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Thursday, October 15, 2009


From the previous thread:

NEPP, your analysis of Myers last three years is good, but remember, this is baseball, where pitching is at a huge premium.

I don't know what $$$ Myers will get next season or where he'll be, but there will be more than one team willing to take a chance on the guy.

They'll take the chance he can fully recover his previous form.

If so, he's a #2 starter on some MLB teams - #3 on a lot of them.

All that enormous, unnecessary pressure seemed to help in '08. I don't know that it's a hindrance, or that a child will help. Distraction, especially in the next couple weeks, seems like the far more likely inference.

Can anyone explain what FRANK"get-me-to-the-plane-boys"Copenbarger meant when he told Leslie Gudel on CSN that he "lost the LA hotel reservation"?

Mayberry would have been a better bench option than Bruntlett, but if the option is Bruntlett or another pitcher, Bruntlett is the easy choice. We only used 10 pitchers last series, but had an instance where a pitcher had to pinch-run and an instance where a guy had to play LF who had never done it before.

While you want to avoid fighting the last war, obviously, it seems clear to me that the last roster spot is better used on a position player than a pitcher.

While this argument carries over, I'll step in to say: congrats, Jason. And I hope you're right.

This is the kind of incomplete analysis that drives me crazy:

Ted Keith at SI writes about 5 keys to the series, and uses JRoll's season-long stats as though they have more relevance than his 2nd half stats when he broke out of the black-hole-of-a-slump he experienced.

JW - Congrats!

I am in the same boat as you are. I have my first born due on 1/1. We are having a little girl. Our parenting classes just started and I realized as well, that I don't know anything at all.

Wish you guys the best of luck on a healthy birth.

My 2nd is due in November, and I'm still learning..haha

Congratulations, Jason, and God's blessings to you and your growing family.

As the father of three children (ages 6, 3, and 1) blessed with a jobs over the past years that afforded me ample time off around the births of my children, I can't imagine flying to the other end of the country just days after my child is born. I hope the birth of his first child is an inspiration to him on the mound, but I would understand if Cole is distracted, weary, and even emotionally torn by leaving his spouse and child behind as he goes to work (a burden lots of working moms and dads deal with everyday).

Either way, congrats to you, Jason, and to the Hamels family ... and Let's Go Phillies!

On another note, this is the Phils' OPS based on the number of times facing pitchers:

1st .750
2nd .782
3rd .859
4th+ 1.024

RP .757

The Dodgers:

1st .698
2nd .714
3rd .861
4th+ .830

RP .776

First off, congratulations. Secondly, there is no such thing in my experience as a "sound" sleeping infant. I have a 6 year old (who ironically turned 6 on Oct. 9, the same day as Cole had his son), a 3.5 year old and a 10 month old. Life is a blur. Havn't gotten a full night sleep in ummm... lets say about 6 years now. A crazy but good blur. I can't imagine leaving on a 4 hour flight days after your wife gives birth... Hopefully he can focus, and hopefully I am wrong but I agree with Tray that it is more likely to be a distraction.

Then again, if I recall, Geoff Jenkins had a child last year in the playoffs and he had a rather clutch hit I'd say...

The article made me cry /tear

"Ted Keith at SI writes about 5 keys to the series, and uses JRoll's season-long stats as though they have more relevance than his 2nd half stats when he broke out of the black-hole-of-a-slump he experienced."

Really struggled for most of last series. Of course, I'll agree that the second half is more predictive than 4 games.

congrats dude. how early is too early to teach the kid to throw a slider?

I have 27 & 21 year olds...I still haven't figured it out. I guess I should be out hitting the bars.

Congratulations, my friend. I have 3 from ages 6 months to 11 years. Just wait until you have serious baseball conversations with young men and women who are the age of this bundle of joy. Scares the heck out of you. It passes quickly, so enjoy it, every moment.

JW - I thought your son was going to be a third baseman, not a pitcher. (Or don't you think he'll be tall enough?)

Agree with awh, Myers will not have to settle for a $1M-3M contract. He's got a plus fastball and one of the best curves in the major leagues. The 10-cent head may cost him a few bucks but the million-dollar arm will carry the day. At age 29, he's got plenty of years ahead of him.

Congrats J! I don't know if there will be a Reading Eagle in 25 years for him to follow you to, but your little man could do worse things in life.

I have a 13 month old, and her first game was Game 2 of the NLDS last year where Shane hit the granny off CC...not a bad way to start your Phillies fandom! By the way, all babies are light sleepers, for the first few months anyways.

As for this series, we need to bomb first and bomb heavy, because I don't want to see Sherill or Broxton get a chance to shut us down...other than the BP, we are better than LA...if J-Roll and Vic get on base, we are good as gold!

Hey congrats JW!

Phils in 5. I think Hamels will have his head straight tonight and pitch a good one, and we win 3-2.

Congrats Jason!! That's awesome.

the key to every single game is going to be to score early and often, i think we have the advantage in the lineup, rotation, and defensively. their bullpen is so much better than ours it's embarrassing. however, if we can get to their starters early, we can stretch out that pen and tire them out by the end of the series. i for one am looking forward to seeing whether or not broxton poops his pants if matt stairs steps into the box against him.

also, thanks to JW for planning his first child for the offseason. too bad cole didn't have the same foresight.

i kid, i kid...

Congrats JW! I think this will take the pressure off Cole...the waiting for labor is painful and distracting. Now that's done, and everyone is home and healthy.

clout: Myers has a plus fastball? Since when? 2005?

CY: if your baby's due 1/1 ask the Dr. to induce on 12/30. It's a hefty tax deduction for 1 day of expenses.

Question - is Myers going to Clearwater to keep loose for a potential World Series gig, or has he been cut loose?


Why would you cut Myers loose? If something bad happens in the bullpen or to a starter and you pull the series out anyway, you might need him.

I think the ship has sailed on Myers as a #2 like everyone hoped. He might be an ok #3 if he can stay healthy. I think being a 2nd tier club's closer for $6-ish mil is his best case scenario. Maybe the Astro's or some other pitching poor club'll take a shot on him as a starter.

Myers HAD a plus fastball. He has shown no signs of it in a long time.

great post--congrats.

awh: interesting numbers....

are those numbers referring to the 2009 season when they face opposing starting pitchers? or within a game as they get through the lineup? does it include relief pitching?

duder, the stats are from 2009 team pages on

"RP" stands for relief pitching.

Congrats Jason! We are due in late April which means our annual spring training trip next year is postponed. The wife was not happy about that. She looks forward to that trip probably more than I did.

Is everyone else getting the little icon squares? I'll post something on it. Typepad is phasing in their new format. I'm hot and cold on it. I think the way it works is you sign into a typepad account and upload your own image.

As a father of 3 little ones (yes, I am prolific) I can tell you I threw 8 shut out innings the next, I it was on playstation, but does that matter?

Congrats JW! I think, however, that Hamels' subpar performance all year has had less to do with mental issues and more to do with a tired arm.

these icon squares are gay

Congratulations, Jason. That is fantastic news.

I can only tell you two things with certainty.

1. Enjoy and grab every second of it because it may be a cliche, but it goes by quicker than you can imagine, and you only get one chance per child to be a Dad.

2. There is absolutely no way on earth to predict how this will or will not impact Cole's game. Hope you are right on how it turns out!

Congrats JW~

I have a 23-year old young man who is a federal officer and 2 Step-sons, ages 22-and 13. They can be the greatest of the great at times and at other times they make me want to invest heavily in Jack Daniels, and I don't drink that much. Funny thing is no one really teaches you how to be a parent.

Teach him how to a hard, heavy sinker, a sharp slider, a big 12 to 6 curve to go along with 98-mile-an-hour heat. This way, 18-20 years from now he can take care of you rather than the other way around.

On the NLCS, I think it'll be very tough to re-peat, but I think they can. They could also get buried. LA is a better version of the Rockies. But Like I said prior to the NLDS, if we hit, we win.

It's a big moment, JW-
here's hoping the little one doesn't end up a Met fan to spite the old man.

"these icon squares are gay"

Does gay=bad?

Jbird - I am hoping for a 12/30 or 12/31 delivery date. Although having the first baby of the decade would probably have some sort of benefit (long shot obviously).

I am getting the golf clubs ready for her. That's the only thing I can think of. I have only brothers and this will be our first girl on my side of the family. Little nervous.

I will say that in my few years of playing fantasy baseball and fantasy hockey it's always money to play the guy who just got back from attending the birth of their child. I'd even make short term waiver claims based on that little note. It's saved my butt a few times. Position players often seem to celebrate with HRs or goals.

I don't have any anecdotes for pitchers/goalies, but I'm going to go ahead and predict a Cole Hamels gem tonight.

Thanks for the tip Mick O. I just put me and Mrs. Beard's 401K on the Phils to win tonight!

That Dude - really? REALLY?


Everything is set up for Hamels to have a great game tonight--pitcher's park, home cookin', late day/early evening, team he has historically dominated.

Now, get out there and do it, Cole!

Congrats, JW!

My first child (a boy) was born in early August. Two months later I'm still pretty amazed & overwhelmed (in a good way) by the whole experience, so I have no earthly idea where Cole's head will be tonight. I feel I can state that w/ a fairly high degree of certainty, as I'm not even sure where my own head is at yet. Anyway, I hope Hamels pitches well, but I understand if his focus isn't quite there. I can't imagine anything more humbling & intimidating than being a new parent.

BTW, a great question I overheard the other day: "Will Cole Hamels be a worse Dad in the daytime than he is at night?" :-D

Congrat JayDub!

Unlike Cole, at least you had the brains to schedule around baseball season, haha.

I'm hoping Vic, Utley and Werth have success against Kershaw tonight; they seem to be best matched up against the young lefty. It looks like Kershaw has fallen in love with his slider over the past month. Against righties, he throws mainly fastball, slider, fastball, fastball, fastball, slider, etc., and against lefties, he throws a good mix of sliders, curves and fastballs. He seems to like throwing fastballs high outside the strikezone because hitters usually chase so the Phillies will need to be patient and not go after them. He and Martin have been doing a very good job of changing the eye level for each batter. All in all, this guy could be very tough. He doesn't pitch much like a 21-yr old.

I can't imagine the Phillies would leave Myers off of the NLCS roster if they had any intention of bringing him back next season. I think we've likely seen the last of him in Philly (and said that after his last relief appearance against the Rox).

hh, I suspect you are right about Myers, though you never know.

Charlie and Dubee have shown me something this season - that is, the ability to think outside of the box a little bit, to take a little risk in unusual situations.

Myers may very well have been held back because they really don't think he's healthy enough.

Also, I think the choice in this series boiled down to him or Bastardo. Bastardo came in and K'd Giambi in the last series, and there is a very good reason to have another lefty in the pen (besides Eyre) who can be brought in earlier in the game.

I'll answer that question with a question:

Who is the hitter in this series with these splits?:

vs RHP .304 .378 .525 .903
vs LHP .252 .317 .382 .700

vs RHP .302 .390 .571 .960
vs LHP .194 .283 .345 .629

Also, who is this hitter in the NLCS?:

vs RHP .289 .356 .440 .796
vs LHP .262 .322 .403 .725

Or this one?:
vs RHP .301 .358 .465 .823
vs LHP .278 .345 .410 .755

probably ethier

I know people scoffed at the notion Cole was affected by the prospect of the baby on the way, but it is very likely that affected him.

John Kruk said last night on Sportscenter that 10 years ago he would've laughed at that line of thought. Then he had 2 kids and understands why it would mess with your head. When women go into labor there are tons of things that can go wrong and if you're not there I would imagine that only intensifies it. You can try to shut that out but it can't be easy one bit.

I think tonight we see a little more of the Cole we saw in last post-season. He has a healthy baby (and wife), and he's going back to L.A., and (maybe most importantly) he's a proud guy and he knows he stunk last week. He is going to be looking to redeem himself. I hope it works out because if he can get us Game 1 tonight then it takes a bunch of pressure off Pedro or whomever goes in game 2, because at worst- we split in LA

A win tonight puts pressure on LA and Padilla to win Game 2.

IMO if the Phils don't win tonight, they lose the series. I know that's a fairly extreme statement, but Hamels is the key.

How many babies has Cole had this year?

HH - that really is an extreme statement. After the heart this team has shown over the last 1+ years, I think you have to believe that they can 4 out of 6 games.

BB - I was thinking that same thing. I am sure that it certainly distracted Hamels to some degree but what about the other 9 day starts this year where Hamels largely stunk it up?

Lineups announced. Phils is standard:
Rollins, Vic, Utley, Howard, Werth, Ibanez, Feliz, Ruiz, Hamels

Furcal, Ethier, Ramirez, Kemp, Blake, Loney, Belliard, Martin, Kershaw

Congratulations JW. As a first-time father of a six month old I can tell you my only solace has been knowing that people have been raising these little buggers for millions of years. If some brain-dead cave man can keep a baby alive, I'm sure us baseball obsessed geeks can. Well, mine just woke up, so I have to stop playing on the internet.

So after a series in which they came from behind twice on the road in a 24-hour span against a ridiculously good home team, if the Phils lose game one on the road they lose the series?

It takes you guys the blink of an eye to jump off this team's bandwagon.

How about this statement: If Hamels doesn't pitch well tonight, they lose the series? I think that's a little different b/c he could pitch well and they could still lose (and I don't just mean b/c of the BP - It could be a 1-0 loss). I think that in that case, they could come back from a loss, but if indications are that he isn't going to pitch well this series, than the fact that he's slated twice and is one of our two aces, does not bode well.

Likewise, if Brad Lidge and company can pitch well, then we are in business. The Dodgers have a lot of come-from-behind wins, and so do the PHils, but their BP is more lock-tight than ours (vastly so). The Phils tendency has been to score in mid-to-late innings, so we'll see what happens.

Re: being patient with Kershaw, I could swear I heard somewhere (here? Comcast Sportsnet?) that he throws first pitch fastballs and that could be the time to strike. I confess I know nothing about it.

May I just say it's great to hear so many dads here who seem pretty involved with their kids? Guess the workaholic types don't have time to frequent blogs. Congratulations to you, JW, and to CY and all the other expecting and new dads.

I just saw something funny, want to pass it on. Zolecki's blog has a link to Kevin from "The Office" taunting a Phanatic bobblehead. I personally think the Phanatic is the best mascot around, bar none, but this clip is hilarious even if it supports the Dodgers. (And someone ought to make one turning it around to the PHillies favor/Dodgers detriment - A challenge to some creative type out there!)

Sorry to post so much. I'm getting excited.

Anyone else a little concerned about Park coming off like 3 weeks w/o facing live batters? Pedro too....Guess we'll see....

Iceman, excellent point.

But rememeber, this is Philly, where fans can go from ecstacy to despondence and back in 3 pitches.

Grrrr, that should say "ecstasy". Damn typos.

I've said this before. Last season's WS weather screw up worked to my advantage as a Dad and the Phils too.

My 7 year old would normally have been in bed, but the because of the early ending to the game she was awake to experience the thrill of victory.

BTW, she was good luck. Periodically she left my side (potty break, get a drink) and something bad always happened - like the amazing catch by the Rockies 2nd baseman. After that she was not allowed to leave my side until the game was over.

uh, meant Rays, not Rockies.

Yo, newer thread

Congratulations. I have 2 kids myself. It is quite a ride. Good Luck.

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