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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

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Why can't the Phils hit when Cole is on the mound?

I think Myers is put in a very tough position tonight coming off a terrible start. But we need to look at it as an opportunity for him to gain momentum heading into the playoffs. The team needs him to have a strong postseason, and Myers should just assume that the playoffs start tonight.

Now, on the other side of things, if he has a bad start tonight and you see his face start to become bright red, then we all might be singing a different tune come next week, if there is a next week.

Did anyone see the Phillies Notebook in the Daily News today? It talks about how many players will be eligible for free agency or arbitration this offseason. Here's a quote from Ruben Amaro:

"Nobody who is contributing is going to leave our club because of finances," Amaro said. "There may be other reasons why guys leave, but it won't be because of that."

Somehow I doubt that...

Hopefully we can smack around Reyes again. But in reguards to the run support, we did make boneheaded plays. But Hampton pitched a good game and the Braves were due for a win against us.

dwr: i did read that but i honestly only care about this year right now. I mean Pennant Race! come on brother.

As bad as Hamels' pickoff throw was, I think Burrell's baserunning was the absolute killer play of the night. The momentum seemed to be shifting in their favor--they had been hitting the ball hard all night, but at fielders, and now they had two consecutive solid hits fall in and the crowd was getting back into it. Really, what was he thinking?

Plus, everyone knew Victorino was going to try and get to second after that blunder. He wasn't even close to being safe on the steal attempt. It was only the sixth, but those turn of events pretty much sealed the deal. It was so deflating.

Put last night's blunder filled loss out of our memory banks and win one tonight.
4 games to go - all against division teams with losing records- let's go phils- golden opportunity right now.

Totally Agree Matt. Was it me or was the crowd there deflated from the start? It seemed like when the Braves scored in the first they were pretty quiet the rest of the night until we finally scored those 2 runs.

I went to the game Monday night and the crowd was into it the whole time.We were on our feet it felt like the whole night, even when they were updating the mets losing. I sat next to two cubs fans who even said that they have been to almost every park and the phillies fans were up there for the loudest and most into the games as cubs and red sox fans.

I am going to try to go to the game again tonight since i do not have tickets already for this one, but if you are going. Get more into it, even if we are down early.

I liked my post from the previous thread so much that I reposted it here...

Geez, did every here on BL expect the Phils to go undefeated against the Bravos and the Gnats? Too many mistakes last night to win a close game. Hopefully, they got the sloppiness out of their system. Time to refocus starting tonight.

I really think if we get to 91-71 we will win the division. Four games to go, 2-2 is very do-able. Need a big game from Myers and from the bats tonight. Thursday's off-day comes at a good time to recharge their batteries and get ready to finish off the Gnats this weekend.

That Daily News article has Durbin eligible for arbitration but not free agency. I'm pretty sure that's wrong. He was signed to a one-year contract and is a FA.

Looking at that list, I was struck by all the key players who are arbitration eligible -- i.e., Howard, Hamels, Werth, Dobbs, Madson, Blanton, Condrey. Bottom line: you can forget about the Phillies resigning Burrell & you can forget about them being active in the FA market. With all these guys who are due big raises, Burrell's would-be $14M salary is already spent. The only way the Phillies can be even a little bit active in the FA market is with a significant payroll boost.

Last night sucked, but it's over and done with, time to move on to more pressing matters...like tonight's match-up of Myers vs. Jo-Jo. It's not a "must win", but it's damn near close, because losing tonight coupled with the off day tomorrow could be recipe for disaster. Just win and all is good in the hood.

B_A_P: A World Series appearance, and better yet win, would justify a significant payroll boost.

The way the Phils keep boasting about the number of sellouts they've had this season, it's going to end up being around 50 sell-out crowds I think? They better increase payroll at least somewhat rather than pocket the extra bankroll, regardless of how this season turns out.

50 sell-outs! Reward the fans by spending some of their hard earned dollars to improve the team. But I digress, the most important thing right now is to take care of business and make sure we're in the postseason.

Are there any NYC beerleaguers out there? I'm looking for a bar to watch the game tonight at, I'm so sick of MLB TV on the computer. Does anybody know of a place that shows the Phils games with sound in NYC? Thanks very much.

I disagree, GM. I think every game from here on out is "must win." We have slim leads in both the division and the wild card. I think it would be best if the team plays with the attitude that they have to win every night. Taking care of your own business, and all that. The Mets are a good team and have had great runs throughout the year. We shouldn't have to rely on them losing.

Last nights game was pretty deflating, it felt like the Saturday night game from the last weekend last season...if we can win tonight, I like our chances of being two games up going into the last weekend, with a chance to start Happ instead of Hamels on Sunday.

bap: I think Jason addressed Durbin in an earlier thread. He's apparently eligible for arbitration because he was a non-tender and hasn't hit his ML experience limit yet. Something like that.

A Few points and thoughts, IMO

1. Olly Perez is pitching tonight in a HUGE game in a contract yr.

2. Can Zambrano come back to pitch a strong game after getting rocked last outing?

3. Can the Brewers win again to still apply pressure to the Mets by winning tonight?

4. Good to see if the "real" Brett Myers is back or did he really chan ge when he went to the minors?

5. See if the Phillies bats can come alive or are we going to start another batting slump?

NYC Phillies fans can watch the game at Wogies in the Village. It is on Greenwich, btw 6th and 7th. Great Philly sports bar.

Sloppy game last night... I suppose we were due for one. I guess the good news is that it was certainly winnable. I don't think the loss will weigh heavily on the team. They've been through this before and come out on top. I expect them to do it again. Besides... Mets can't pitch Santana every night!

Even with the lengthy list of Arb eligible free agents, the Phils need to find a right-handed RF/LF type that can hit for average. Too often this team relies on the long ball and simply cannot manufacture runs. Maybe that answer is Dobbs, but if Werth and Dobbs are starters next year that is a lot of uncertainty as they have never been everyday players. Not sure if there is a player that fits that description available as an FA.

Tonight is Brett's chance to be a rockstar. Didn't get a chance last October.

Heavy rain forecast for tommorrow in NYC. Rainout means Mets don't have to scramble for a starter on Saturday, though it might mean a Cubs/Mets game Monday.

adam,
if you live in Hoboken, I heard that Mulligans does Phillies Game Watch.

CJ: If that's the case, then I stand corrected about Durbin.

Carson: A near-miss would also justify a payroll boost, in order to bring in the extra reinforcements needed to get us over the hump next year. Frankly, a payroll boost is warranted no matter what happens. The "justification" is that the Phillies are enjoying their second straight year of record attendance, even after they bumped ticket prices last off-season.

It's frustrating to watch Hamels run up high pitch counts in the early innings. He's obviously spent. I hope he doesn't have to start on Sunday.
In a perfect world the Teflonics will open their wallets for Matt Holliday. Halladay, too.

Wow! That would suck for the Cubs (like I care!) if their last game with the Muts gets rained out and they have to come back and play a Monday game against the Muts!

PJC: Dobbs is left-handed and he makes Burrell look like a Gold-Glove outfielder. I would like to see Dobbs make more starts next year, but at third base, not LF.

My tummy tells me the 2009 Phillies will have Werth as the full-time left fielder & will bring in some cheap, crappy right-handed bat to platoon with Jenkins in RF. I'm not happy about that scenario, but that's what I think will happen. My guess is that the platoon will fail (again) and, by the second half of 2009, Michael Taylor will be called up & gradually start getting more playing time. By opening day 2010, he'll be the starter.

PJC - As a Staten Island phan I am grateful for that info. When they reach the playoffs, I may be able to sneak out.

Actually it would be worse for the Mets, for the sole reason the Cubs are in already and have Home Field throughout. The Mets still have to play to get in. The longer the Season goes the more pressure they are going to face.

A potential Monday Mets/Cubs game would wreak havoc with potential "Last Game At Shea" festivities. Of course, playoffs mess that up too. Yankees did it right-get eliminated early!

In an optimistic vein, my concept for tonight's game is that of homeopathy: as an antidote to a stupid game, we send out a stupid pitcher.

How could that possibly not work?

As to available free agents, the best/worst option is Milton Bradley, who can compile very good statistics while making everyone on the team and in the fan base wish for someone else.

Yeh, it would suck for both teams, the Muts and the Cubs. In view of this fact, I would advise that all good BLers pray for rain!

brio: Neither Holliday nor Halladay are free agents. Opening up your wallet will do no good.

It would be worse for the Mets cause they'd use Santana on either Sunday or Monday, meaning even if they made the playoffs they'd only be able to pitch him once in the NLDS.

Yeah there is some pressure on Myers tonight to rebound but it has largely the past 2 months - the offense has to carry there weight. You score 2 runs and you are going to lose most nights even in the NL.

If the Phils' can get at least 3 tonight against a guy (Reyes) who has basically been wild and generally very ineffective, it has to be counted as a big disappointment. My bet is the Phils are going to need 5-6 runs tonight to win. Up to them to deliever.

The Phillies have to completely collapse to miss the playoffs. And even then, a 1-3 finish makes the Mets have to go 3-2 to win the division. The Brewers would have to go 4-1 to tie for the wild card. Again, this is all with the Phils going 1-3. Relax.

There's a reason the Phils have a 98.9% chance of making the playoffs.

Win the next 4 and have a 100% chance!

BobbyD - Exactly.

Hey, good chance of rain in PHL all weekend long too. So why don't we worry about our situation.

I am going to start a new Amaro BS translator.

Amaroese (a local dialect spoken by a relatively very small tribe from SE PA):

"Nobody who is contributing is going to leave our club because of finances," Amaro said. "There may be other reasons why guys leave, but it won't be because of that."

English translation:

"Of course we are going to bring back guys like Gordon, Taguchi, or Bruntlett but that is obvious to everyone who has remotely paid attention to this season.

As for our arbitration guys like Howard and Hamels, they aren't going anywhere either but you can't bet that we are almost guranteed to handle each poorly and maybe even lose another arbitration hearing because we are so short-sighted/foolish.

Finally, Burrell is as good as gone but we will spin it that we just couldn't come to a reasonable agreement and we are going to count on getting contributions from the likes of Eaton, Jenkins, and Feliz to remain a playoff contender again to start the season. We will only make a move much latter in the season if it ensures that we will sellout games in August/Sept.

Oh, and we are thrilled the Phils are almost guaranteed to make a second straight playoff appearance and Phils will be able to express this job to us by being hit with one of the larger season ticket price increases again in MLB this offseason."

Bubba, they only need to win three to have a 100% chance.

Hey, we can worry about both teams and the rain, can't we?

I mean, we're all worrying about the playoff race, AND next year's roster AND who plays third AND how bad Kendick is AND how lame Wheeler is etc etc etc

EF - Don't forget worrying about jinxing the Phils with premature optimism

andy- Agreed but all 4 would be more fun to watch.

More on rain: Not that forecasts are ever wrong, but the highest pct chance of rain for any of the next 4 days'games in either NY or Philly is 80% tomorrow night in NYC. "Showers-steady rain".

Same pct in Philadelphia, but no game...

BAP: The Tigers non-tendered Durbin, so he is arbitration eligible.

Don't forget also that we will have an extra $10 million freed up with Thome's money coming off the books and declining the Gordon option.

Totally agree with Jason that as bad as Pat's blunder was on the base paths, Shane still had no business pulling the ball to the left side of the infield.

I'm going to the game tonight. Big game for Brett.

I gave up on superstition when my lucky underwear let me down when Adam Eaton started last season's penultimate regular season game. (Knock wood).

Wogie's Bar in NYC is the spot for phillies games

I've gotten into this before, and it's always a losing battle on here, but people need to realize that just "opening up the wallets" is nowhere close to what the problem is with this organization. Gillick opened up the wallets for Eaton, Flash Gordon, Jenkins, and Feliz and Ed Wade opened up the wallets for Thome, Bell, Burrell and others. Spending money WISELY is the name of the game, not just spending money. This front office isn't bad because they're cheap, they're bad because they're too stupid to differentiate a smart investment from a dumb one.

There is NO reason, absolutely none, why you can't build a competitive, winning, long-term succesful team for a payroll around 100 million. I don't disagree that we should be willing to spend some money on bringing in the RIGHT pieces to make this team a WS winner (which, of course, we have a chance to be anyway), but we wouldn't even be worried about that if they hadn't spent stupidly on some of those contracts I listed above.

Can we please move beyond "this team doesn't spend any money"? If you have a smart front office, you can build a winning team with a 100 million dollar payroll (the Rays, Twins, Brewers, and DBacks have all done it with less). The ownership's biggest problem has been not investing in a real long-term front office strategy, not a lack of investment in year-to-year payroll.

Andy: And counting chickens.. I know you're still doing it. You have to be up in the 1000s at this point.

Jack: 100% correct. But it's a losing fight on this blog. All the ills in the world would be cured if the Phils spent as much as the World Series-bound New York Yankees. Money=Success.

Also, I'm not defending the ownership or whoever is in charge financially here at all, I think they're awful and pray for the day we get a real owner. But until someone actually has some financial statements or evidence of how the money works, can we stop the "we've had 50 sellouts, so they have to put the money back into the team." Does anyone have any idea how much revenue they've brought in? Or their total expenses (there's a hell of a lot more to pay for than just player payroll)? Or their profit margin?

Do most people not realize that most sports owners LOSE money on a year-to-year basis? That an owner only sees profit because of long-term valuation when he sells the team?

I get the frustration; trust me, I do. But in terms of this, until someone proves to me they have any idea of what they're talking about, I just can't take it seriously.

Normally, I am pretty pragrammatic and I am recommending everyone really enjoy this run now because this offseason will almost be likely marred by negative PR/stories including Burrell leaving, Hamels/Howard sticky arbitrations, hefty ticket price increases, and the capping of "Golden-Boy" Amaro being named GM sometime in Nov.

Jack: I agree with most of that. In the long term we need better decision making and overall strategy. But I think this offseason is a different story. We're gonna have to raise the payroll to bring back all the current guys (Burrell, Moyer, etc), so the front office may need to get out of their payroll comfort zone to commit to this team being as good as it is this year for the next few years (ie extending the window). And with MLB's unprecendented revenues as well as CBP's ridiculous attendance, well.. they BETTER.

Jack- Amen- we need an organization that invests in this year's needs AND long term organizational depth. That requires smart GM decision making and the owners opening up when that's what it takes to seal the deal.Hope we get that in our next GM but I do have my doubts given the "short list" of candidates.

And a sidenote: for those clamoring for us to go after Sabathia/Sheets/Burnett in the offseason (who knows, I may be one of them). Chris Carpenter may need more surgery, so when all is said and done the Cardinals are probably hoping at most to get 2 good years from him on a $65 million commitment. Long term contracts for pitchers are a huge risk.

Brian G: I agree that the next couple years have a "win-now" mentality, but my point is that it's a lack of long-term strategy that has forced us into that, not cheapness. And yes, the payroll should rise generally because of increased overall revenue in the game. No doubt. I'm not arguing for NOT spending money.

Jack: Agreed. I've fought that battle here myself from time to time.

Jack you do realize two things:

1. No baseball company is a publicly-traded company or held to Sarbanne-Oxley so you have to take the profitability numbers from MLB put out annually from Forbes with a grain of salt. I bet the real profi t numbers are potentially +/- 20% if you consider all operating aspects of a franchise franchise.

Basically, I call BS that most teams don't annually make a profit when all operating aspects are considered. In fact, those with a team network I would bet basically make a real nice tidy profit when all is said and done.

2. Professional sport teams in this country (especially football) the past twenty years have had much more impressive ROI than just about any class of investments on Wall Street over the same period.

When owners cry poverty in any aspect, it is 100% BS.

A little premature celebration going here on BL the other night?

You got a lot to celebrate yerself there buddy. If yer lucky them Mets might not piss it all away again. Come back when yer in the play-offs. Otherwise cram a corncob in it.

The mets trolls are back.

you'll always be a little bro to NYC in everything. how'd last year's division title work out?

Losing a game in the standings is all it takes to bring out the Mets trolls? Hilarious.

Bottom line: We gotta win tonight. We are facing a guy who is 24 and already had Tommy John surgery AND ACL tear. Obviously out of shape and we need to have hittin season again. If we don't, it is a huge uh-oh.

Flay: That may be the case, but I saw the Phantatic doing unspeakable things with your wife Stephanie March. And she LOVED it.

You can't wrap up a division over a team that has blown 29 saves?

MPN: I'm sure she did. She's a freak like that. How's it going to feel when u guys are at home, and a team that has blown at least 29 saves is still playing in October at Wrigley. Amazing.

Actually it is 29 leads not saves. The bullpen has given up 29 mets leads after the 6th inning.

BIG DIFFERENCE!

Umm no. its 29 saves.

Last night, you saw the real Philadelphia Phillies. Dumb players playing dumb, Hamels-toe being a second-rate ace, and the offense not being the '27 Yankees. The ones that show up every September, who get all warm and fuzzy when they see teams overtaking the Mets in the late innings on the scoreboard,are the aberration. Lets go Mets.

I am not responding to mets idiots. Shouldn't they be on metsblog crying about how theya re a better team than the phillies and how omar should have gotton lidge?

Don't feed the trolls.

Also, the phillies are 10-2 in the past 12 games. I think they are allowed a loss.

I truly am amazed that Mets trolls would come on with such an arrogant attitude, full well knowing that Santana will pitch in one more regular season game, and ther bullpen will pitch in six. Not exactly a platform for confidence, especially down a game and a half in the standings.

Yet, of course, we all know that Mets trolls are not known for intelligence, common sense or decorum. I guess it goes with the territory.

He's longball Lidge for a reason. You'll find out sooner or later why they got rid of him in Houston. Just wait. He'll rip your guts out when you least expect it. He's not gonna be perfect into October. "the 3-2 to Manny...SWUNG ON, AND A HIGH FLY BALL DEEP DOWN THE LEFT FIELD LINE, HOOKING TOWARDS THE FOUL POLEEEE, GONE! OFF THE FOUL POLE! A CBP HOME RUN SPECIAL!! LIDGE GIVES UP A BLAST IN THE 9TH, HIS FIRST BLOWN SAVE OF THE YEAR, AND IT COMES IN GAME 5 OF THE NLDS!!"

And yes it's 29 saves, tommyd.

Let me get this right- Mets fans are bragging about how bad their bull pen is????

Flushing Queens !!!

There's always a goat in philly sports, and because Lidge has been going so well, you just KNOW it's going to be him. It's like an undefeated team in NCAA basketball. You'd like them to lose a game before the NCAA tourney.

While the mets are sitting home watching and omar is smoking cubans in the DR laughing to his buddies that he just stole more money from the Wilpons.

Look how riled up you guys get with some poking and prodding. HAHA

If Chase Utley played in NY he would be destroyed daily in both the local and national media. Same with Hanley Ramirez.

Oh you mean like david wright?

Wait... "Game 5"? That must mean... no way.. We're actually gonna win a game in the playoffs!!! Actually two!!! And since it'll come in the top of ninth of an obviously close game, that means we'll have the bottom of the ninth for a shot at winning the whole series!!! WOOHOO! Man, I haven't felt this good in awhile.

Wait, i have an idea for all the mets fans on our site. This is so crazy this idea might just work. Instead of spending all your time trying to get us angry when we are 1 1/2 games up with 4 to play for us. Why don't you actually go to your ballpark and support your team??????

My buddy went last night and said there were more cubs fans there than met fans and the stadium was half full. That is EMBARRASSING!

MVP: Well your buddy was wrong. I'm a mets fan coming here in peace, and your buddy must be a Philly fan. A) Barely any Cubs fans (More Mets fans at CBP, that's for sure), B) 50,000 there. You shouldn't talk about fans infiltrating your ballpark.

Phils R Awesome: Here is the real question, the Phils played .500 ball from June 14 through 31 August, but are 14-7 so far this month while your Pets played 43-26 ball June 14-August 31 and 11-9 ball so far this month, you guys re-took the division lead and then spit it back up. It doesn't matter if it is Willie or Jerry or whoever. Woulda, shoulda, coulda doesn't get it done.

you guys should not even start talking about opposing fans at your ballpark, with all the Mets fans that get into CBP. Done, end of story.

Ignore them and they go away.

the only reason Mutts fans go to CBP is because it is so nice. I'm sure a lot more Philly fans will go to games in NY next year.

Go wave your rally towels. you make more noise without them, by the way.

Dave: He isn't a philly fan, he is a Yankee fan. His fiance is a Met fan. Second of all, don't you know by now the mets lie about their paid attendence, it is a well known fact. Even the FAN says it is a disgrace. Shea will be 3/4 full and they will announce a paid attendence of 55,000. Also, there is a BIG difference between new york/philadelphia fans invading ballparks when we are 120 miles apart compared to cub fans going to Shea which is much further. finally, i was being sarcastic with more cubs fans then mets but i am serious that he said it wasn't a packed house which it should be.

MG, great translation of Junior's proclamation about offseason spending.

Am I at the correct site? I thought I was at Beerleaguer, but it must be a Mets blog site, judging on the comments! Trolls!

Wilson: Are you delusional? That could be the stupidest reasoning I've ever heard. Just dance around the issue a little more. Do you really think there will be as many PHils fans at CitiField next year as there are Mets fans at CBP? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

You're just sooo funny Lake Fred, when are you starring at Carolyn's? I'll get some tickets for the board.

Speaking of rally towels didn't you guys start giving them last night?

Probably already discussed but Did anyone else see Santana's broken bat single where the ball hit the already broken bat and deflected over the fielders glove?

I don't think i've ever seen that before, ever. Hopefully thats not an omen of good fortune to come for them.

And I love how Mets fan complain to Philly fans about bullpen issues. Um.. our all times saves leader is Jose Mesa - your preaching to the chior(sp?).

Tommy: Just more wrong information. No rally towels last night. Check your sources, because you've been wrong about everything that went on last night. Did you know the Mets won? Or did he tell you otherwise.

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