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Friday, September 26, 2008


After all of the peaks and valleys (and boy there have been a ton of them this season) we find ourself in a great position with three games left in the season.
If you would have told me Howard would hit .240, Rollins wouldn't hit half as many homers as he did last year, Jenkins wouldn't even crack the starting lineup by the end of the year, our starting catcher would hit .230, Feliz would be as mediocre as possible, So Taguchi and Bruntlett would be even worse than previously imaginable, Tom Gordon would miss essentially the entire year, Brett Myers would spend most of the season either in AAA or with his head up his ass, and we would have no viable 8th inning option out of the pen...
If you would have told me all of these things, and STILL this team controlled its own destiny in the last weekend of the season, I would have taken that in a second.
Sure we're frustrated, and we've been disappointed and flat-out angry at times, but, like MG and others have said, we take 2/3 this weekend and we should be good.
It's gonna be interesting - Let's Go Phils!

From Todd Zolecki-
Here are some postseason scenarios involving the Phillies:

If the Phillies win the NL East and the Mets win the wild card, the Phillies will play the Dodgers in the NL division series.
If the Phillies win the NL East and the Brewers win the wild card, the Phillies will play the Brewers in the NLDS.
If the Mets win the NL East and the Phillies win the wild card, the Phillies will play the Cubs in the NLDS.
If the Phillies and Mets finish the season tied in the NL East and with a better record than the Brewers, the Mets win the division because of their 11-7 record against the Phillies. The Phillies win the wild card.
If the Phillies and Mets finish the season tied in the NL East, but have a worse record than the Brewers, the Phillies would play the Mets in a one-game playoff Monday at Citizens Bank Park.
If the Phillies, Mets and Brewers finish the season tied, the Phillies would host the Mets in a one-game playoff to decide the NL East title Monday at Citizens Bank Park. If the Phillies lose, they would host the Brewers in a one-game playoff for the wild card Tuesday at Citizens Bank Park. If the Mets lose to the Phillies on Monday, they would host the Brewers in a one-game playoff Tuesday at Shea Stadium.

From my blog-
Friday 7:05- Collin Balester (3-6, 4.83 era, 1.43 whip) vs. Kentucky Joe Blanton (8-12, 4.79, 1.41). Saturday 3:55- John Lannan (9-14, 3.86, 1.32) vs. Grand Pappy Moyer (15-7, 3.78, 1.33). Sunday 1:35- Odalis Perez (7-11, 4.27, 1.46) vs. King Cole Hamels (14-10, 3.09, 1.08).

Friday 7:10- Chris Volstad (5-4, 3.10, 1.33) vs. Re-Re Mike Pelfrey (13-10, 3.70, 1.36). Saturday 1:10- Ricky Nolasco (15-7, 3.55, 1.12) vs. Nobody John Niese (1-1, 7.07, 2.00). Sunday 1:10- Scott Olsen (8-11, 4.23, 1.33) vs. Darth Santana (15-7, 2.64, 1.17).

Friday 8:00- Ryan Dempster (17-6, 2.99, 1.21) vs. Jeff Suppan (10-10, 5.06, 1.53). Saturday 3:55- Ted Lilly (16-9, 4.17, 1.25) vs. Dave Bush (9-10, 4.25, 1.15). Sunday 2:05- Jason Marquis (11-9, 4.43, 1.43) vs. Cheeseburger Sabathia (16-10, 2.80, 1.14).

Philly: Friday- 70% showers, Saturday- 60% thunderstorms, Sunday- 50% thunderstorms.
NY: Friday- 100% rain, Saturday- 90% thunder showers, Sunday- 60% thunder showers.

If the Phils take 2/3 this weekend, they're in the playoffs. Even if Milwaukee and the Mutts both win out, if the Phils take 2/3 they get two chances to win a one game playoff to make it to the divisional round. They just have to take care of business, and end up winning 8 of their last 12 like we all said would be good enough.

Thank you for not whining about how Pinella managed in the Cubs /Mets game last night. Ridiculous argument. You win almost 100 game and clinch early, you have the right to not play your best players on a wet field in a meaningless game. Why should the Cubs have to keep playing because the Phillies couldn't wrap it up against a weak Braves team at home (yes, I realize the Mets game would still impact the wild-card)?

The only good thing that happened last night was USC losing. When a Trojan goes up against a Beaver, sometimes the Trojan fails.

Now, tonight the Phils, gNats, Fish and the Muts will be wearing their rubbers in the rainy weather. My hope is that Fish should love water and should thrive.

This weekend is what we all wait for. Now that it's here, I feel like Puxatawny Phil and I want to go hide in that hole until spring. It's the years of Phillies failure that causes this gut reaction in me. Right now, I don't care if it's the Muts or the Brew Crew that makes the WC. My wish is that they are both swept this weekend. Good riddance to them!

This weekends forecast, heavily medicated with a slight chance of total mental blowout. What an exhausting season and the playoffs haven't even begun yet. I think they take games 1 and 3 of the series to secure a playoff spot. I have no idea if they will come out division champs or not. They are in control of their own destiny but can they handle the pressure?

Yuengling, check. Pizza, check Lorenzepram, check. Things to throw when things go bad, check. I was hoping they wouldn't do this to us again. Oh well. Buckle up.

Can Moyer pitch 3 games in a row on no days of rest---oops '64 Gene Mauch flashbacks are happening again- gotta find the decaf.

While the Phils should win 2/3, they certainly could use some help from the Marlins. Who wouldn't like to see the Mutts collapse again?

JW, thanks for the shout out on your Website. I'm glad my stress and anxiety can bring inspiration for one of your posts today. Keep up the good work brother!! Good luck and Let's Go METS!!!!!!

2 of 3 is definitley the key. Then both the Mets AND the Brewers would have to sweep just to force the Phils into a playoff. Hate to say it but to go worse than 2 out of 3 is to choke. It all starts tonight. Win tonight and some of the pressure goes away.

I, also, would like to defend the Cubs. If the Phils clinched early would you want Howard, Utley, etc. playing in the rain in a meaningless game?

Alright, so last year, the Rockies spoiled my fun by knocking the Padres out of the playoffs, and costing me $14 in non-refundable Playoff ticket fees.

I'm about to grab some Dodger playoff tickets, and I would not appreciate watching somebody else.

Don't mess it up gents. Screw this 2 of 3 talk, if you can't sweep Washington, you don't deserve to call yourself a champion, especially this time of year.

MG hit it on the head. If they cannot beat the Nats 2 out of 3 games on the home field, well... sad to say but you have only yourselves to blame if the playoffs don't come to pass.

That resaid, I'm still proud of the team, they have battled some injuries, some disappointing acquisitions, and haven't had a lot of help from the FO. True, Lidge has worked out way beyond what I believe anyone expected, but there were no blockbuster acquisitions a la Santana or Sabathia (or even Harden).

Good job so far, guys. Let's slam the door this weekend on these other palyoff wannabes.

Presidential Debate is back on - tough TV choice - yeah right- Go Phillies!!!

Can we postpone the game because of the economic crisis?

season series so far

phillies vs. nats 9-6
mets vs. marlins 9-6

3 games to go...


MG: Agree with you 100%. I said as much to my brother watching Sportscenter this morning. Regardless of what the Mets do all weekend if you take care of business with the Nationals they don't deserve to go. I want a sweep.

We have our two best starters all season long going this weekend along with Blanton who had a good enough outing last Saturday. A sweep is there for the taking. Do it and we win the East and who cares what the Brewers and Mets do.


This Afternoon: Periods of rain. High near 68. East wind around 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.

Tonight: Occasional rain. Low around 61. East wind around 6 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.

Yeah, they need to win them all. They are the only team in this three way race that controls their own destiny--they just need to make it happen.

Man, I would want no part of that Marlins team if I was staring at trying to win 3 in a row. They are a tough team. The Nats, um, not so much. We need to take care of bidness and wrap this diddy up. Win the division and play the Dodgers? Fine by me...

2 of 3 'should' do it...

Players who NEED to step up this series to get us to the promise land:

Joe Blanton
Jimmy Rollins
Pat Burrell

Everybody else will chip in. Need to see the veterans come through in the big spots.


The only good thing that happened last night was USC losing. When a Trojan goes up against a Beaver, sometimes the Trojan fails.
Lake Fred- Funniest post I have ever read on BL.
Really should sweep this weekend but I'm worried about the Nats. They always play the Phils tough with low scoring games seemingly the norm. The starters need to step up big in this final series.

If Jimmy and Howard can hit like they did during the win streak we should be OK.

Have a hunch it's going to be a wild one- with a lot of pitchers used on both sides- Hope this weekend brings a revival of hittin' season.

I don't think there was much whining at all about Pinella's choice yesterday.

1) They've wrapped up their division and best record in the league.
2) They had already won 2 games in the series against the Mets playing mostly all starters in all 3 games.
3) There was rain scheduled all night, which only increases the chances of injury.

In fact, the AAA players managed to build a lead on the Mets. I only wish we'd have seen the best bullpen arms from the Cubs. No way the Mets make that comeback vs. Marmol and Wood. So they got a gift. It doesn't matter however, because we need to win vs. the Nats to get in. We shouldn't be worried about backing in because the Mets suck.

You think we get this one in tonight guys? Not doing anything in the Lehigh Valley at the moment.

I think most of the whining was in humor (mine was anyway.) Lou did what we would have wanted Manuel to do. It was simply frustrating to watch.

First, everyone who reads and posts here owes JW a cold beer (or four). It's nice to have a (usually) sane place where we Fightins' fans can argue, complain and commisurate (sp?). It's home. Thanks, Jason!

This is the time of year we all wait for. We need to take two out of three from Washington and I have a strong hunch that we will get it done. I've got my nitro tablets on the coffee table and dibs on the big TV, so I'm good to go. Monday evening ushers in a New Year for me... God willing, I'll be joyously celebrating a Divisional Championship as well. Go Phils!!!

i dont hold anything against lou for not using his arms or position starters, that would be stupid. but no pinch hit from any of your big bats when its close and late is weak.

"Who wouldn't like to see the Mutts collapse again?"

Actually, I'd rather see the Mutts lose out because of a collapse than the Phils take the division because they sweep.

"Actually, I'd rather see the Mutts lose out because of a collapse than the Phils take the division because they sweep."

phlipper, thats dumb. youd rather the phils win as a result of the other team losing. have you ever played a sport? do you even like the phillies, or just hate the mets?

I can't believe someone wants to see the Phils go into the playoffs on a losing streak.

Here's what we should all be rooting for...

Phils win tonight, Mets lose tonight, Phils win tomorrow, Mets make tee times, Phils rest Sunday.

Here is my wish list - Philles sweep, Mets lose al three- Brewers lose 2/3.
Hello Miller Park & Good bye forever Shea.

CJ - I don't like either/or thinking; I'm kind of a both/and kind of guy. How about if the Phils and Fish both sweep. That would be worth celebrating.

Gosh, Bubba. I kind of was typing that while you were posting. It's that, um, "great" minds thing again.

Wish list- Phils win first two. Mets lose first one. Marson catches Kendrick game three. Ruiz plays third.

About the whining, well, Lou P brought this on himself. He said that he was going to respect the integrity of the game... and didn't. Of course the Chicago Sun-Times said there was team grumbling that the Phillies were the one team that most scared the Cubs, so perhaps there was "strategy" involved in the decisions. For the record, I don't mind if the Cubs rested some starters for the game, but resting 6 starters is a but much. `Nough said.

The Phillies need to win, it's that simple. Shame on them if they can't man up and get this done. I'd love to be in the clubhouse at 3:15.

Andy- Hope the great minds thing catches on .

Also hope Cholly's great gut has him pushing all the right buttons.
I posted once as "Cholly for Prez" as a joke but would like to have that positive vibe about our manager again.

This team played tight against the Braves and didn;t execute well enough to win. I'm hoping the day off loosened them up a bit and they come into this series rebooted.


There was a bit of frustration (to put it mildly) towards Lou last night, but he did the right thing.
I'm hoping the Phils end up playing the Dodgers, but that's only because I got tickets!

Bubba, in re: Cholly for Prez

An Andy version of the debate tonight, with Cholly for Prez representing:

McCain - *drivels on about foreign affairs*

Obabma - *drivels on about foreign affairs*

Cholly - *belches loudly* Anyone for donuts?

It should be noted re: Lou that one of the starters (De Rosa) he did play last night strained his calf and will sit out the remainder of the regular season to heal it.

Taking the report as accurate, I find it hard not to sympathize with his decisions yesterday. And the game wasn't nearly as wet as it could have been/was expected to be.

they seem to have backed off on the rain predictions a bit. the bulk of the moisture is well off-shore and does not look like it will affect the game at least for the start.

It really doesn't matter whether Piniella merely wanted to rest his starters, or whether he had a more nefarious motive. The point is: stuff like that undermines the integrity of the game. If he wasn't actively trying to lose the game, he sure created the appearance that he was doing so -- or, at the very least, that he didn't care one way or another. There's nothing that can be done about it now and, in a sense, the Phillies don't have standing to complain since they could have made last night's game moot if they had taken care of business against Atlanta. Still, if some coach tried that in the NBA, David Stern would impose a very stiff fine; I have seen him do it before. Going forwad, Bud Selig should impose the same policy in baseball.

Were any of the Phils complaining about Lou's moves or just the fans? I haven't read anything about it.
How does a manager who chooses to play who he wants undermine the integrity of the game?

bap: I really, really think last night should be an exception. Putting your best players out there in that kind of weather condition in a game you didn't need to win is negligent. They suffered one injury after all... imagine if a few players had gone down. The Cubs won enough games to earn that right, I believe.

GoPhilsGo: The theory is that the integrity of the game is affected when a manager chooses to sit his best players in a game against a team in the middle of a close playoff race... especially if the other teams in the race aren't afforded that same luxury.

CJ-understood, but Lou (or any manager for that matter)has the right to play the lineup he wants. We have all seen players in all sports get pulled out of games when the result has already been decided. Lou's goal at this point is to worry about the playoffs and to keep his lineup healthy. I certainly wanted to see the Mets lose last night (and every night) but I still don't think Lou did anything wrong.

I absolutely concur in Pinella's right to avoid unnecessary risk to his starters' health. Still, there is something very unseemly about a manager essentially throwing a game. From what I saw, he deliberately used struggling hitters in crucial pinch hitting situations and his choice of pitchers seemed designed to shorten the game. If conditions were so poor, the umps should have called it. At some point, where a manager is "putting his team in a position to lose", a forfeit would be preferable.

There is a difference between throwing a game and not doing everything you can to win. Clearly, last night was a case of the latter and, as such, not improper given that managers all the time lose games in an effort to win games later.

We've heard plenty of complaints about Cholly's bullpen decisions. "Hey, you don't need to bring (fill in the blank) in this game! Save his arm for when we need him later!" Well, seems like that's what Lou did. He saved them for later.

Lou can always say he was trying to get (Bum Player X) going.

"There is a difference between throwing a game and not doing everything you can to win. . . . [the latter is] not improper given that managers all the time lose games in an effort to win games later."

Posted by: clout

True - unless that manager's name was Pete Rose.

Hugh, we're assuming that Lou isn't betting, but you never know.....

Yo, new thread.

Lsat night's rainout and the juggling of the Nats rotation means tonight really is the most crucial game of the series for this reason: The Nats are throwing their worst pitcher and he's the only righty the Phils will face. Howard & Uts must come up big and Cholly must start Dobbs.

If the Phils lose tonight that means they face must-win games against two straight lefties, lefties who are better than the 2 Atlanta lefties who just beat them. Lannan held the Phils to 2 runs in 6 IP the last time he faced them. Perez gave up 3 in 5, but he's wildly inconsistent and can be very tough when he's on.

A win tonight relieves that pressure.

I am shaking with anticipation. Strange sidenote: Two guys I work with ran into Vic in a JG Wentworth office this morning. Sort of crazy to think that on a day like today those guys are still out doing normal, human, day-to-day activities.

Any weather update from the park? Radar looks good after weather people calling for Noah.

Go Phils,MUST win tonight. Lannan is tough and is every pitcher named Perez like that?

Mets are only 4.5 ahead of Florida. Good thing the season ends soon.

No problem with Pinella managing the way he is. Let's see the Cubs try to turn it back on after a bunch of losses heading into the playoffs.

Ryan Howard. In 20 years, you will tell your kids.. Ryan Howard. Once Upon A Time there was a player by the name of Ryan Howard. He would strikeot 200 times! He would commit error after error in the field. He would hit .180 after the first two months. But in the end - this man they called Ryan Howard - would drive in 20 more runs than anyone in the league, would hit 10 more HRs than anyone else, would carry an entire team on his back to October more than anyone else did.

There are no comparables. There are no stereotypes. This is a man that no one has witnessed before. This is Ryan Howard - the most dangerous hitter in the city of Philadelphia...ever (sorry Schmidtter, but its true)

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EST. 2005

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