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Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Here here [Raises glass]

it's an understatement to say how crucial game one is..
so may i just say..
Go Phils..Bring it on Home..!

59 years since the Whiz Kids were swept by the ancestors of these arrogant, corporate Yanks.

Return the favor 2009 Phils .

Great thread header! Let the games begin!

A split in New York is absolutely pivotal.

I hate when my posts get stuck at the end of the thread. Hence, reposted from last thread:

So far, the prediction with the highest likelihood of coming true is Grey's prediction about a lot of angst & a lot of alcohol consumption for Phillies fans.

As for the series . . . at the risk of stating the obvious, Game 1 is key. In the 20 post-season series since 2007, the teams that have won Game 1 have won the series 19 times. Sabathia is terrific, but it's curious to me that everyone (Phillies fans included) thinks of him as such an unstoppable force, & no one ever says the same about Lee. Yet, Lee has had a better ERA+ for 2 years in a row & his winning percentage over that 2-year span is actually better (Lee is 36-16; Sabathia, 36-18), even though Sabathia has spent 3/4 of that period playing for playoff teams while Lee has spent 3/4 of it playing for a terrible team.

I pick the Phillies to win tonight's game 3-2, and I pick them to win the series in 6. Series MVP: Jimmy Rollins. And let the record reflect that this prediction is made with a clear mind & is irrevocable; it supersedes anything I might say during the course of tonight's game.

I'm so sick of all of the hoopla surrounding the NY Post article, the arrival of the "frillies" to New York, and the trash talk between members of the two cities. I've received calls/texts/emails from people in New York I haven't talked to in YEARS. I'm just ready for baseball already!

The Phillies aren't going to win because cheesesteaks are better than pizza. We're not going to lose because our murder rate is higher than in NYC. These are just some of the ridiculous facts and figures I've seen put forth by newspapers in both cities.

JW you are absolutely right - this series will come down to the minutiae. If either team makes baserunning gaffes like the Angels did in the ALCS or the Twins made in the ALDS, that team will find it incredibly difficult to come back. If either team can't convert with a runner on 3rd and less than 2 out, that team may not be able to overcome that. If either team makes a crucial error like Chase did in game 2 - throwing the ball into the stands and thereby allowing an extra run to come in - that team will meet its demise.

I feel like Tim McCarver with this brilliant gem haha, but the winner of this World Series will have to play absolutely flawless baseball (or as close to it as possible) in order to win this hard-fought series, because both of these teams are just so, so good and will make you pay for any single mistake, however innocuous it may seem.

Looks like the game could start late tonight - 50% chanee precip. through 7pm, only 20% as of 8pm onward.

Wind blowing in to the 1B side of home plate. Should blow some long balls back in.

I'm agitated and psyched up already.

Did I mention in my predictions post that I'll be hungover for 4 out of 6 of these games? No? Well, now I have.

I'm agitated and psyched up already.

Did I mention in my predictions post that I'll be hungover for 4 out of 6 of these games? No? Well, now I have.

Get Howard to the plate, boys.

Let's go Phillies!

"The Phillies aren't going to win because cheesesteaks are better than pizza. We're not going to lose because our murder rate is higher than in NYC. These are just some of the ridiculous facts and figures I've seen put forth by newspapers in both cities."

Very well put, diggity. I was so impressed that I made it my facebook status update! Kudos.

In my endless search for any and all reading material related to tonight's match-up, I accidentally stumbled onto this through

I found the end of the internet - I guess I just have to sit and wait patiently for the game now.

The bad thing about playoff baseball is that when the game is over I finally realize I've had about 5 too many.

riot punch in coke cans. it's the only way to be sure.

Icky Jayson Stark article today on ESPN. According to him, if the Phillies win this thing, then the "Team of the Decade" is...the Red Sox!

Who knew.

Oh, I can hardly get through today...

Nice post, BAP. Optimistic! Wow, that's great! Love to read that, for it makes me believe more in our Fightins. (Since even though I picked the Yankees, I'm just waiting for the Phils to prove me wrong and stupid at the earliest possible moment.)

Davey Lopes has to be sporting wood just thinking about the Phils getting to run on Johnny Damon's arm (when he's in the field, that is...).

Wait, this series doesn't determine anything more than who gets another trophy? It isn't about life and which city is better? Not about food?

I heard something funny on MLB Network a few days ago, after ALCS Game 5, I think. When fans from both teams were writing passionate emails decrying the moves of their managers, very upset. The analysts thought it was funny/odd that people were so emotional. Larkin said, "It's a BASEBALL game!" They were a little surprised folks took it so seriously.

I thought this was funny b/c as former players, you would think they would invest the game with more importance than fans. Since it supplies their livelihood, whereas for us, it's entertainment.

Guess that shows the power of fantasy, in a way.

Here's to a fun series.

GBrett: To be honest, being optimistic makes me a little queasy. What if my optimism sets off the Beerleaguer Reverse Jinx & causes the Phillies to lose? I don't think I could ever forgive myself.

My wife is upset because she won't be able to watch Nancy Grace tonight or tomorrow. Since I will be recording these games for posterity, she will be forbidden to change channels between innings, too. I am a tough husband, ha ha!

There is one absolute 100% guarantee about this series. Buck and McCarver will be annoying.
JW, spot on analysis.

Even if the Phils win this WS, they aren't the team of the decade.

As for the 1950 series, talk about a real reach for relevance. I guess it has some marginal interest a largely historical note but it tells me that the media is desperate for any actual story when recycling this point so much.

My pops was talking about a situation Howard was in over the weekend... was wondering if anyone had a link?
Something along the lines that Rhyno was at a restaurant where a newly wedded couple was having their reception... just so happens they were huge philly fans and even had fake name plates made up with phillies players names on them for the head table or something...
Howard apparently made an appearance, took pictures and did autographs for the wedding...

If it's true I think is just an example of why the Phils are such a likeable team. There really is no 'Bad Guy' on the team (except maybe Myers?), and they all seem genuinely grateful for their fans..

This is a good Stark article (from 10/24) about the Phillies:

Willard Preacher Davey Lopes is the first base coach he usually isn't waving guys anywhere so I don't know why he would have wood

I just went to ESPN's predictions page. It has 22 ESPN writers' predictions. They vote 20 to 2 that the Yankees will win. We must all be deranged!

As some as suggested on previous threads and touched on this one. Game 1's, more importantly in the World Series has proven to be crucial over the years. The last Game 1 loser to win the World Series was in 2002 when the San Francisco Giants beat the Anaheim Angels. Before that was in 1996 when the eventual winner New York Yankees lost Game 1 against the Atlanta Braves.

However, I still feel that if we can split in NY we will be fine. I know that if we lose tonight, this site will be going ballistic digging up all sorts of stats and figures on why the Phillies are doomed. But I feel that if we lose tonight, we can pound Burnett tommorrow.

Ryan Howard wedding article

3 of the 22 ESPN "experts" pick the Phils. I love our chances even more...

Rhyno is a class act all the way. Writers have told me that when they still saw him treating the concessions help with dignity, respect and humor in Reading, that they knew he was one of the good ones. (I've heard similar reports on Jeter, for what its worth).

I'm not sure what to make of Myers. He *loves* playing here and is willing to do whatever Charlie says. Let's hope that everyone has grown from the Boston incident.

Cipper, it's on, page 2:

I live in NYC and it is pouring non stop. I may die if this game gets called. Can't. Wait. Another. Day.

Maybe the Yanks are ready to live up to Jimmy's prediction. They want Hinske and the Phillies to repeat in 5.

Was just watching 1st and 10 on espn. Skip balyess was debating against a guy he usually debates against, and african american guy i think his name is robert parker.

Well, mr parker said what we've (the phillies) done in the past three years is a fluke, and only happened cuz of a mets breakdown and we beat a flukey Tampa team in the WS.

Skip defended philly and said that it was rediculous to fault the phillies for who they played. Mr. Parker said that the yankees arent a team built with money and that pedro martinez is goin to get smoked in yankee stadium. It wasnt so much what he said as it was how he said it. So emphatic, almost like the phillies are some garbage low rate waste of time.

I'm pissed. I'm angry, I want to rip New York's heart out.

let's do it boys

Found this by Mike Schmidt:

And here's a great paragraph from it:

"First, here are a couple guarantees you can take to the bank. Reggie, Kate Hudson and Rudy (not the Notre Dame player) will get on TV every game. There will be more close-ups of A-Rod and Jeter than all other players combined. The umpiring will improve, because it can't get worse. Quick question, umps: If any part of the ball touches that gray square we see on TV, is it a strike? Yeah, sure, we'll be watching."

Mike, I'll bet Mr. Parker is considered an "expert"

Look for Durbin. He's having a quietly wonderful postseason.

Ben Francisco is a guy who could very well play a huge role in this series. I like the balance he brings to the lineup. Think about it: with him in there, the righties actually outnumber the lefties against Sabathia & Pettitte, 6-3 (switch-hitters included). I would like to see him hitting seventh, with Feliz moved to the nine slot, but I don't expect that from Manuel, who's had the lineup on auto-pilot for weeks and weeks.

Headed up to the Bronx with my World Series fever! I'm a lucky so-and-so.

MLB Network is vastly superior to ESPN's baseball analysis.

All of this pro-Yankees stuff is getting ridiculous. I guess that's why they play the games to determine the winners. Let's get 'em, Jimmy!

I'd love for the Phils to put up a five spot in the top of the first to just deflate their sails and set the tone for the rest of the series. I ain't afraid of no Sabathia!

How bad does this suck...i have to take clients out for dinner tonight at 730...UGHHHH thank god for DVR

WTF is this Parker? Is it Ray Parker Jr? Did he finally wake up from his coke binge from the 80s to put on his NY homer cap?

RSB - not sure if you saw my earlier post, but if you are worried about a PPD tonight, I've found Twitter is the quickest way to get that kind of news. Just search for #phillies and you'll see the announcements before anyone else.

Rob Parker is a Met fan--that's all you need to know about him to determine where his "analysis" is coming from.

Finally, a NY newspaper article worth reading, from our old friend Doug Glanville in the NY Times:

phargo, no offense (I normally LOVE your posts) but WGAS who Jason Stark thinks is th eteam of the decade.

I care who wins the 2009 WS.

LF, tell your wife to ditch that fraud Nancy Grace.

She lost all her credibility when she attempted to "convict" the Duke lacrosse players on he show.

She's just about the biggest fraud on the air.

I live in Florida, way out of the area. Most people here don't care about baseball, let alone either team. There is one Yankees fan though so we have a friendly rivalry going.

I just told my boss that what I want most from this World Series is for the Phillies to finally get some respect. I followed this up with the notion that even if they DO somehow "upset" NY, everyone will talk about how the Yankees faltered and blew it, and not about how the Phillies proved they are the best team. Pisses me off, but I'm resigned to this fact.

So I think we're doomed either way. The media will make this all about the Yankees, regardless of the outcome.

The best we can hope for to avoid that from happening is an absolute plastering and 4 game sweep of the Yanks.

From a fan perspective though, I'd prefer more drama of close games and a longer series, as long as the good guys still pull it out.

One thing I am certain about: regardless of the outcome I've never been more excited for baseball. I'll be loving every minute of it no matter what. Bring it on!

AWH - I agree - possibly the first misfire by Stark this postseason. I can think of a hundred more interesting things about this Series.

MG: You don't believe in payback for 1950? And you call yourself a fan?

Back to baseball.

Underdogs vs. C.C. Sabathia (stats include postseason)

Raul Ibanez
43 PA, 40 AB, 11 H, 2 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 9 RBI, 2 BB, 10 K

.275 .326 .525 .851

Jayson Werth
8 PA, 8 AB, 2 H, 2 2B, 3 K, .250 .250 .500 .750

Ryan Howard
9 PA, 9 AB, 3 H, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 3 K, .333 .333 .444 .777

Chase Utley
6 PA, 5 AB, 0 H, 1 BB, 3 K, .000 .167 .000 .167

Ben Francisco
6 PA, 5 AB, 1 H, 1 2B, 1 BB, .200 .333 .400 .733

Jimmy Rollins
14 PA, 13 AB, 5 H, 3 2B, 1 3B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, .385 .429 .769 1.198

Shane Victorino
10 PA, 9 AB, 5 H, 1 2B, 1 HR, 5 RBI, .556 .600 1.000 1.600

Pedro Feliz
8 PA, 8 AB, 1 H, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 3 K, .125 .125 .250 .375

Carlos Ruiz
5 PA, 5 AB, 2 H, .400 .400 .400 .800

Yanks are picked by a combined total 32 of 35 experts on and
Perhaps the 3 naysayers will be invited to the parade.

Thanks for keeping it real, diggity dave. I'm so tired of all the extemporaneous BS that's coming out during these days off. Silly me. I thought the World Series was a bunch of baseball games between the two best teams in the league.

To add to the insanity, my secretary (the all-of-a-sudden-Yankee-fan) is upset because the weather is forcing JayZ to "perform" tomorrow night instead of tonight, and she's going to miss it.

I'm still waiting for advice on how to fire her.

I've shut her up (temporarily) by insisting that before she can say anything about the series or the Yankees, she has to learn the names of the Yankees players, their fielding positions, and the batting order. I got a vacant stare at that requirement, and I think I heard birdies chirp as she contemplated my directive.

I hate bandwagon jumpers.

ozark: On paper the Yanks are the better team, but what the experts don't realize is the better team loses more often than it wins in the post-season.

Thanks for the link Bubba. I enjoy reading Doug Glanville's pieces when they come around. This one was another great column in a long line of great columns from him.

Latest forecast is 33% chance of rain at 8 and 14% from 9pm on.

Temps in the high 40s.

Two reasons why the Phils will win - as supplied by an NPR call in show trivia contest.

1950 was the last time that all the players in the WS where white. A Phils win this year will is a moral certainty as a condemnation of segregation.

The caller who answered the question correctly is from Philly.

That said - I'm still saying the Yankees will win in a vain attempt to soften the disappointment should the Phils lose.

"Yanks are picked by a combined total 32 of 35 experts on and"

What was interesting about those picks is what a huge percentage cited Rivera as the key Yankee advantage. Indeed, the series will very likely boil down to whether the Phils can negate Rivera.

Good piece on why Charlie is a better manager than Joe Girardi:

Kutztown fan: I did something similar with my husband. Your story is hilarious!

Is anyone else still experiencing a Beerleaguer delay?

ozark: Which experts pick the Phillies? Karabell is a Philly native. Kruk? He's a former Phillie. Stark? He's a Philly guy. Do you have the names of the ones picking the Phils?

I'm totally on board with the theme of payback for 1950. But I actually take a longer-term view than that. No team in baseball has more scores to settle than the Phillies, who were easily the worst team of the 20th century. Hence, the entire 21st century is about payback. I look for at least 20 or 25 World Series titles -- hopefully most of them while I'm still alive.

How do you guys like the odds on Werth winning MVP? 16/1 I believe. bet 100, get 1600

You're welcome R.Bill.
Long line of great CF'ers too.

Kutztown, I could give you several ways to set her up, but that would be entrapment.

The best way is to actually expect her to do her job, and document when she doesn't. Build a file for HR.

There's no way any Yankee fan will be able to live up to actually putting in a full day's work.

Here's why: Their minds have been infected by that rare disease - Entitle-itis. It's the one where they think that because "they're the Yankees" their team is entitled to win. (If you recall it actually started spreading to met trolls after the Santana trade, who actually forgot that the games really have to be played.) It seems to be a strictly NY phenomenon.

Anyway, because she's a Yankee fan (and a bandwagon jumper at that) I'm sure it's morphed and she thinks she's entitled to her job. (Work? Really?)

Just document her shortcomings and make sure HR knows about it.

She's a Yankee fan - she'll torpedo herself.

"the better team loses more often than it wins in the post-season"

I never realized this. This explains why the yankees have won so many damned world series.

K-Town: If you want to fire her for rooting for the Yankees, my best advice is to fire her for rooting for the Yankees. Don't look for an excuse or a subterfuge. The coverup is worse than the crime or, in this case, the coverup would make it look like you had another motive which could be illegal. The fact is, unless she has a contract guaranteeing her employment beyond tomorrow, you can fire her for any reason or no reason, as long as you don't fire her for a legally prohibited reason. Just be ready to smile when she starts collecting those unemployment checks.

"what the experts don't realize is the better team loses more often than it wins in the post-season."

clout: If you're asserting that the odds are against the best team winning any one series, that's a breathtakingly illogical statement. The better team loses in the playoffs more often than it wins because the the odds are against ANY team winning 3 series in a row. But the odds of winning 3 series in a row are irrelevant when the team has already won 2 series and only needs to win 1 more.

Ozark: Your secretary is representative of about 60% of Yankee "fans".

From a hardcore Met fan: Best of luck to you guys!


"but what the experts don't realize is the better team loses more often than it wins in the post-season."

Are you suggesting the odds are that the worse team will win any given series? I don't think that's true. Are you using empirical data? What is true is that the odds are that the best team in the playoffs at the beginning of the playoffs will not be the winner, but that's because you need to factor in the 7 other teams' odds. Perhaps you mean to say this, but this is entirely irrelevant for this series.

For all those putting "do or die" status on game #1 - take a breather. It's how we come out of the first two games that matters more. I'm counting on the Yanks winning game #1, and we counter with a win in game #2. Coming out of NY with (at least) a split is what we have to keep our eyes on. Then, we'll have 'em right where we want them. Phils in 5 (Jimmy's right).

The storm which caused widespread rain yesterday into today is moving out of the picture and into New England. The heavier rain has ended in NYC. There will be remnant light showers and drizzle this evening, but these should not affect the game being played on time.

Shawn: Werth had a great WS in 2008, and with the lefty starters he's facing, he's got a chance to have another good series. He might be the best value at 16/1.

Really? We're trying to apply logic to something clout said? This is going to one long painful comment thread to read...

I'll save you the time.

clout will post stats showing that the team who finished the regular season with the most wins fails to win the World Series something like 75% of the time. That's his evidence that the best team usually loses.

Carry on...

Thanks for the tips re: firing my secretary.

She's already been put on notice that if the Yankees win the series, she should pack her stuff and get out.

Actually, she's a good worker, and I value her a lot. But she does have the New York attitude i.e. everything about NY is the best and everything else sucks.

When I told her that in years past the actual games were the highlight of the WS, not the opening acts (i.e. Jayz), she responded, "But did they have A list performers like we do?" I didn't have to say a word in response as my look of disgust spoke volumes. She broke out laughing at her own arrogance. So, I guess, the moral of the story is she at least has some ability for humility, self-awareness, and self-mockery, even if it is fleeting.

Three more hours to go...

I think game one is bigger for the Yankees than it is for the Phillies. Imagine if the Phils steal one against CC, then face Myers, I mean Burnett in game two!!

Anyone notice that the price on stubhub is less in the Bronx than at the Bank? Are the Yankees having trouble selling out? Will there be a Phils invasion?

Nancy Grace? Haha. I came home yesterday and The Wife was watching "Little Couple," a married pair of vertically challenged Americans, jut trying to make it in a tall world.

All I could think of is that these two would make terrible third basemen.

For sanity's sake, please play this game tonight.


Strange how when I post things that have been proven years ago by various sabermetric studies, they are questioned. Links to all sorts of articles reviewing post-season winners showing that the best team (as measured by win total) has won less than 50% of the time were posted on this blog when this subject first came up a couple weeks ago.

Do some research guys.

Pollyanna, I mean CJ, are you suggesting that the best team usually wins? Or that the most wins don't count?

Luis: The best team has won less than 50% of the time. Sometimes they get knocked off early. Sometimes they get knocked off in the very last series.

>The best team has won less than 50% of the time.

I think that you need to clarify "best" here. What you mean is "team with the most wins in the regular season".

Because of unbalanced schedules, and conferences, this is not an apples to apples comparison.

Drop Toronto in the AL Central - you've got a new Div winner.

@ clout

the point is, that stat is only relevant when asking the question at the beginning of the postseason. Once two rounds have been played, using that stat to support the conclusion that the team considered better likely will lose that given series is either intentionally misleading or the byproduct of faulty logic.

Clout -

You mean the team with the most wins gets knocked out 50% of the time.

That has nothing to do with "best team", due to unbalanced schedules.

I don't think tonight is a must win, but it puts enormous pressure on the Evil Empire with AJ Burnett pitching game 2. It also relaxes Pedro.

Go Phillies, I'm starting to get jumpy in anticipation!

PS: All my Mets fan friends are rooting for the Phils!

sorry double post...

beerleaguer may be put thru its paces tonight.

BobbyD: YES...people are concerned about Pedro pitching game 2, but AJ Burnett is GARBAGE and does not match up well against this lineup (see: game he started in May where he gave up 4 bombs). I wouldn't trust him at all.

for some reason ... of all the experts and fan blogs and blog commenters and whoever discussing who will win this series... Rob Neyer's>piece affected me the most. Especially this:

The Yankees are overwhelming favorites because they're significantly more talented than the Phillies. If they'd played in the National League East this season, they'd have beaten out the Phillies for first place by a dozen games or more.

Which doesn't mean they're going to win the World Series. But there's a reason why so many people who don't live in Philadelphia think the Yankees are going to win. And while I know that the numbers (and many of the same people) believed the Dodgers were going to beat the Phillies, I also know that the numbers (and the people) have done pretty well this month, otherwise.

I would love to see an exciting World Series. I just don't see any reason to think I will.

joe l, the economy sucks in NY, and wealthier taxpayers are moving out of the city. That may have something to do with it.

Take a look at this article. This is what happens when cities overburden their citizens with taxes.

The interesting thing is that municipalities never seem to learn. This has been a phenomenon that's been going on for a while.

"Willard Preacher Davey Lopes is the first base coach he usually isn't waving guys anywhere so I don't know why he would have wood."

Craig, Lopes is largely credited with much of the overall baserunning prowess of the Phillies team. Also, when someone stretches a single into a double on Damon's limp arm, rewind your Tivo and see who it was sending the runner to second.

Luis: If you really want to pin it down, find out how many "best" teams got as far as the world series (and be sure to include pre-1969 teams) and then caluclate how many of them lost. sophist could probably do it in 5 mins but he's not around.

But you are correct, my statement is based on what pct. of the best teams survive all 3 rounds of playoffs.

So, simply put, where is the analysis on just the World Series matchup? How often does the team with the better record win the Series (of just the 2 teams in the Series)?

There are statisticians that frequent Beerleaguer, correct? Perhaps you could enlighten us on the current debate.

For instance, if you are flipping a coin, the chance of it coming up heads ist 50%. If you flip a coin 10 times in a row, and ten times in a row it comes up heads, the 11th time you flip, the chance of it coming up heads is still %50. Previous results have no bearing on the 11th flip.

So my question is, is it faulty reasoning to say that the "better team" will lose this World Series because that's what happened in the past?

(These games can't start soon enough if this is the type of stuff I'm posting on BL....)

clout: It is amazing to me that you can be a smart guy, yet fail to understand a principle of math that most junior high school students understand: probabilities do NOT remain constant as an event unfolds; they change as events change.

If you flip a coin 10 times, the probability is that heads will come up 5 times. If it comes up tails the first 3 times, it does not mean that 5 of the last 7 flips will probably come up heads; what it means is that, in all probability, there will be more tails than heads amongst these 10 flips.

Applied to sports, the odds say that Tiger Woods wins about 50% of the golf tournaments he enters. But if he is 10 strokes off the lead when Round 1 ends, his odds of winning that tournmanent are substantially less than 50%. Likewise, before the 2009 season started, the probability was pretty high that Jimmy Rollins would perform to career norms in terms of batting average & OPS. But that probability decreased substantially when we got to the halfway point of the season and he was hitting .224 with a .625 OPS.

So, to come to our present situation, the odds of the best team winning it all are slim because it requires them to win 3 series in a row -- which is a tall task for any team, even one which is head and shoulders better than the others. But the odds of that team winning it all do not remain slim once they have already won the first 2 series. So, if the Yankees are really the better team, the odds of their winning this series are better than 50-50.

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