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Saturday, September 27, 2008

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well said. here's hoping this gets sorted out today, so we can watch nationals v. iron pigs tomorrow.

Howard was money last night. On offense, at least. After a stretch of outstanding defense, he seems to have lost his focus again.

Even with his crazy September, I still can't see him winning MVP after his piss poor first half.

Abridged notebook items from today's DN: The Philadelphia chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America names Brad Lidge Phillies MVP. Kyle Kendrick and Adam Eaton will not be on the playoff roster, as expected.

Let's hope both the mutts and brewers lose today so they throw CC on short rest sunday so he cant go game 1 wednesday. That being said, let's take the division this afternoon and relax and watch the eagles sunday night

A couple days off with some "back-to-the-basics" fielding drills mixed in for Howard could rejuvenate his focus. The man has been a veritable ox the whole year.

But that's a matter to consider if, and only if they clinch.

Killer instinct boys. Go for the jugular.

And I would love to see HanRam, Baker, Cantu, Ross and Uggs tee off on Santana this afternoon.

If we're going to be greedy here, I'm hoping for all three teams to win today (or Phils & Mets win, Brew crew loses). Whatever gets the Phils the chance to rest everyone tomorrow and the Mets/Brewers having to go all out to make it in.

Even better, how about a 1 game playoff between those two for the wild card?

There's also the fact that they made Santana throw like 130 pitches last time out.

Man, things fell exactly the way I wanted them to last night... Phils win, Mets lose, and Milwaukee wins. Hopefully the rain won't be a PAIN in the rear today. I'd like to be able to watch football tomorrow.

I can't wholeheartedly agree with a Howard MVP. As unbelievable as he has been this September, I think the first half may and probably should negate that enough to tilt the scales toward Pujols. When you have a guy ike Ryan who had a brutal, brutal first half (remember the scathing posts from BL?) as a prime contender, perhaps that is the type year when as a voter perhaps you look toward sustained excellence over the season from a guy like Pujols.

This will probably open me to flames, but there is a part of me that also feels that Chase is going to be in line for an MVP one year soon. Three slightly shaky Phillies MVP awards in three years might just poison the well, so to speak, and work against Chase in years to come.

Don't get me wrong, I think the award should be decided without fear or favor every year on an individual basis. But voters are human, and at some point I think they are going to say, "Enough with these Phillies already, at least until they win a WS. If we give it to another Phillie in the next decade, the player is going to have to have a year so unbelievable that there is literally no other posible choice."

I love the big guy and part of me would like to see another MVP for him, but not sure this is the year. OTH, the season isn't over yet.

Also, a tip of the hat to Blanton (and of course the BP performances behind him). It may not look pretty, but somehow the job is getting done and he deserves a share of the credit. Cole has to be wondering what HE needs to do to put a W in the column, but the fact is Blanton has pitched in some big games down the stretch and has notched some of those W's.

SI.com's last "Power" rankings had this tidbit:

"LVP (Least Valuable Player): Kyle Kendrick. Don't let his 11 wins fool you, Kendrick was a bullpen killer who got worse as the season went on. Talk about a sophomore slump -- Kendrick's ERA ballooned from 3.87 in his rookie season to 5.46 in 2008."

Not to be too negative looking, but what about Eaton? Taguchi?

That said, every single one of those guys have come up big at some point this season. Taguchi's game-tying double against the Mets in August; KK's 8-inning 4-hit gem against Oakland that led to a rare interleague victory; Eaton's pitching to his potential in a win over the Reds sometime in June.

In fact, going over the Phils' roster, I can distinctly remember a game-changing play or outing from nearly all of them (exceptions are Cervenak and Walrond). Hopefully, each of them will remember their capacity to come through big as the lights get a little brighter for the rest of this year.

I love Ryno's effort but I still think Pujols is the MVP...Imagine having him in our lineup all season instead of Howard...no holes in his swing, hardly any strikeouts, .350+ average instead of .250. We'd probably be a 100 win team with Pujols.

although i dislike chatter about individual awards (from a selfish standpoint, i think they add a unnecessary premium to salaries, and therefore taking up limited resources in the salary dept.; and justifying increases in ticket prices, etc.), i think it is ironic (usage?) that pujols is in a position similar to Howard circa '06 in that he is having a stellar year on a non-playoff team. there was noise after the MVP award was given that Pujols thought the award should go to a guy on a playoff-contending team. i wonder if he thinks so now, now that the table have turned?

that said, pujols is having a monster monster year; considering that he's been playing with a bum elbow/arm all year makes it that much more astounding.

Bob,

Good point about Eaton and Kendrick's contributions. I think the one plus about this season is that we had people in the wings to make these necessary replacements sooner than we did last season. Except for Taguchi, anyways.

As much as I hate errors by 1st basemen and strikeouts by the buttload, Ryan Howard should win MVP.

thought for the off-season:

hamels got his chiropractor.
can the phils pay for a ballet instructor to ingrain some footwork into Howard's fielding game?

A peek at the MLB stats shows Ryan Howard leads all 1st baseman in errors and has the lowest fielding %. But he also has the most homeruns and rbi.

The Top 4 teams in the NL in era are 1. Dodger- 3.69, 2. Brewers- 3.86, 3. Cubs 3.88, and 4. Phillies- 3.89. It's no coincidence that they'll likely represent the NL in the playoffs this season.

No other player in MLB has 40 homeruns or 130 rbi, Ryan has long since eclipsed those numbers.

I love when MetsBlog gets things wrong...

The Phillies face the Nationals in DC at 4 pm.

Really? I live in DC and last I checked the game was very definitely in Philadelphia... ha.

The best all-around player in the National League is Pujols, a genuine "5 tools" guy. However, the most valuable player in the league is either Lance Berkman or Ryno. These guys can (and have) carry their teams. Neither is a bad choice.

Question... if the Mutts tank in their game with the Marlins (wouldn't that be sweet?) will Jamie still pitch today? Would they think of giving him a short break before the playoffs?

One other thought (always a dangerous thing) occurred to me: Yesterday was arguably the most important game of the year for the Phillies. I'd be curious as to whether any of the team's Main Line owners bothered to see the game live from their private box.

Jamie wants to pitch today, so he will pitch today. If the Mets lose before the Phils take the field, or lose while the Phils game is in the early innings, I could see Charlie giving Grand Pappy the early hook, but he gets the start regardless. Also, Brad Lidge said he's pitching the 9th for sure even if they're winning 100-0.

Its hard to forgot Howard's dismal start to the season, but he has been the best hitter in baseball at the time of the year when it matters most. He's carried this team (almost) into the playoffs, and his HR and RBI numbers are sooo far ahead of everybody else, I really think he is the MVP.

But I would not begrudge Pujols the award either.

In any case, Howard is for real. Let's remember that next May when the guy is hitting .187 again.

anybody know where new york fans can catch phils on Tv today? we get, good god, yanks and red sox. Also carried on Spanish Fox and I am sure mlb.tv will black out

Howard was batting .163 on May 7. The season was just 35 games old.

Since that point,

Howard had 42 HR 130 RBI
He's batting .272/.352/.598
In comparison, Pujols has 30 HR 90 RBI
batting .362/.452/.671

It's not just the last month. Those first 35 games OVERWHELMING bring down his numbers. August was bad... but few players remain consistent month to month.

I dispute the notion that the difference between Pujols and Howard would be 10 wins. With burrell's slump in the second half, those extra times Pujols would have been on base probably wouldn't have turned into runs. And with 12 less home runs, he's probably leaving more runners on base that may not get knocked infrom those behind him.


That's why a guy like Ryan Howard is SO valuable.

I said last week, if it was my vote it would be Pujols. But the Ryan Howard's case is strong. And is NOT shaky. Howard's 06 MVP was not shaky. He had a historic season. Just because there was another contender is JUST baseball. And last year there was no clear cut winner. Jimmy Rollins season was historic in nature as well. Few players have put together a season like he did.

I don't think Howard will win the award. But he will be a very close second. In fact it's VERY possible that whoever wins the MVP award this year will be, because of second place votes and not an overwhelming amount of 1st place votes.

Pujols 2008 > Howard 2008

Howard's been amazing. I think his turn-around only makes it more appreciable, but he's the player of September, not the year. Only one guy can win it.

Also

Halladay 2008 > Lee 2008

clay: wogie's on greenwich at charles. not a terrible cheesesteak either.

Thanks, Birds. But where would they get the feed from? Won't Fox force them to not show any other games?

Wogies on grenwich... small place that gets rowdy and loves their fightins. They have all 162 games.

Currently, Howard has a VORP of 35, while Pujols' VORP is 96. About every 10 runs of VORP is worth a win, so this year Pujols would have given the Phillies about 6 extra wins.

VORP doesn't factor in defense, so the disparity is probably greater.

Obviously, Metsblog is a recommended read today. My personal favorite exchange:

Comment by krumbledkookie
2008-09-26 23:28:34
BELIEVE, people.

That’s our job. If we can’t do our part, how can we expect the Mets to do theirs?

------------

Comment by thebullpensERA
2008-09-26 23:29:38
because they are f$%king bumbs!

I said I wouldn't feed the trolls but, with this comment at the end of the last thread, the poster calling himself "Phils R Bad" has broken the world's record for idiocy:

The Phils deserved it. They have a worse lineup and starting rotation, but hey, their worst players are better than the Mets worst players, and that's all that counts in baseball I guess.

I could go through PRB's whole post, but I choose only to focus on this bit of inanity: "their [the Phillies'] worst players are better than the Mets worst players, and that's all that counts in baseball I guess."

See, PRB, I think this is the problem with your attempt at logic: on the Phillies -- as on most other playoff teams -- the guys who come in to pitch relief every night are NOT the worst players on the team.

The single most asinine part of your post, however, is the part that says, "that's all that counts in baseball I guess." So what are you implying? That baseball should change the rules so that the games end after 6 innings and there's no need for relief pitchers? That's a very novel concept. Perhaps you might want to write a letter to your Congressman. Our national pasttime is in a state of disgrace when one team can out-play the other for the first 6 innings, and still lose night after night. Bud Selig won't do anything about it, so Congress needs to act now, by changing the rules.

PRB: I keep telling myself I'm not going to respond to your posts anymore. But let me say this. If you are intentionally trying to be moronic just for the sake of amusing yourself, then you have indeed succeeded and are probably very amused right now. But if you are being sincere in your posts (as I suspect you are), then do yourself a huge favor and quit posting, because every time you post, you break your own previosly established world's record for idiocy. Anyone who trolls another team's website to harass them is pretty much a moron, by definition. But you have truly distinguished yourself as the biggest moron of the whole moronic group. Congratulations.

It's funny how much that 6th inning state emboldened some Mets fans, as if it were proof that they are, in fact, the better team. The long season (and long game) be damned. I'll just post these things again, though.

4th-6th

PHI: 295 RS, 233 RA
NYM: 250 RS, 270 RA

7th-9th

PHI: 217 RS, 180 RA
NYM: 191 RS, 240 RA

4th-9th

PHI: 512 RS, 413 RA
NYM: 441 RS, 510 RA

I'm not ready to concede that the Mets rotation and lineup is better than the Phils. Even if they were, guess what, the pen is on the team as well and they pitch a ton of innings.

Yo, new thread.

Phils LVP is easily Eaton once again. This guy was so bad this year again by mid-season that he precipitated the Blanton trade before the trade deadline (and forced the Phils to pay a pretty high price including two of their better prospects).

I will give the Phils some credit for at least realizing that he was a dud and they had to give a vacation the rest of the season if they were going to make a legit run at the playoffs again.

Phils are now 9-4 in Blanton's 13 starts. Phils hasn't exactly won maybe of these games because Blanton was dominate (maybe 3 or 4 where he pitched really well by going 6/7 innings and only giving up 2/3 runs) but do the Phils go 9-4 if Eaton had started those 13 games?

At best my bet is that they would have gone 6-7 and that is unlikely too considering their offense was exactly producing a whole lot in late July through August.

Just to add to the MVP talk... Albert Puljos should win. I'm the biggest Ryan Howard fan in Philly, but Puljos had the better year on a terrible team, that contended all year.

I'm just glad that Howard had a month like this to quiet all the 'closet cases' who wanted Pat Burrell to replace Howard at 1st base for 3 years and 40 million.

Way to go Phils. 90 Wins is not 100, but they hit the 90 plateau with every possibility of finishing with 93 wins. Who would have thunk when they were in the July duldroms? But it ain’t over until it’s clinched. Go Jamie!

By the way, about Moyer; I have not heard or seen this anywhere else, but I hold that Jamie Moyer MUST be considered seriously for the Cy Young Award. And if he wins today, all the more so.

Want to share this;

It’s 1983, the season that the Phils caught lightning in a bottle winning their last 12 games of the season with Schmidt and Rose, Morgan and Perez. They were in the final game of their 4-1 belting of the L.A. Dodgers — I remember to this day; Richie Ashburn laughing hysterically, almost insanely as the Phils finished off the Dodger to head to the World Series against the Orioles. One of the all-time great Phillies fans moments.

"They were in the final game of their 4-1 belting of the L.A. Dodgers — I remember to this day; Richie Ashburn laughing hysterically, almost insanely as the Phils finished off the Dodger to head to the World Series against the Orioles. One of the all-time great Phillies fans moments."

That's funny. I remember that too. Tim McCarver(a rooke brodcaster) did the very same thing in '80 when the Phillies finished off the Astros in the LCS.

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