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Monday, October 12, 2009

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Bring on the Dodgers, baby! Great game. Let's go Phillies!

Well, that pretty much does it for me. Everything else at this point is just gravy, and I say that with 100% conviction.

This team has its shortcomings, and it probably will be very, very tough to repeat. But this game and this series proves that there was nothing fluke-ish about last year and they are worthy champions. There's just nothing else for them to prove. Another great year to be a Phillies fan.

For all those who dismiss Charlie Manuel's tactical abilities, Charlie managed his ass off this series. Not every move worked, but in the grand scheme of things, the combination of his moves did.

BOW TO THE MASTER!

epic comeback. congrats fellas - i'll see you all in LA. Let's continue where we left off in LA from last year.

BEAT LA!

One of the best games I've ever seen!

Game 1- Hamels
Game 2- Blanton
Game 3- Lee
Game 4- Martinez
Game 5- Hamels
Game 6- Blanton
Game 7- Lee


I think Pedro gets the call over Happ, because the Dodgers are a right handed dominant hitting lineup. Blanton starts Game 2. Happ shifts to the bullpen.

I would look for Kendrick to be dropped from the NLCS roster and another position player added. The short bench almost came into play in Game 2 and having to put Cairo in the OF tonight, when he hadn't played there in a year, was a mistake waiting to happen. We don't need so many pitchers anyway. Get another position player, no matter how lame at the plate he might be (and yes, that means Gnome) and that will be what the team needs going forward.

I thought the Rocks would win it in 4 and I am glad I was dead wrong. Now that they got by this series, I think they are headed to the WS again. I love the matchup with the Dodgers. I hope on this one, I am right.

And good for Howard. For a guy who has dominated baseball the past few years, in HR's and RBI's, he needed "that" kind of moment. Maybe the biggest hit of his career?

These last two games have to be held up to Games 4 & 5 of the '80 NLCS. Legendary. Exhilarating. Unreal! And we have three days to revel in it!

Edmundo: Manuel ran circles around Tracy in this series. Letting Howard get a pitch to hit against a righty with the game on the line should be a fireable offense for Tracy. I've said my share about the Big Guy, but he's the most dangerous hitter in the world against a righty. They deserved to lose for letting him hit one.

Jim Tracy made Cholly look like a genius in this series.

Why was Street still in the game to face Howard, when he was obviously not sharp? Beimel was ready to go too.

Then, why face Werth, with the washed up Stairs on deck, and Beimel ready?

Awful managing. But we'll take it.

Denny -
Yes, the biggest hit of Howard's career ... awesome clutch hitting. As Jim Tracy just said in the post-game news conference:
"They were down to a strike. They scored three runs, and beat us."

yup, like double switching Ibanez and Big Ben, next ball hit... great catch. No way Ibanez makes that catch. so what do we do with Dodgers - King Cole, Martinez, Lee, Blanton with Happ in the BP or what would you do. Iron-man Erye can only do so much. I think you move happ to the pen, drop bastardo and activate Park, or do you lengthen the bench, my feeling is Bruntlett gives you a little speed

Happ definitely goes to the BP for the NLCS. We should stack the RHP if we can...and Hamels has reverse splits so Lee will be our only true Lefty this time around.

edmundo - The snowout played a huge part but once again Cholly largely out managed the other guy in the dugout.

Cholly did that last year against Torre in the NLCS and let's hope we get a repeat.

Cairo out there in LF was terrifying.

Jim Tracy was very gracious in the postgame interview. I can't imagine how a guy like Bobby Cox would have been.

The Rockies are a good team and they showed a lot in this series. They were undone at times by some questionable moves by Jim Tracy. Put a big right-handed bat in that lineup to balance out some and they should be right in the hunt again next year.

There is a reason the Phillies are defending champions though and this series, more specifically the last inning of Game 4 showed why. Solid at bats, working counts, not trying to do too much, and just making contact.

Also, many argued that Lidge should be off the post-season roster. He is unreliable and will offer nothing. And you certainly don't want him saving 1- run games.

Lidge had 2 saves, both in 1 run games. One was a one out save but it was Lidge commanding his slider as well as he has all year. The other save had him jamming a guy, and using another ones over-eagerness against him. Solid job by Lidge in this series.

So many players who made huge plays to win that game late. Really made up for failings earlier.

Great couple of games by the Fightins.

Now we get to start arguing about how Hamels will pitch against the Dodgers in game 1!

@NEPP

Bobby Cox would've just wailed on his wife in the locker room.

MG complimenting Charlie? The good vibes are flowing on Beerleaguer tonight.

Never a doubt with Brad on the mound.

What a memorable end of the game...

1) Francisco's diving do-or-die catch of Tulowitzki's sinking liner in the 8th...that was a HUGE play.

2) Eyre sawing off Fowler in the 9th was impressive.

3) Lidge throwing nothing but sick sliders after saying publicly that he wasn't going to keep throwing sliders in tight spots because it was too predictable....

4) Chase getting down to the last strike and not chasing pitches. Interesting that the first strike called on him was outside, and Street got tempted to keep throwing it out there hoping to get the same wide strike call. Never happened and after he lost Utley, he didn't get calls throwing away to Howard before getting his 4th pitch more over the plate...and Howard crushed it.

I was thinking the Phils might pitch Lee on short rest in Game 2, but since it's going to be in LA, I think we can use Blanton there instead. I think we'll go:

Game 1: Hamels
Game 2: Blanton
Game 3: Lee
Game 4: Martinez
Game 5: Hamels
Game 6: Lee
Game 7: All hands on deck

they keep showing the Howard double. What the hell was Vic thinking? Not only did he almost miss third, he was watching the play! WTF? I suspect Utley was pissed.

RSB: Was thinking the same thing about the '80 series against Houston. That one was still more stressful and exciting, but this was close.

TTI - Lidge was more impressive tonight even if it was only one batter. His slider was nasty and impressive.

Cholly managed the game right tonight. Putting Madson in that spot was the correct call and I really like how he went with Eyre to start the 9th and refused to just automatically insert Lidge. In fact, that was the best move that Cholly made tonight.

Wiping the slate clean is one of those overused cliches, but it's 100 percent apt for the Phillies and Brad Lidge. Just goes to show how the regular season is just a stepping stone, just like the Rockies.

Lee has never thrown on short rest in his career. I don't see them starting that now.

Vic had to be thinking there was only one out...he makes those mistakes from time to time. Luckily it didn't cost us.

Right... let's not pretend that Charlie, or anyone, believes we're back to Lights Out Lidge of last year.

Charlie will put players in the best position to succeed. That means using Lidge mostly against just RHB unless forced to do otherwise.

The NBA on TNT-ification of postseason baseball is really weird. I keep expecting Kenny and Charles to show up.

This just in -- Rocktober is cancelled!

Oh my god. I don't even care about next series. I agree with Iceman. Another World Series would be awesome, but these past two years have been absolutely unbelievable.

Nothing wrong w/ complimenting Charlie when he manages well, & these past 2 games he has managed extremely well.

Also, in defense of Tracy, Street's numbers are much better vs. LH batters than they are vs. RH batters. And I assume Brad Hawpe's poor numbers vs. LH pitching was the reason he did not appear in this series ... either that, or there's some sort of injury we haven't heard about.

Rocktober is dead. Die, Rocktober, die.

Ruck Focktober!

"Wiping the slate clean is one of those overused cliches, but it's 100 percent apt for the Phillies and Brad Lidge."

Oh I don't know about that. He's thrown about 3 good pitches and looked hittable with poor control in all the rest. I'll be slightly less terrified when he comes into a game after tonight, but only slightly.

Howard delivered 2 huge hits the last two nights because the Rockies didn't have another tough LOOGY after Morales.

The Dodgers have two of the toughest in the league in Kuo and Sherill. Sherill in particular destroys left-handed hitters and it is going to be really interesting to see how Torre uses these two lefties against Utley/Howard late.

Utley, on the non-interference play: "I was anticipating contact. Obviously, it didn't work out that way."

I'll bet if he's ever in that situation again, Chase will be initiating said contact.

Ruck Focktober!

Chase hits the runner and the runner is out...99% of the time.

that was a great interview with "chuck." talking about overcoming your fears. some good quotable stuff. howard is very confident. almost cocky. MVP.

I guess Charlie "gambled and won" again tonight, eh? Time for people to give the man his props. For all the critics who lash out against him and the "apologists," he has outcoached Torre, Maddon, and now Tracy in his last three playoff series.

Tip of the cap to Uncle Cholly. If the Phils can beat the Dodgers and be the first NL team to repeat as champions since the '75-'76 'Big Red Machine', you will start to see both the Phils and Cholly in particular get some well-earned respect and notoriety on the national scene.

so everyone agrees, drop kendrick and bastardo, add Park and Gnome, Happ is coming from the penn

Its not Rocktober its Victober.

Congrats to Howard for 6 RBIs without any homers in this round.

i couldnt even sit down long enough to type comments during the game. insane game. Howard is on fire right now and he didnt even need a long ball this series to drive in a bunch of runs.

Victorino and Werth are maddening players, just absolutely maddening to watch, but god dammit they come up big time and time again. Good thing they dont have NLDS MVPs or Lidge/Lee/Howard/Utley/Werth/Ibanez/Ruiz and maybe even Carlos Gonzalez would win co-co-co-co-co-co-co-coMVPs.

Our big bats seem a lot more confident this time around. Howard, Utley, Vic, Werth, Ibanez have all come up in big spots. Last year it was more role guys...at least it seemed that way.

Other than Feliz not showing up whatsoever, the offense has been great.

It was the second time in Phillies postseason history they've had a game-tying hit in the ninth inning or later (Del Unser in Game 5 of the 1980 World Series).

It is amazing that the team was almost burned by the absence of the Gnome. He'll be back.

Hamels and Utley back in SoCal.
Pedro v. Dodgers.
Stairs v. Broxton.
Ruiz v. Dodgers.

This is hopefully going to be great theater.

Carlos Gonzalez had his coming out party here in the NLDS...absolutely amazing performance by that guy. He was simply incredible to watch. I think Billy Beane might regret that Holliday trade for a long time as Gonzo looks like a star. Ridiculous bat, ridiculous fielding and arm...just insane. We couldn't stop him all series.

MG - i think you are 100% dead on about Kuo and Sherrill out of the Dodgers bullpen. Howard is finally going to have to come thru vs some really nasty lefties if he wants to keep driving in runs late in the game. I guarantee Torre will make sure he faces at least one of them every single game of the series.

They keep comparing us to the Big Red Machine....I now coin us the Dead Red Wrecking Crew

I would have gone Ibanez for NLDS MVP before tonight. Lee locked it down for two starts. Lidge would be the feel-good recipient. But it's hard to deny Howard with the way he's swinging.

Scott - How did Cholly "gamble tonight?" He used Madson in a key spot when it was clear that Lee was gassed. Using Eyre made sense too with the lefties due up and then he made the move with Lidge vs. Tulowski. There really wasn't anything that Cholly did tonight that was really "a gamble."

Feliz has had plenty of big hits, and he will again. No doubt about it.
Shocking to hear the accolades for Cholly. It's about time!

Phillies = Dead Red Wrecking Crew

thephaithful: great point on howard. no bombs but still a great series. reminds me a bit of when he first came up he actually looked like pure hitter with a graceful swing - thought he was going to be a 300 hitter (and he was that first year).

TNA - and to a lesser extent:
Park back in LA

Victorino v. Kuroda(is that who threw at his head in the "my ribs not my face" AB?)

little pansy whiny bitch pillow biting washed up Russel Martin v. everyone who throws a called strike against him

The way the NLCS has scheduled rest days, Torre and Manuel are going to be burning through their BPs every game. TBS better allot 4+ hours for each game.

u still think this is the best team i've ever seen in Philly. and i've been a fan since stan lopata was behind the plate and whitey was in center.

MG - I was using a quote from another thread, by someone who shall remain nameless. Perhaps a bit of sarcasm on my part. I get a bit weary of those who don't give the man any credit at all. While the quote was about last night's game, the point was that when things go well, people attribute it to luck. Sometimes, there's more to it than that.

Dead Red Wrecking Crew

@ That Dude: it's not going to happen.

Scott - Even if Lidge had failed tonight, it wouldn't have been on Cholly. Cholly limited Lidge's exposure and put him in a spot where he was in a decent position to succeed. Lidge executed and the Phils won.

@That Dude

Stop being that dude.

Somehow I have to figure out how to name my first born a combination of Carlos Ryan and Brad Lidge. I made a pact with the big guy upstairs that if they were all instrumental in making great plays that I had to involve their names according to the sex of the child. Oh and I am sorry totally drunk here hope there aren't any typos. After we won tonight my wife made me wear the towel I had on my head out to the grocery store since I insisted even after we let up two runs we'd win and if we did I'd wear the stupid thing on my head.

May we beat the #$%#ing @#%^ out of LA so I can mock my friends out there

Whatever dudes...the team needs a nickname as we vault into history

Anyone else realize that Utley hit .429 in the 4 game series? Talk about clutch.

Going out on a limb here but I think Utley will win the Gold Glove this year.

God, Brett Myers is such a punk. I can't wait till he's gone.

oh its gonna happen

What did Myers do now?

Other than hopefully not make the NLCS roster.

MG - I agree, and my point appears to be missed, but I'm cool with that. We won, and that's all that matters. If people want to value Charlie's role in the process, that's great. I hope they do. He's earned it. If they don't, then it is due to their shortsightedness. That's not directed at you, BTW.

Doohickey: What inspired that non-sequitor?

Myers just dumped beer on Cliff Lee as he's being interviewed.

Brett Myers is such a dufas. Watching MLB Network and Lee is doing an interview - Myers doesn't just dump beer on Lee's head like a normal person, he sprays him in the eyes. No wonder the guy can't get out of his SUV.

Utley posted a .556 OBP in the NLDS (6 hits, 4 walks in 18 PA) He did his job of getting on base in front of the big bats.

Geez... Myers sprays Amaro and now dumps some beer on Lee. Big F-in deal.

One thing UC needs to do is have a one on one with Pete Happy. Take a freakin' pitch in a big spot!

Not to look to next year already, but who would you rather have? Feliz or Atkins?

Myers will be lucky to get a major-league deal in the off-season. I see him getting one of those incentive laden deals where he needs to perform to make anything at all.

I think Kuroda is injured, no? Depending on how his BP session/sim game goes tomorrow, he may or may not displace Garland as I don't think Weaver is going anywhere after how he pitched against STL. But yes, I'd like to see Vic vs. Kuroda.

A bad matchup historically is Manny vs. Lee and/or Blanton. He owns those two (as well as Eyre).

Last year, Myers intimidated the Dodgers and got into their heads. I doubt anybody's going to intimidate the Dodgers this year -- this could be a very very hard fought series between the two best NL teams over the past two years.

You know what Scott, it isn't like I've never given Manuel any credit. It isn't like I was one of the ones who bashed him incessantly from the start. He has his good points and his bad points. When I don't agree with him, I'll say so. Overall, obviously he works very well for this team and I'm happy for his success. So sorry that my actual perspective might make it harder for you to try to stick it in my face.

Considering our playoff revenue and if we manage to make it back to the WS, we could probably afford Figgins.

Myers pulled the same gag on Cliff Lee that he pulled on Rube after the division was clinched. Just a "look at me!" act of childishness from a guy who contributed not much to this series. Let Cliff have his moment.

CJ: Amen. I hadn't realized clubhouse celebrations were supposed to be such staid, formal affairs now.

According to Lee, Howard went down the bench in the 9th and said, "Get me to the plate, boys."

Jimmy in a postgame interview said, "This isn't our last party."

Chase said, in reply to whether there was a moment after the BS when he thought, oh well, at least we get to try again tomorrow,
"No. We always think we can come back."

Great quotes from great competitors.

CJ: He's just such a spotlight hog. I don't think it's a big deal, but he comes off as a total jerk. Right in Lee's eyes as he's being interviewed...it would be OK if he'd actually done something in this series. LOL

Why is Myers even on the post-season roster? He serves no purpose.

The more I think about it, the more I think it will be Pedro in Game 2. He's stuff is much more suited for the LA ballpark than for the Bank.

Pedro is fresh and is a great competitor. You can so see him brushing Manny off the plate.

Speaking of, by when do the rosters for the NLCS have to be submitted?

Brad Lidge the all time NL leader in postseason saves...

Tug is tied for 4th.

Ryan Ruidge?

Phantastic finish. Mitch Williams apparently predicted the way the top of the ninth played out and the comeback. I don't mind a homer every once in awhile.

Love to have Park back for the NLCS. Pedro in the NLCS could be fan.

Pedro has a career 2.93 ERA in Dodger Stadium in 86 IP.

Blanton has a career 4.09 ERA in 11 IP in Dodger Stadium.

Meant to say "fun" there, but "fan" works, too.

if Pedro is gonna pitch I would think you want him pitching in Dodger stadium, with it being apitcher's park. If the series goes 7 you could theortically get Hamels in 1&5 and Lee in 3 and 7.

CJ and G-Town - did you guys even see it? it's not the celebration or the fact that he sprayed beer, it's how he did it and how he runs around like a child AND the glaring look of "you're a clown" that Lee gave him. Not making it a huge deal, just saying Myers is a child and it's scary that he has children of his own.

Wait complaints about Myers celebration antics???? OH bloody 'ell you kids are way serious, taps my foot waits waits and realizes wow the lot of you on about this way jealous!

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