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Monday, September 27, 2010

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Still, up until the second Beltran homer, thought we might see a walk-off. I thought Charlie was smart to yank Hamels and Madson when he did. Actually, a shame Madson had to be used at all. Is it remotely possible that Baez could throw like that again? A rainout today might be a good thing.

Not real worried about what happened this past weekend. I think the are inevitably falling back to Earth a little bit. They may also be taking the foot of the gas a smidge. They've locked up a playoff spot, the division will be their's either today or tomorrow. They just need to rest up and stay sharp. It's all about positive energy with this team. Glass is half full baby!

I'm sure someone posted this already, but here it is again.

The Phillies are now 19-5 in September. They are 3-3 against the Mets. It makes my skin crawl. During their best stretch of the season, they were .500 against that pathetic excuse for a team.

It drives me nuts.

And now for some more cherry picking. Since August 23rd, they are 23-10. They are 3-7 against the Astros and the Mets during that time.

RB:

Since Jul 22: 7-9 vs. Astros & Mets, 38-8 vs. everyone else.

Too many batters swinging at the first pitch during yesterday's game, noone working the count, including Jimmy in his much celebrated pinch hit appearance and Chooch right before him. No sense of urgency. Cole looked rattled by the Wright HR, and never regained composure, unlike him for most of this season. Hopefully just a speed bump.

If we take the Mets out of the equation, it's as simple as losing a series after winning about 15 in a row. It's going to happen and now is a good time, after it's all but locked up.

Putting the Mets in the equation, they suck and we should have beat them and I keep thinking about how sweet it would have been to celebrate with them in town.

Some good ol garbage time baseball. We get a few extra games of it every season, i like it.

Too many batters swinging at the first pitch during yesterday's game, noone working the count, including Jimmy in his much celebrated pinch hit appearance and Chooch right before him. No sense of urgency.

Isn't that a contradiction? If they were swinging at the first pitch, couldn't we say that they were too urgent?

The point is still valid, though. I just feel like being a jerk this morning. The Phillies lost a series to the Mets at home and it's raining today. That kind of day, I guess.

That kind of ho-hum attitude is what we had to endure the whole middle of this season watching this club. I dont care if we are up 20 games all season. I just dont like ho-hum-ness. I hope this runs its course over the next week and they start the play-offs with a fury. Yeah they'll win the division. But I am cherishing every moment of it. And not taking it for granted.
Been thru many bad Phillies seasons (and probably more to come) to not relish every miinute of this ... Another championship !!! WOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOoooo!!!!! I said WOOOOO Fn HOOOOOO !!!

The swinging on the first pitch thing theyneed to stop. They score runs when they are patient and force the pitcher to throw the pitch they want. They were doing that when they were on the win streak. Now not so much.

Whew, from a quick read of yesterday's blog, I thought Ed Wade took our Bocock away. I have a Bocock jersey on my christmas list.

"The swinging on the first pitch thing theyneed to stop."

They were probably anticipating Jimmy's return and just wanted him to feel comfortable.

Saturday it seemed that the Phils, Mets and umps had someplace to go after the game. Swinging at the first pitch, everything’s a strike, game over in a little more than 2 hours.
On Sunday, the home plate umpire screwed up everyone’s plans by calling a strike zone that got tighter and looser of its own free will making the train rides, both north and south a little late departing.
Rain permitting, the real Phillies will get down to business tonight.

All things considered it could have been worse for Cole yesterday. He danced out of trouble on some bad base-running and good defense in the 3rd, then the wheels came off for good in the 4th.

He was due for a real stinker, and hopefully it's out of his system now.

JW says that clinching is ho-hum, which of course it is. it's just funny, because if this was 2001 or '03-'06 we ALL would have been chewing our nails waiting for the Padres to lose last night just so we'd be safely in. Remember how Oct baseball used to seem like a dream that happened to other people?

I thought the tone for the offense was set in the first inning. Victorino is hit by a pitch; Misch goes 3-0 on Polanco, then a close strike one, before Polly swings at a clear ball four, grounding out; Utley walks; then Howard and Werth both swing at the first pitch, and no runs are scored. Misch was not sharp; a little patience and the Phillies score a couple of runs early.... meanwhile, Hamels was also not sharp, and getting squeezed, and losing his cool a little, and also pitched into some bad luck in that 3-run fourth.

Tim from WP,

That sounds about right. Frustrating series, but way, way too soon (and inappropriate in the context of the Phils' overall record) to start being out on the the ledges.

The one consolation for this brutal series is that no team is going into the playoffs red-hot. The Twins may be the closest, but they are banged up. The Yankees look like crap. Texas is decent, and te NL West and wildcard teams have spent weeks beating each other up now so they'll all come limping in. We're still in the best shape of all of them.

Someone on here reported that Bocock was sent home, which seemed odd. Can anyone confirm if he's still here?
Also, anyone know what network will carry Phils playoff games.

Also lost , with little notice, was our chance at 100 wins.
99 is the max now and would look really good.
I'd even settle for 98 regular season.(Plus 11 post season wins )

Ist series is TBS the next two are Fox.

The numbers of wins is irrelevant. They win 2 games this weekend, and they lock up the best record in the NL. Or if they only win 1, and the Padres and Giants both lose 1, the best record in the NL is locked up.

That's all that matters now. Get homefield throughout, rest up Doc, Hamels and Oswalt, get Madson and Lidge some rest, sit Polly a couple games, get Jimmy some ABs, get Raul and Jayson a blow, get Schneider into a few games in a row, give Gload and Sweeney a couple games at first base.

This team will be fine come playoff time. They didn't exactly charge in last year, and that didn't seem to hinder them too much.

The only reason they even had a chance to clinch this weekend is because they won 11 in a row. But it would have been nice to celebrate in front of the Mets.

Here's Matt Gelb's stab at the playoff roster:
Catchers (2)
Carlos Ruiz (R)
Brian Schneider (L)

Infielders (7)
Ryan Howard (L)
Chase Utley (L)
Placido Polanco (R)
Jimmy Rollins (S)
Wilson Valdez (R)
Mike Sweeney (R)
Greg Dobbs (L)

Outfielders (5)
Raul Ibanez (L)
Shane Victorino (S)
Jayson Werth (R)
Ben Francisco (R)
Ross Gload (L)

Pitchers (11)
Roy Halladay (RHP)
Cole Hamels (LHP)
Roy Oswalt (RHP)
Joe Blanton (RHP)
Brad Lidge (RHP)
Ryan Madson (RHP)
Jose Contreras (RHP)
Chad Durbin (RHP)
J.C. Romero (LHP)
Antonio Bastardo (LHP)
Danys Baez (RHP) **

** The toughest decision is the 11th pitcher and it could go quite a few ways. Kyle Kendrick is a consideration and I think in a seven-game series, he makes it. But for the first round, we'll say they go with Baez over Kendrick and David Herndon.


I would switch out Dobbs for Browm and Kendrick for Baez myself.

Any thoughts?

If Brown is healthy, he is clearly a better option than Dobbs.

Forget the Mets. It would have been nice to celebrate on the field in front of the home fans.

I agree with Fatalotti - What matters is home field advantage, not the number of wins.

And while it would have been disappointing not to make the playoffs, I don't think it's ho-hum to make them. It's quite an accomplishment even if it was predicted at the outset. All the injuries, the inconsistent offense, not knowing how Lidge would do at the beginning of the season...I think it's worth getting excited at making it to the playoffs again!

No surprises on Gelb's roster but I wonder why he thinks Baez makes it over KK. Baez has exactly 3 IP since returning off the DL and has been an option of last resort.

KK has better numbers vs. right-handed hatters and is a guy capable of soaking up a few innings if a game is a blowout. Frankly, I would rather see KK out of the bullpen than Blanton at this point given how much Blanton has struggled this year in the 1st inning.

I believe that Dominic Brown, Charlie Brown, Jim Brown, etc....are better options than Greg Dobbs.

I'm sorry, the Phillies clinch the NL with 1 more win, not two, or one more loss from the Padres/Giants/Braves.

The Phillies are either going in as the NL's top seed, or they are going in as the WC (if they lose out).

Actually, they could lose out, and if the Braves lose just one more, and the Padres and Giants both lose at least one more, they'd still have the NL's best record (I believe they have the tie breaker over the Reds as well).

Scratch that last post...it was all wrong.

Take 2 of 3 from the Mats this weekend, and the Atlanta series will be meaningless for us.

Also, If the Padres (who have a game in hand on the Giants, but are tied in the L column) can make a strong push at the end, if Cincy can have a good strong finish, and if the Phils play their B-squad in ATL, the playoff seeding could shake out as:

1: Phil
2: Cincy
3: SD
4: Atlanta

Which would give us the Padres in the first round, easily the most favorable match up for us, and I think the Reds get by the Braves in that scenario.

And if it's the Padres and Reds standing between us and third straight trip to the WS, color me excited.

When Jimmy swung at the first pitch yesterday it took all the air out of the Park, and it never came back. Fan in front of us yelled "typical Rollins at bat!!"...so much for the ovation.....

As a consolation, the Phanatic ran across the field with no clothes on between innings and was not tazed.....

Joe - after the game I saw the fan who won the Phanatic's shirt. Oddly enough, it fit him.

Yesterday's game was kind of surreal. I must correct my post from yesterday. It was not the worst game I ever witnessed in person. The worst game was a 1-0 loss to Baltimore last year. Cole pitched that game, too. It's just that I really wanted to be at the game where they clinched. Disappointing.

Kk should be 11th playoff pitcher. What you want is somebody as emergency long man should you get sudden weather problem where one of the big boys leaves after three innings. Baez is never going to see any action unless games go till 15th inning, and even then KK makes more sense.
If Jimmy isn't healthy enough for playoff roster, who is our backup SS?

Anybody else see the report from a local Texas paper that Cliff Lee will pitch on 3 days rest throughout their playoff run? Not that this is surprising, but he didn't do it last year. Seems like the Phils are the ones holding their pitchers back from pitching on short rest. Any chance (obviously depending on the circumstances) Halladay, Hamels, or Oswalt goes on short rest in the playoffs?

They only need Blanton twice (assuming they have the best record in the NL and elect to take the 8 day NLDS), so Halladay and Hamels would have to pitch on 3 days rest in games 4 & 5 of the NLCS (and Halladay again on short rest in game 7, if they need it).

Same scenario for the World Series. Does it depend on the situation?

The unexpected return of Hamels the Panty Wetter was unpleasant, but I suppose it's better he gets the she out of his/her system now then in the playoffs. I was far more disappointed in the Milk Carton Offense, which once again made a bad pitcher w/ no stuff look like an Ace. Most egregious case in point: Jimmy Rollins, having not faced a ball thrown in anger in almost 3 weeks, swings at the first f*cking pitch he sees & Grounds Out. Infuriating. There is a reason I haven't missed his presence in the lineup, & that is it.

KF: I saw quite a few people that would fit in that shirt as well, especially in the line for C&P fries.

The game did have a different feel to it, I think for a couple of reasons. One being that thanks to the run they've been on it's being taken for granted the NL East is won, and the other being the Eagles possibly drawing some interest away from that particular game. Quite a few empty seats as well in all sections which is rare.

"The unexpected return of Hamels the Panty Wetter was unpleasant, but I suppose it's better he gets the she out of his/her system now then in the playoffs."

Wow. Hope you get someone to remove the thorn from your paw.

For me, swinging at the first pitch is like driving drunk. You should never do it, but if for some reason you have absolutely no other choice, you better make it home safe. If you absolutely must swing at the first pitch, you damn well better get on base.

With health concerns for both JRoll and Polly, there is no way Dobbs is not on the roster. Besides, he is one of UC "boys". If they only need 3 starters in the first round, maybe Brown makes it over the 11th pitcher.

The Polanco injury is obvious, he's not getting good swings and his power is lacking big time. And not to give any slack to Cole for once again getting bent out of shape, but the umpire was a disgrace behaind the plate. he wasn't even consistently bad, he was all over the board. The Polanco strike 3 was ridiculous. I believe I saw Larry Anderson spit out his waffle fries after that call and several others.....

In visiting the facilities around the 6th inning, heard LA over the radio broadcast saying that he thought he was watching the last game of spring training, with the Phillies players just wanting to get the game over with. Perfect snynopsis of how they looked yesterday, up and down the lineup. They needed to be reminded that they haven't won anything yet, as if they needed to be.....

Mike Sweeney making the roster would be awesome - I hope he does the right thing and locks Dobbs in his locker before every game.

Pitching on 3 days rest is a sign of desperation. I won't say UC would never do it, but I wouldn't bet on it.

Growing up playing half-ball in South Philly, I sure wish Dobbs would have been on my team. He has the perfect swing and mentality for such a primitive street game. Major league baseball, not so much......

Polanco's injury happened about 5 months ago. Why is it affecting him now but not before?

Bighead does a lot of right things, but hes more mediocre overall than most like to admit.

"Polanco's injury happened about 5 months ago. Why is it affecting him now but not before?"

Because he keeps re-aggravating it.

No pitcher pitches on short rest for the Phils this posteason.

NLDS:

With the 8 day schedule, they can pitch only H2O, and they will all be on normal rest for each start.

NLCS/WS, which would you prefer?

A)
Game 1: Halladay
Game 2: Hamels
Game 3: Oswalt
Game 4: Blanton
Game 5: Halladay (normal rest)
Game 6: Hamels (normal rest)
Game 7: Oswalt (normal rest)

B)
Game 1: Halladay
Game 2: Hamels
Game 3: Oswalt
Game 4: Halladay (3 days rest)
Game 5: Hamels (3 days rest)
Game 6: Oswalt (3 days rest)
Game 7: Halladay (3 days rest..again)

I'll take option A. Hamels has never piched on short rest, so who knows how he'd respond. I'd rather have 6 starts from H20 on normal rest (option A), then 3 starts on normal rest from H2O and then 4 starts on short rest.

Also, Blanton has pitched well enough the second half to warrant giving him the ball in a game 4.

Now if you are down 0-3 heading into that game 4, all bets are off.

Dobbs shouldn't be on any playoff roster. He's freaking terrible and has been for 2 seasons. Yeah, he was nice in 07 & 08...I'd much rather have Dom Brown as at least Brown has a random chance at hitting one out or pinch running.


As for the weekend series, I honestly wasn't at all surprised by the big letdown series. The Phillies just weren't all that up for playing a terrible team after they basically ended the Braves threat to the division the series before. Not surprising one bit. They'll clinch the East today or tomorrow regardless. Not worried one bit.

****Polanco's injury happened about 5 months ago. Why is it affecting him now but not before?****

Because its an ongoing chronic injury that can only be cured by rest and off-season surgery.

Of the position players, no one will benefit more from some rest than Placido Polanco. He has been going strong for months now, and because of the zero 3rd base depth this team has right now, he's been playing every day froa while now.

He needs a rest, and he should be rejuvinated come postseason.

Well, with Jimmy back, Valdez can spot Polly at 3B a couple times this week to let him rest up his elbow. Pretty pathetic that Valdez is our only real option to back him up.


Whats the over/under on Jimmy reaggravating his injury (or simply injuring something else) this week and missing the entire post-season?

NEPP: I agree that Dobbs is bad this year, but, because of the reasons I stated above, I would bet my house that he is on the roster.

"Anybody else see the report from a local Texas paper that Cliff Lee will pitch on 3 days rest throughout their playoff run? Not that this is surprising, but he didn't do it last year. "

The Rangers are treating him like a rent-a-pitcher. The said after the trade that he would always pitch every 5th day regardless of the schedule. When that began to backfire and he showed obvious signs of fatigue and pitch poorly, they STILL kept pitching him every 5th day until he stated he had problems with his back.

Then let him rest a bit, but it looks like now they're back to treating him like a rent-a-pitcher.

I will say a lot of things about the Phillies, but they don't treat guys on the last years of their contracts like they're expendable.

If they play tonite only because the umps want to get the game in, in sloppy conditions, I wouldn't play any of the regulars. Let the bench guys risk injury.

Heather, according to some on here, they treated Halladay like a rent-a-pitcher, and he's in the first year of his contract.

Polanco's OPS+ by year:

2007: 121
2008: 101
2009: 90
2010: 93

He's the same hitter he was last year -- which is essentially a league average 3rd baseman. But, after watching Pedro Feliz for 2 years, Polanco seems like an All Start by comparison.

In fairness, a league average offensive 3rd baseman is ok in this offense, since we get "3rd base" production from our 2nd baseman. But, with Werth departing, and Ibanez & Polanco another year older, our offense could be a real mess next year. Come to think of it, it's already a pretty big mess this year.

Dobbs will be on the roster as the 2nd lefty PH bat off the bench which is unfortunate because he is just 6-48 this year as PH. Really hasn't hit now in over a year and half and has really struggled the last 2 years as a PH.

Dobbs is definitely a guy who will be a guy this year who at best gets a minor league deal somewhere. Hard to believe that any team would give a 32-year old corner INF with defensive limitations a guaranteed deal.

I hope Lee gets 3 CG, 130P wins over the Yanks, then is gassed against us in the WS.

goody- your Lee post made me wonder.

Which ex-Phil will cause us the most grief in the post-season- Burrell, Thome or Lee?

I'd rather have the pitcher hit than Greg Dobbs in a post-season game. You also know damn well that UC will manage to DH him at least once in the WS if we get there...and he'll go 0-5 with 5 Ks.

Bubba: I fear that it is going to be Burrell, big time.

I find it absolutely unfathomable that Dobbs makes any post season roster. That probably means it will happen. Its especially likely if there is any question about Rollins' availability. Which is especially likely.

With the team only using 3 starters in the first series, why in the heck do you need 11 pitchers?

Cholly only trusts Madson, Lidge and Durbin anyway. He'll be the only 3 pitcher, that pitch in a meaningful situation.

Take Romero, Contreras, Blanton, Herndon (he beats out Baez, Worley and Bastardo) and Kendrick. That's your pitching staff. 10 pitchers. 2 of which, can go multiple innings comfortably. If you need a 11th for the NLCS or WS, then add somebody else.

10 pitchers. 7 bench guys. Dobbs (because we all know he is going to be on there), Brown, Sweeney, Schnieder, Valdez, Francisco and Gload.

Brown would be dropped in later rounds, if you want to add a 11th pitcher.

JUST SAY NO TO 11 PITCHERS!

Lee is probably willing to pitch like that now to further establish his prowess for the Yanks and their giant pitching holes. Lee is probably going to treat this postseason like a big interview for next contract.

BTW, I'll predict tomorrow night's Cholly lineup, once we clinch tonight:

Versus Marquis:

SS Rollins
3B Dobbs
RF Brown
2B Utley
LF Francisco
CF Victorino
1B Gload
C Schneider
P Oswalt

I'll predict, Worley starts on Wednesday. Blanton goes on Friday, with the regular lineup. Hamels goes a few innings on Saturday. Oswalt goes a few innings on Sunday. Madson, Lidge and Durbin pitch once this weekend. The JV players and un-trustworthy bullpen pitchers get most of the action Saturday and Sunday. Lots of Romero, Contreras, Bastardo, Baez and Herndon on Saturday and Sunday.

I'm going to say this then crawl under my desk: I'd choose Dobbs over Dom Brown. Yeah, Dobbs has been bad but he's a veteran who has had success under playoff pressure. Brown has not been good as a ph, isn't really a plus defender overall, so except for speed on the bases. give it to Dobbs on the basis of experience. There. I said it. And I think Brown will be a great player someday soon.
One more thing: Will Charlie ever sub defensively for Ryan Howard in the late innings?

Joe Posnanski is easily my favorite national baseball columnist.

He wrote a great piece comparing Ichiro Suzuki to Nolan Ryan. A must read.

He also agrees that Ichiro is a first ballot Hall of Famer. "No doubt in my mind", he claims.

http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/2010-nl-playoff-rotations-philadelphia-phillies/

"It’s tough to pick against the Phillies in the NL as it is right now. Imagine if they throw out the inferior fourth starter and just go with their top three throughout the playoffs. They already have three of the top five or six playoff starters. If they throw only those three I don’t see how any other team stacks up."

I would sub out anybody who is not going to get bitchy about not making contract milestones for the next 2 or 3 games at least. Then if necessary get them back in against live pitching for the rest of the week.

Fatti - great blog from Posnanski. I liked it as much for the discussion of Ryan (validating my view that he was a great strikeout / no-hit pitcher, but not one of the greatest pitchers overall) as for the discussion of Ichiro's numbers, which is supposedly it's premise.

http://joeposnanski.blogspot.com/2010/09/nolan-and-ichiro.html

Burrell won't be a problem if we see him in the post-season... Dauton, Dykstra, and Kruk are all going to pool some funds together and "Lawrence Taylor" some late night company to Pat's hotel room.....

Problem solved

Dobbs is terrible but it would be kind of risky to go into a playoff series with only one backup infielder. If the Phillies had a 6th outfielder who was left-handed & could actually hit major league pitching, then there would certainly be a temptation to keep that guy & risk going forward with one backup infielder. But, for all his potential, Domonic Brown has provided little evidence that he fits this profile in 2010. So, keeping Dobbs is, unfortunately, a no-brainer.

Bubba: Add Scott Rolen to the list of former Phils that could hurt us in the playoffs. Of all of them though, Lee scares me the least.

"One more thing: Will Charlie ever sub defensively for Ryan Howard in the late innings?"

Oh, please no, and if he does he should be canned on the spot and be replaced with my cat.

Addendum to my 1:37 post:

Brown does have 2 points in his favor: (1) it's always nice to have a fast guy on the bench who can pinch run; and (2) he has a "kind of" respectable .740 OPS against right handed pitching (compared to .607 for Dobbs). I still think they'll keep Dobbs. Brown's pluses probably aren't enough to outweigh the risk of having only one backup infielder. But it's not the "no brainer" I characterized it to be in my first post.

OP - How big is your cat's gut?

The bench in the NLDS will be:

Sweeney, RH (can play 1B as well, late inning PH)

Gload LH (can play 1B and left field, late inning PH)

Francisco RH (can play all outfield positions, middle innings PH)

Dobbs LH (can play 3B and 1B, middle innings PH/Decoy should anyone be stupid enough to fall for it)

Wilson Valdez RH (can play pretty much any position on the field, middling innings PH, bunter)

Brian Schneider, LH (Obligatory backup catcher, can't really do anything else...come to think of it, can't really backup the catcher's spot too well, either, but he has the great, so they keep him on)

Come the second round, I'd drop Fancisco, if we bring on another pitcher, as Gload can play LF if need be, and Valdez can play the outfield (according to Charlie). Also, Oswalt can hack it in RF.

:)

Should have been: *but he has the gear, so they keep him on...

Andy, I'd need to feed him a lot more to match UC's gut, but I'd be willing if it helps the team.

I like the article. I like Ichiro and I still believe he won't get the votes. If the Hall of Fame was an automatic thing with specific guidelines, he would be in, if it was a computer formula (like the horrible BCS system) I am sure he is a first year eligible entrant. It is neither, it is a bunch of writers with axes to grind and then a veterans committee made up of very few fans of J-Ball, as such they really won't think about him unless he wins more, hits more RBI or kills another category like steals per season or perfect fielding years.
If you look up his stats in the Baseball stat website reference, there are some HOFers who have similar or lesser stats and they are nobody we think about today. In their time they were very good or amazing and they mesmerized their chunk of the nation when baseball was king. It is very different now. You could probably come up with ten more singles hitters who had amazing careers off the top of your head who will never get in. If he started here, he would be a shoo-in, I don't see players with a foreign career making it in.
Somebody last week said something about negro leaguers getting in, there really aren't a ton of them getting in either because their brand of baseball was not considered on par with the NL and AL. People don't trust the numbers and Elias doesn't even work on their numbers in their history projects.
The Nolan Ryan thing is a good comparison to me because in a generation or two he will be just as unrecognizable to most fans as Walter Johnson or Jim Rice or Randy Johnson. Curt Shilling will just be the fake bloody sock display at the Hall.

Grandpa - I will bet you a Philly Cheesesteak, wit or witout - your choice, that Ichiro is a first ballot hall of famer. In fact, if he retired today, he'd be a first ballot hall of famer. No doubt.

He is the only singles hitter of this generation who is a lock. Because he is the most prolific singles hitter in history over any ten year period. Period.

aksmith: Where are you from? No Philadelphian ever puts the word Philly in front of Cheesesteak.

Ichiro is in 1st ballot. I'd bet Goody's house on it.

Ak,
I hope all you guys are right about it. I am very cynical about it. I don't believe there is one Asian in the Hall. Perhaps he will be the first Japanese Hall of Famer.

Ichiro's hitting prowess, coupled with his base stealing prowess, makes him a good leadoff hitter. I'm quite sure that a lot of his singles were almost automatic doubles.

Alos, he is an amazing defender. First ballot HOF'er, no doubt.

Regarding the NLDS, why in the world would the Phillies take 11 pitchers??

3 starters:
Halladay
Hamels
Oswalt

Long man/emergency starter:
Joe Blanton

Bullpen:
Lidge
Madson
Romero
Contreras
Durbin
Bastardo or Kendrick

No way Baez should even have a prayer of making the roster. What can Baez do that KK or Bastardo can't do just as well, if not better. KK and Durbin can go multiple innings. Madson is a far better bet against lefties then Romero, which almost means he shouldn't make it, but he will.

I just don't see the need to include Baez at all on this list.

Count me among those who also believe that Gregg Dobbs sucks, yet will be on the postseason roster as well.

Why does it matter that Ichiro is Asian? I'm not interpreting as you being "racist", just not sure where that aspect of the debate comes in? B/c he played in Japan for X amount of years?

I would tend to agree with aksmith, Ichiro is one of the best pure hitters of his time, and no slouch on defense either, with a GG every year he's been in the league. 10 straight 200 hit seasons, one season where he had 262(!) hits, an AL MVP and ROY (same year). The only thing I regret is him playing those 9 years in Japan. Just think where he could be with his hit totals if he played here for even half that time.

I was interested so I looked up some of his Japanese stats. In his age 19 season, his second season in Japan's majors, he had 210 hits, in 130 games! Unreal. Definitely first ballot HOFer, one of the more specific "locks" I've seen in quite awhile.

By the way, is Ben Francisco still on the team?? Has anyone seen him? Please be on the lookout for a Phillies substitute left fielder with either a road grey uniform or a white pinstriped home uniform wandering aimlessly through the streets.....

The Reds may produce the first NL MVP named "Joey" in league history as well, a huge accomplishment for this demographic group...it's been far too long and I for one am glad to see it happen.

"What can Baez do that KK or Bastardo can't do just as well, if not better"

Baez has actually been pitching better of late.

::ducks::

Joe C: Francisco is still on the active roster. You must have missed it. He changed his name to Bench Francisco.

Bedro,
Being part Latino myself and being a huge baseball fan, I have always been shocked at just how white the HOF is despite being populated by an absurd number players from all over the Caribbean and now the world. I would love to see the Hall reflect the sport. Having been there, the football hall and basketball hall, I am just saying I would welcome a drastic embracing of the "world" part of the game (in exhibits as well as the voted in players).

"Why does it matter that Ichiro is Asian?"

I didn't read it as racist, more like, "Wow, there aren't any Asians in there yet. He could be the first one."

Kind of like a knocking down the glass ceiling thing.

""What can Baez do that KK or Bastardo can't do just as well, if not better"

Baez has actually been pitching better of late.

::ducks::"

It's a good thing you ducked because I threw my shoe at you.

Never, EVER, compliment Danys Baez on his pitching!!

Also, your comment is irrelevant. He may be pitching better, but what value does he provide the team that Bastardo or KK doesn't.

He's a bad relief pitcher that can only go 1 inning. Bastardo is a bad relief pitcher than can only go 1 inning, but he's left handed. KK is no great shakes to bring out of the pen, but can give you multiple innings.

So I ask again; What can Baez do that KK or Bastardo can't do just as well, if not better?

Donc: Thanks for the clarification, as no less then a dozen fans around the park yesterday could not answer that question. Some sample responses: Didnt we trade him at the deadline for Herndon? Didnt he go to jail for bumping off a couple guys at a Chuck E. Cheese in his home country over the ASB? Didnt he have Tommy John surgery? Isn't that him in left? Do you know what the Eagles are doing?

once Ichiro gets in, he will likely be the last asian in the Hall for quite some time. i can't think of another significant Far East import other than Ichiro. Matsui maybe?? his claim to fame is as much for being mentioned in Knocked Up ("hey honey, I got Matsui.") as for his baseball accomplishments.

@rauls grandpa -- who exactly are you suggesting has gotten short shrift because he was from the Caribbean?

I kind of like Herndon's composure on the mound. He can retire 7 guys in a row or get knocked around for 6 earned runs and he has that same expression. I believe it's a sign of psychotic personality disorder, but it sure beats watching Romero talking to himself and pointing skyward....

Wasn't Geoff Geary half Asian?

Joe C, quite possibly my favorite "bad" moment of the year is when JC came on to get out a couple lefties late in a game. It was one of those games where the Phillies should've sailed to victory,b ut instead it got really close, really late, because of everyone in the bullpen not named Madson or Lidge.

Anyway, after JC failed to get the lefty out (you know, his job), he is facing a righty, the righty crushes the ball to right field, and JC points up to the sky like he always does on a fly ball or pop-up (because the fielders wouldn't know where the ball is otherwise). The ball proceeds to clear the fence, a couple rows deep, and JC was just standing on the mound, as if some magical genie grabbed the ball and carried it an extra 150 feet.

It was just hilarious.

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EST. 2005

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