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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

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Madson still too much in love with his newfound fastball. That's got to be addressed. Unlike Lidge, stuff and/or health isn't his problem, it's pitch selection.

Other than that, the biggest factor in the loss was the inability to hold the Braves off after they had scored. Each time the Phils put anything across, the Braves answered right back.

It's not a crushing loss, just one we're more accustomed to seeing the Phils take, especially in that ballpark.

Repost from previous thread...

This loss was not nearly as bad as most of the others over the past two weeks. Howard's ground rule double easily scores Utley. Vic was completely robbed on two hits because they hit the pitcher - one of them happened right before Utley's home run. Werth hit a an outright bee-bee to Chipper Jones for that double play. I know, all part of the game, but this loss didn't feel like they gave it away.

On the other side of that equation, though, we do have some places that were pathetic tonight. 1) Rollins. If he is on base once or twice tonight, chances are he scores and we don't go extras. HIs last strikeout was just aweful. Madson - what the hell is up with this guy? And Park/Bako - I'd love to know who called that pitch (and if it was Bako, why Park didn't call him off). They had two strikes and a base open - no way he should throw a fastball there. Someone needs a talking to on that.

Honestly, I'm just happy the team didn't lay down and die against Gonzalez. That's what I was expecting.

Tonight was just one of those nights where the Phils didn't catch a break.

1. Vic's lines a ball that goes off of Lowe's right buttcheck and somehow Lowe manages to throw him out. Next batter is Utley and he hits a solo shot instead of a 2-run jack.

2. Prado's HR which just clear the fence by no more than 6-9 inches. Maybe a foot at the most.

3. Prado's 2B down the line to tie it up wasn't fair by more than 6 inches and went just foul after getting past the 1st base bag.

4. Werth strokes a ball that Chipper takes a blind stab at and they manage to turn it into a pretty DP.

Problem is that the Phils don't catch a break by catching a weak starter they can pound either this series.

From Jayson Stark's twitter feed:

Ryan Madson since June 16: 9.52 ERA, 3 blown saves, 1 loss that wasn't a blown save, 16 baserunners in 5 2/3 IP

Forget that goofy Howard ground-rule 2B that cost the Phils a run early too.

As for the Braves, it was got tiring listening to Wheels tonight say how banged up they were and about all of the guys they were missing.

Yeah they have 6 guys on the DL but besides maybe Infante and Bennett not one of those guys is a meaningful contributor.

Wheels really thinks the Braves miss the likes of Reyes, Carlyle, and Norton? Each of those guys are stiffs and the Braves are likely to get just as good (if not better production) from their replacements.

More I see of this Braves team and the more they look like a fraud contender. If they were going to make a move in the standings, it would have been the last couple of weeks when they called up Hanson and got McLouth. They just don't have enough offense and their middle relief right now is as shaky as the Phils.

Plus, supposedly they are pretty tapped on the payroll side and aren't likely to make any kind of meaningful move to take on salary at the trading deadline.

If the winner in the NL East only wins 85-86 games, I guess the Braves have a shot but it is hard to see this team being a legit contender.

Well at least we didn't blow a 10-1 lead to Baltimore as papelban and the red sox just did. Though I'm sure the pen could have managed that too.

In other words, Madson stinks since the premiere of 'The Pen.' Hamels blamed his slow start on gigs for E!. Did J-Roll go on "Jon & Kate Plus 8"?

I'm fairly sure that this new Phillie nuisance is Martin Prado. This guy might be unknown to the baseball fans of the Delaware V, but to us transplants, he's played some good ball going back to last year. I've seen him along the lines of a pure hitter. Solid contact maker.

This all or none offense is really sorry right now. Jimmy just doesn't know which end is up but at least it hasn't affected his defense too much post vacation. Still, this lineup, when it actually actively works counts, is snake bit.

People keep talking about the lack of starter going deep into games but they have a point:

Hamels - 5.78 IP/start
Blanton - 5.91 IP/start
Moyer - 5.54 IP/start
Happ - 6.33 IP/start

Phils have only one starter (Happ) who is averaging more even 6 IP/start.

The vaunted "Innings Eater" Blanton hasn't even given the Phils at least 6 IP in 6 of his 15 starts including tonight. Moyer has only down that in 5 of his 15 starts.

As far as the pitching goes, it's really time for Hamels to stand up and be counted. I'd like to see a 'Curt Schilling in post season'-esque run for his next few starts. If Jay Happ can keep up his control, even better. With the way the East is, a move to get a quality starter to log some innings could make things a lot cozier for the Fightins. Especially when you realize that both Utley and Howard are likely to go on second half rampages and Jimmy, well, he couldn't get any worse.

Jimmy Rollins is an automatic out. Plain and simple. I used to bash Lieberthal towards the end of his time for being a so called automatic out but even he would go on to put up better stats than this crap! AND HE WASN'T A LEAD OFF HITTER EITHER! I had enough!

I said it in the last thread, but it bears repeating.

Charlie (specifically his stubbornness and pandering to Jimmy Rollins "role") is making me miss and appreciate Larry Bowa more with each passing game.

At this point, it's difficult to keep blaming Jimmy. He can't hit the ball worth a damn, but he's still a tremendous defensive shortstop. He isn't without value to this ballclub, but at the end of the day, he doesn't fill out the lineup card.

Charlie's extended benching of Rollins and his stubborn refusal to remove him from the leadoff spot is the most irrational and destructive decision making I've seen from a Phillies manager in quite some time.

absolutely right Mac. Why not drop him in the 7 spot, between Feliz and Ruiz? I can't watch the games from out here in CA, but I knew before I glanced at the sheet that he couldn't have been better than 1 for 5. And why on earth does he swing at the first pitch after the count sat at 3-0 for Blanton in the previous at bat? Like Larry Anderson said - if all else fails, work the count!

I think the plan must be to keep Rollins at leadoff until he goes below .200. At his present rate, that's two more games. I don't know what else can be done - thought the four days off was a good idea. Of course, maybe he'll get four hits tonight. You know, like Martin Prado. Martin freakin' Prado! For that matter, Gregor Blanco. Sorry, this should have been a win. Jeesh.

I didnt want last night, but was it more of Madson throwing fastballs down the middle in 0-2,1-2 counts?

Ryan "Where is my changeup" Madson

Who's this "Martin Brado" dude? He's a hellevua lot better than "Martin Prado".

*I understand playing J-Roll, because sadly enough he's still our best option at SS, but why bat him leadoff?

Interesting: ESPN is now putting a #P stat in its boxscores. It would be interesting to see just how many pitches Jimmy sees per night. I don't know the usefulness of this stat since we already have P/PA but its still interesting.

Confession: While registering my allotted 25 All-Star votes, I found myself compelled to vote for only a single player on the AL team... Pat Burrell. I am part of the reason that is a ridiculous process.

Thanks for the perspective on the game. I had been gloomy, feeling it was one they should have won. However, there indeed were a number of breaks that cut against the Phils. I also feel Rollins is due to break out (regress to the mean?) although it is getting way late.

I remain concerned about the cycle the team seems to be in. Starters can't get through more than five or six innings. Relief pitchers are not getting the job done and are overworked to boot. This is pure speculation, but I would guess the offense is probably getting a little sick of putting up runs and then having them given right back. I would also speculate that some people might be getting a bit short with Rollins at this point.

Probably not a happy clubhouse.

Off Topic...What could we get for Savery? Why isn't his name in any of these trade talks?

The loss overshadowed a brilliant game by Pedro Feliz. If I'm making the line-up card tonight, it starts with Victorino, Feliz, and Utley.

Kurt Racer - Yeah, I believe the game tying double pitch to Prado was a 1-2 pitch.


What really had me fuming was once Madson got ahead in the count, he became obsessed with picking the running off first. Get the f'n hitter! Of course he throws one away to advance the runner. In the postgame, Charlie blew it off saying "well he would've scored from first anyway". What he fails to mention is that if Madson hadn't thrown the ball away, Howard would've been holding the runner on, and therefore in much better position to field that poke down the right field line. He would've had at least a good shot to knock it down, if not even get the guy out.

New post

I didn't join the game until right before Blanton was pulled, but I thought it wasn't that decision was strictly offensive-based. Blanton had a bat in his hand, but there were 2 runners on with 2 outs, so Charlie wanted to maximize the opportunity to score. (Didn't work - Coaste struck out.) I assumed if the Phils had the lead there and no runners on, Blanton would have taken his at-bat and been out to pitch one more inning. Only 1, probably, since he was at 93 pitches, but at least he could have pitched 6 innings.

Lopez to start Friday's game.

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