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Sunday, September 12, 2010

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Lineup: Vic, Polly, Utley, Howard, Wertz, Ibanez, Ruiz, Valdez, Roy O

I know that most will disagree, but intentionally walking Wright with Davis on deck and Romero pitching in a tie game was a really bad idea. Romero immediately going 3-0 and being forced to put one right down the middle should have been a surprise to no one.

If I were Charlie, I'd be reluctant to use a left handed reliever with runners in scoring position in the playoffs. With Romero and Bastardo to choose from, using a LHP is not a strategic advantage, it is a gift to the opponent.

Hard to figure why Charlie would put Utley and Howard back to back against a tough lefty. But at least we have Vic Wertz in the lineup today. Maybe that will make a difference.

Let's examine the players sent to the Indians in the Cliff Lee trade.

1. Jason Donald. Hailed as a future star by posters here because of his bat, some noted that his range at SS would prevent him from being an acceptable everyday SS. He projected better at 2B, assuming his bat was for real. Has been splitting time between the 2 positions, but the bat hasn't been anything special (.690 OPS) and he strikes out too much for a guy who doesn't hit many HRs. You may recall he dazzled evryone in Reading in 2008, but wasn't very good at LV in '09 partly due to injury. I think his bat will improve (he's 25) but don't think he'll be a .300 hitter. Decent doubles power should keep him in MLB as an everyday 2B for a bad team or solid sub for a good team.

2. Carlos Carrasco. Most posters here soured on him becaused he was hyped as a #1 SP and he was never able to carry his dazzling A ball numbers to higher levels. Started slow at LV last year, but his K/9 was solid and he showed sharp improvement after the trade at Columbus. He was always young for his levels and the struggles at AA and AAA probably should've been expected. Has looked very good in 3 starts for the Indians. Won't be an ace, but at age 23 he projects as a decent #2 or #3 starter for years to come.

3. Lou Marson. Another prospect much beloved on Beerleaguer. As one of the Phils top prospects, scouts loved his bat but had concerns about his defense after his seasons at Clearwater and Reading. Oddly, he has become just the opposite. His arm was never in question but he made a lot of throwing errors and his footwork behind the plate was considreed weak. That's all fixed now, but the bat disappeared. he hit .243 in a half season at Columbus last year, .202 in a half season there this year and .196 in 74 games for Cleveland. Marson didn't show much with the bat in his first 3 pro seasons so now we're forced to wonder if those 2 years at Clearwater and Reading were outliers. I think the bat will improve, but he's looking more like a career backup.

4. Jason Knapp. Hard thrower with big K/9 rate, some scouts thought his ceiling higher than Carrasco's. Was identified in Cleveland media as the key to the Lee trade. Last season cut short by shoulder surgery, he's made just 9 starts this season and the numbers suggest he's recovered nicely: 47 K in 28 IP. He'll play in the Arizona Instructional League and at age 19 still projects as a potential ace.

Win today and it's another series win for the Phils. Win each series the rest of the way, and we'll finish with the best record in the NL.


Re: Indians trade

I still think Jason Knapp has the potential to be the best player in that deal.

Although this is instructive for Phillies fan. Neither Carrasco nor Knapp had given much to the Indians in the first year after the Cliff Lee deal. Trades for prospects should never be judged that quickly. Hint, hint.

Clout, per your request.

Below are the runs scored in each of Kyle Kendricks starts, followed by runs given up in each of Cole Hamels' starts, followed by the team result in each of Cole Hamels' starts, followed by what would have happened in Hamels' start had the runs scored in Kendrick's start were given to Hamels.

For example, 3, 1, L, W means that 3 runs were scored for Kendrick in start X, Hamels gave up 1 run in corresponding start X, the team lost that game that Hamels was on the mound, but would have won if they'd gotten the same amount of runs as they did in Kendrick's start X

5, 4, W, W
14, 4, W, W
3, 2, L, W
6, 7, L, L
1, 6, W, L
4, 1, W, W
9, 3, W, W
12, 2, W, W
0, 1, W, L
3, 3, L, Tie
1, 7, L, L
10, 3, L, W
7, 3, W, W
7, 13, L, L
3, 5, L, L
12, 3, L, W
4, 6, L, L
4, 0, W, W
10, 3, W, W
3, 0, W, W
7, 5, W, W
9, 4, W, W
3, 1, L, W
1, 1, L, Tie
1, 5, L, L
8, 4, L, W
2, 0, W, W
3, 0, W, W

Actual team record in Hamels' starts (not counting his last against the Marlins, because he has one more than Kendrick) would be 15-13. Actual record if Hamels had gotten Kendrick's run support would be 18-8-2.

For the two ties, Hamels had pitched in NYC for both of those games, but I think we can be liberal and assume that if those two games had both headed into extra innings, the Phillies would have won one of them (assuming they're scoring like they do for Kendrick), so let's improve the record to 19-9.

There you have it. With KK's run support backdropped over Hamels pitching, the Phillies have 4 more wins, and are currently 86-57 and leading the division by 4 as opposed to 82-61 and tied for the division.

Yeah, it's a stupid exercise in wishful thinking, but you did ask me to prove it, and just like I predicted, 3 to 4 more wins.

Watching Romero point to the sky as if Mike Hessman's HR in Philly was a can of corn and then continuing to watch in disbelief as the ball sailed rows over the wall was one of the funniest things I've ever seen.

Watching Romero fight injuries and be ineffective after testing positive for PED's isn't exactly shocking

Fatalotti: I think you've just proven that a #2 strater is of better quality than a #5 starter and that if you're going to score runs it's more efficient to score them for your best pitchers.

Agreed, clout.


has anyone from the phillies indicated the extent of jrolls injury?

Test

Fatalotti: Intresting analysis, but it doesn't seem to address the quality of pitcher the Phils tend to face when Hamels, Oswalt, and Halladay are on the hill.

Everyone bemaons that the Phils support Blanton and Kendrick better than the big 3, but the offense generally (not always - of course) faces a bigger challenge when a top 3 starter is pitching.

Maybe I'm missing something - feel free to let me know if I have.

Mets have severe problems winning two games in a row, so lay your bets and enjoy your winnings.

Am I being greedy to feel disappointed in only getting 1 run out of that? Stranding a runner on 3B with 0 outs, 3 consecutive SOs...

Is anybody else here sick in their stomach because after 3 hits from the first three hitters, the #4, #5, and #6 hitters all struck out?

Beyond pitiful. Un-frikkin-forgiveable. Lame beyond belief.

Yeah, I know, game's not over, these guys have lots of RBI, Phillies tied for 1st, all true. Still. This is beyond lame.

That...was pathetic. Howard, Werth and Ibanez looking quite feeble.

Did I miss Jonathon Niese morph into Sandy Kofax after the Utley hit???

I don't think it was too much to expect a sac fly or a sac groundout from either Howard or Werth.

In other ex-Phil farmhand news, Kyle Drabek will make his major league debut on wednesday vs. Baltimore.

CHOOOOOOOOOCH!!!

We shouldn't be swinging for the freaking fences there - just put the bat on the stinking ball!

Without Chooch, this would probably be a tie game.

Here we go again...the Phils score in the first and its nothing but bitching from the ingrates about 3 little Ks.

Normally I would hate to see Ibanez in the lineup vs. LHP but he has been hot the past week.

Not ungrateful. Greedy.

Hey, hitting against the shift. Pretty novel.

I love it. "Ryan is NOT seeing the ball well at all" then he gets the RBI on the next pitch.

Howard good...Werth SUCKS!

Giving Howard a fastball to hit 3-2 after he has been so awkward at offspeed stuff today early? That was a pretty questionable call by Thole.

Another run!

Werth has seen 7 pitches so far in his first 2 ABs. 6 have been strikes with 3 ugly swing & misses.

He is a very good ballplayer who is having a good year but he seems to have his share of just ugly ABs/stretches this year.

****Hard to figure why Charlie would put Utley and Howard back to back against a tough lefty. But at least we have Vic Wertz in the lineup today. Maybe that will make a difference. ****

Maybe because neither Utley or Howard have issues hitting LHP this year?

Niese is a decent-hitting pitcher but always hate to see a BB to an opposing pitcher. Let him flare a fastball out to the OF & earn it.

GBrett - That's the spirit!

Okay...now watch Reyes steal 2B to make getting the lead runner a moot point.

Isn't it nice to be able to throw out an Ace pitcher every other game?

NEPP - Its still foolish because it enables the Mets to use Feliciano or Takahashi to face Utley/Howard late without possibly forcing Manuel to make a move.

You would think that after seeing Feliciano usually get the better of Utley/Howard that he would break them up. Oh well.

****NEPP - Its still foolish because it enables the Mets to use Feliciano or Takahashi to face Utley/Howard late without possibly forcing Manuel to make a move. ****

Utley in 2010:

vs. RHP .761 OPS
vs. LHP: .960 OPS

I'd rather worry about the first 3 ABs in the game for both of them rather than the last 1.

Howard in 2010:

vs. RHP: .872 OPS
vs. LHP: .855 OPS

Cholly isn't a Negative Nancy like some - he expects to be far ahead late in the game and doesn't worry about who the Mets might bring in.

Niese has had good stuff so far today especially after the 1st inning. Easily could see him going another 3 Ip without giving another run.

Utley flashing his crappy defense again.

NEPP - All he needs to do is flip-flop Utley and Polanco as we was doing earlier this month. It just makes doesn't make that much sense to pitch them back-to-back especially for a team that has a few LHP relievers.

MG, Utley hits Lefties better and he has for a couple years now. Its a moot point.

NEPP - How is a moot point when you have repeatedly seen the Mets use Feliciano vs. Utley/Howard late in games the past 3-4 years with the Mets usually ending up on the winning side of that battle.

Utley (33 ABs) - .242/.342/.515
Howard (33 ABs) - .182/.229/.303

Polanco has only faced him 3 times. He is 1-3 with a HR.

right-handed bats vs. Feliciano this year - .368/.464/.434

left-handed bats vs. Felicano this year -
.230/.306/.310

Like I said, it is a poor move for a couple of reasons.

Sarge is right. Niese is throwing a ton of 4-seem fastballs so far. 50 of his 70 pitches so far have been 4-seemers. Thrown 35 for strikes averaging 90 MPH.

Phils have struggled vs. LHP starters this year but it seems like usually do against guys who throw a bunch of ofspeed stuff especially chagneups.

Only really offspeed pitch that Niese has used today is his curveball.

Even given BL standards, it is really weird to go 5 innings into a thread where our pitcher is lights out without as much as one person saying a thing about it. So here 'tis: Roy2 wasn't an awful pickup.

Every since '07, the Phils pick up a starter at the trading deadline who pays who dividends.

This year Oswalt is 5-1 and the Phils are 7-1 in his 8 starts so far.

2009 - Lee was 7-4 and the Phils were 8-4 in his 12 GS. Pedro was 5-1 and the Phils were 8-1 in his 9 GS.

2008 - Blanton was 4-0 and the Phils were 9-4 in his 13 GS.

2007 - Lohse was 3-0 and the Phils were 9-4 in his 13 GS

2006 - Moyer was 5-2 and the Phils were 6-2 in his 8 GS after they acquired him in a August deal.

Werth's so-called "career year" is looking more impressive by the AB. What a tool ... er, I mean, what a valuable tool!

I thought maybe Werth was just being courteous to runners...y'know, trying hard to not distract them with his batted ball. The K with nobody on kills my theory.

Was Sarge grunting or shivering about Lakewood's victory? That was strange.

MG, How are Utley's numbers against Feliciano proof that it matters that he bat before Howard? an .857 OPS?

Batting Ibanez and Howard back to back is a poor move. Utley can hit most LHP just fine.

Oswalt is just cutting through this lineup like a knife through hot batter. Using his fastball to get ahead and using his changeup and curveball to get them to make a ton of weak contact.

raaaaaauuuuuuuuuuuuuulll

Giving Raul a 90 MPH fastball down in the zone? That's asking for trouble.

Our #5 hitter has 17 rbi's since the All Star game, 3 this month. Glad Cholly would never do anything radical, like maybe hitting a guy like Ruiz at #5.

Good one, Raul!

Oswalt's awesome.

Howard: 135 SO

Werth: 139 SO

Granted, the latter has appeared in 14 more games than the former, but still ... Ibañez (who has only appeared in 2 fewer games than Werth) has the next-highest number of SO on the team, but that number is 42 fewer than Werth.

And speaking of Raúl ...

:-D

Raul has been heating up of late and now 14-41 this month with 2 HRs.

Manuel a little slow to have somebody up. Phils have a chance to make this real comfortable.

Before today Ibanez was batting .299/.374/.477 since the ASB. He was 14-42 in September, a .381 OBP and 5 XBH (.538 SLG).

Sophist - Thanks. It has been two peaks and a big valley in between. He has really hot until Aug 11 then really cooled off and got hot again earlier this week in Florida.

MG, wasn't correcting you. we just posted at the same time. Your numbers are actually right. I misread ESPN.com.

You're right about the peak and valleys, though. If he had hit at all during his cold streaks he'd have a monster second half, but he had 2 or 3 0-15 or so streaks.

Oh brother. Phils have left the door open for the Mets. The question is can the Mets somehow figure out a way to scratch out 3 runs.

"Before today Ibanez was batting .299/.374/.477 since the ASB."

How can that be? Never a day goes by that someone doesn't demand that he be benched, platooned, or traded.

Why did TMac get so excited when the Phils hit into a GDP? Enough. I have reached my TMac quota. Its the radio the rest of the way.

Listening to 9 IP of him most days is just too much.

Why did TMac get so excited when the Phils hit into a GDP? Enough. I have reached my TMac quota. Its the radio the rest of the way.

Listening to 9 IP of him most days is just too much.

MG: TBag's just excited his team is still in this one. Kinda surprised he didn't bust out w/ a "Let's Go Mets!" chant, actually.

Ibanez is hitting .325/.420/.537 vs RHP since the ASB.

HR today was against a soft-tossing lefty.

Oswalt still under 90 pitches, right? Would like to see one more out of him unless the Phils blow it open in the 8th.

I have listened to TMac in months. I mute and go radio (although today it's mute and the NFL on another TV.)

Oswalt could throw 8 strong innings & Charlie would still find a way to use 3-4 more pitchers in the 9th. A CG is our only hope.

MG- you can say that twice.

Utley's OBP against Feliciano is nearing .350 (with .500+ SLG). That matchup doesn't worry me.


LA getting sarcastic on Werth

I did not hear LA, Kool Earl--Pray tell what sarcastic comment he made about Werth?

Mets broadcast puts up Duda's OBP in lieu of his batting average. It's not much better, but it starts with a positive number.

It's Sunday,Werth in his weekend celebration mood.

EF: Whatever it takes, Duda.


gbrett- After Werth popped out LA said " he didnt strike out"

That was unlucky. Would have been an out if it had not hit him. Ouch.

Nice DP.

Wonder where the Phils would be right now without Oswalt.

Coincidence that Ruiz is behind the plate for a 4-hit SO?

Bringing it at 94 mph on the last pitch. Sweet.

15 Gb outs for Oswalt. His changeup and slider were both excellent today. Threw 23 of 29 changeups for strikes.

Damn halladay oswalt hamels is just awesome

Oswaltastic!

These three aces are truly amazing. Get us to the playoffs! And they're all back next year?!?!?

The Phils win yet another series... that's 11 of the last 12 including 2 sweeps. And it's 13 of 15 series including 4 sweeps.

If this team wins each of its remaining 6 series, they'll finish with at least 95 wins, and that's enough to get it done.

That was a masterful performance by Oswalt. I was sorry that the Phils had to let go of J. Happ to get him, I think Happ is going to be a successful major leaguer, but my goodness, Oswalt really is a major upgrade to the rotation. He's been nothing but solid since moving to Philadelphia.

now some eagles for dessert.

I kinda like this Roy-fest the Phillies have goin' on.


Very good. As dismal as the Mets are, they still are okay at home, so 2 for 3 is what I was looking for coming into this series.

Oswalt as a Phil: 6-1 (8-1 team record), 63.2 IP, 14 ER.

Team is 8-0 since his first start. He's given up 10 R in 57.2 IP.

Oh, and I forgot to say...

Another day of production by our #3 and #4 hitters, both batting in runs at opportune times. I was pretty disgusted by the 1st inning performance, but we've got the big guys producing runs, and that's good enough to win ballgames, especially when the starting staff is turning in masterpieces like was saw today.

oops. Masterpieces like WE saw today.

Wow, forgot to check the BP Postseason odds today. Dropped 7 1/2 percent after they dared lose a game. Braves at 87%, Phils at 74%.

rollins going back to philly for an MRI

Oswalt is the best #3 in baseball right now and it isn't even close except for maybe Garcia on the Cards.

NL
Braves - Jurrjens
Rockies - Hammel
Giants - Zito
Padres - Richard
Cards - Garcia

AL
Yanks - Hughes/Burnett?
Rays - Shields
Twins - Slowey
Rangers - Lewis

Phils 'day-to-day' usually means a guy is out for at least a series and more likely at least 7-10 days.

Can't believe that hasn't been a bigger outcry about starting a sick/dehydrated JRoll the other night which medically was a pretty suspect decision for a guy who has battled leg muscle pulls all season long.

if you want an outcry, then email a beat writer and tell them to do a story.

Considering the excellence of the top three starting pitchers on the Phillies, I haven't been as excited about Philadelphia sports since the Sixers had George Mcginnis, Doug Collins, and Julius Erving show up for camp in '76.

Just hope they don't run in to Bill Walton.

Oswalt is awesome. Cliff who???

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