet, and I'm going to save my exaltation and mockery until if/when they do. Have fun tonight, folks!!!

Go Phillies!!! :-D

After the Abreu trade, I don't want the Phillies to trade Ryan Howard because they would simply get a bad return.

Off season is way ahead of ourselves, but the idea of losing both Burrell and Howard makes me want to puke. You know (after Abreu)in your heart of hearts that we would not get anything remotely appraoching equal value. Yech.

I don't see this year as a repeat of last year re: The Mets. I don't see what they're doing as a "collapse". They weren't that far ahead of the Phils and it wasn't for very long when they were.

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