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Thursday, October 21, 2010



GTown, how in the world does Hamels not qualify?

Does pitching lights out in game 1 of the NLDS, game 1 of the NLCS, game 5 of the NLCS (on the road), game 1 of the WS (on the road), and game 5 of the World Series (where he had to basically pitch 3 innings on a wet field with nothing but his fastball) do nothing to qualify a guy as a big game pitcher?

Add that to his outing against the Braves this September when we were still fighting for a playoff spot where he went 8 innings of 1 run ball, and then his complete game shutout against the Reds in this year's NLDS, and I think you have the resume of a big game pitcher.

Yes, he pitched poorly in the 2009 playoffs, but he pitched poorly in 2009 in general. When he is healthy and strong, he's a big game pitcher. I have no doubt about it.

That's why I'm worried about nothing but getting to a game 7. Hamels will come through for us.

Also, his outing on Tuesday was far from sub-par. He gave up 2 ER over 6 innings, and if Utley is sharper on defense, it's 1 ER. And if the Phillies offense did jack sh!t that day, he doesn't get pinch hit for in the 7th, likely meaning he goes another inning or two.

Hamels may not have the raw ability of Halladay or Oswalt, but he has certainly proven himself to be a guy you want there in a big spot. He doesn't get phased by the moment.

Halladay, Oswalt, and Hamels need to win three games in a row. That's not unheard of. Doc just needs to get this thing back to Philly, and then crazier things have happened.

Come on Phils!

It has been fascinating to watch Bochy mix-and-match (largely because he has too and he has a better bench) vs. Cholly's steadfast lineup.

A win tonight and we play again on Saturday.

Red Sox overcame this exact situation in 2007. Down 1-3 against the Indians, game 5 in Cleveland, Josh Beckett on the mound for Boston against CC Sabathia (the reigning CY award winner). Beckett outduels the Indians ace, and forces the series back to Boston, where the Red Sox take the final 2 in convincing fashion.

Let's hope we get that same script.

It will be interesting to see how Doc pitches in an elimination game.

maybe it's my hometown bias, but i think that the team that needs to win this game the most wins. that's us. as good a reason as any, i guess.

I wonder if this is technically Doc's first elimination game.

Like, did he ever pitch for the Blue Jays in which, a Blue Jays loss would have meant they were eliminated from playoff contention. I know it's not even close to the same magnitude, nor does his performance in such games bear any signficance on what he'll do tonight, but I'm sure he knew when those games came up, and I'm sure he was acutely aware of it if he was pitching in such game.

Just wondering.

I was the one who originally posed the question about whether Werth should have bunted after the Howard double. I didn't do it to mock anyone, but I did want to make the point that I think we usually criticize more following failure than success (although BL might be an exception to this). It's human nature, and I do it, too. But I don't presume to have better baseball instincts than Charlie Manuel, not really, although I might for a while think I do. I just wanted to further the point that it's debatable.

I'm not sorry I asked the question, because I got some reasons about why Werth should have hit while Rollins should have sacrificed.

I am sorry to incite poster-bashing.

This is interesting. We are fully expecting three straight victories from Halladay, Hamels and Oswalt, yet who are the losing pitchers of the three games we lost to SF? H2O!

Each in his own way will need to snatch victory out of the jaws of defeat. (What a hackneyed cliche!) I think tonight the pressure will be on long haired man-child Lincecum to win the clincher in front of the home fans. If, (and its a big if), the Phillies can jump on Lincecum early and often, Lincecum will be shown the door and given a ticket to Philly to sit in the dugout for a Saturday night sixth NLCS game opposite the LSU-Auburn game on another network.

The best part of last night's game was the Fox promo for the TV show "Fringe" where there is a wall covered in photos and the female actor detective says, "Who is this guy?", then they show a photo on the wall of the Philly Phanatic. It was the highlight of the evening for me.

Lake Fred,

Considering that Doc pitched well enough to win in game 1, and if he gets that strike three call on Burrell (he should have), he probably DOES win that game. Also, considering that Oswalt DID win game 2, and that hamels pitched well enough, with adequate run support, to win game 3, I think we are justified in our beliefs that H2O can do this for us.

Is this a must-win?

Game 4 was the game Halladay should have started knowing the Phils would scratch out some runs against a rookie in a big game, but Cholly decides to throw that game away with Blanton. Why not flip flop and throw this game away since we are facing Lincecum at home - which game was more winnable since we only needed one game to get back to Philly?

Fatalotti, I agree with you. I hope the umps are fair tonight and don't squeeze the strike zone for the visiting team only!

Cocks, that's the argument I've been making all day. Needing only one win to get the series back to Philly,

Halladay vs. Bumgarner
Blanton vs. Lincecum

gives you a greater chance to get back to Philly than,

Blanton vs. Bumgarner
Halladay vs. Lincecum

The matchups in the latter scenario are both relatively crapshoots. Doc may throw an absolute gem tonight, and it's still a good bet that he leaves tied or down a run.

It is strange that certain people can't imagine that a pitcher on short rest can implode. That's what happened to the Phillies in '64, and it is what happened to CC vs the Phillies in '08.

Manuel is not a bad manager, in fact I think he's right for this team, but last night he made many mistakes.

1. Why not bunt Rollins in the 8th when Werth was the go-ahead run on 2nd with no outs?

2. Francisco was the right move to start the game, but why not pinch-hit Ibanez for him in the 8th against Romo the tough righty?

3. Why have Oswalt throw a bullpen/side session earlier in the day, ice his arm, then bring him into pitch the 9th when other relievers were available?

4. Why pull Blanton after only 63 pitches? That's leaving way too many outs up to the bullpen to get, which they couldn't effectively.

5. Why not Lidge in the 9th? If he can only go 1 inning then go to Kendrick, Baez, or Oswalt in the 10 and thereafter if necessary.

6. Still don't understand sending Ruiz. Ran themselves into an out and out of a run.

Bad managing, bad execution.

ATrain, CC was on short rest for about his 6th straight game in 08. He started on short rest several other times in his career, and he's pitched incredibly well.

Also, Doc has fantastic numbers in his career pitching on 3 days rest.

" That you would even mokc those who make this point shows the depths to which you'd go to insult those who disagree with your a priori conclusions."

Sorry Fatty - no insult intended. I'm pointing to what I feel is selective reasoning. Certainly, there was no intent to make any kind of a statement about you personally.

As for the question - the differences in Werth's and Rollins' OPS's, the fact that Werth strikes out quite a bit, that his AVG with RISP has been horrendous, that Werth has had a poor approach the entire series, the fact that Francisco was hitting behind Rollins, all go together to make a rather minuscule difference in the probabilities of Werth having a more productive outcome hitting away in that one at bat in that situation than Rollins. At best, if Werth is productive what, 3 out of 10 times, and Rollins is productive 2.5 out of 10 times, that is a 5% better outcome. Is that the difference between a clear "no bunt" for Werth and a clear "bunt" for Rollins? I don't see it.

The choice to bunt is stronger for Rollins than for Werth - but either way in either case it is a debatable decision, and not an indictment of Charlie's managerial skills.

It is strange that people can't see that pitch CAN pitch on short rest, most recently with CC last year. You're referring to CC in '08 when he consistently pitched on short rest the last month of the season so he finally ran out of gas.

I just can't see how they beat Lincecum tonight. Halladay could throw a 10 inning no-hitter and still leave with a no-decision. Who has faith in this offense? Did anybody get hot last night, Howard continue his solid singles/doubles hitting but not sure anybody else stood out.

Carson: I agree that Cholly/Perlozzo probably made the wrong decision in all of those except 4 and 6. Blanton was starting to get rocked. And Ruiz was only out, and just barely, because of a perfect play. With how weak our offense was it was the right decision.
All that said, I think the execution last night was way way way more the problem than managing decisions were. Although #3 was very strange to me.

FWIW, the Phillies are favorites tonight in the sportsbooks.

Good thing Raul is back in there...he's been very solid this post-season.

NEPP: He's in there for his stellar defense.

Right, right, I forgot.

He's due to have another costly non-catch anyway.

Francisco might be mediocre in LF but he's not quite as terrible as Ibanez out there. And he's had probably the best ABs in the series outside of Howard. Logically he sits.

Not that it matters anyway, this is a dead team walking.

Lake Fred, just moved to Houston. i know you're a native down here... any advice on where to watch the game tonight?

much obliged.

1 for 4 with 2K... that's a pretty high praise for Benny frank... who is now...

1 for 15 in the playoffs for the Phillies over the last 2 years.

Actually, I think its more a commentary on our overall pathetic offense not praise of Francisco.

There have been studies of pitchers on short rest. They show that, on average, there is a significant decrease in performance when doing so, since the advent of 5 man rotations (can't find the studies right now, so I don't remember exactly how much). That doesn't mean it can't work out, of course, but pitching Blanton didn't guarantee a loss either. You'd definitely be going with a reduced quality Halladay if you did it. Saying, "it CAN be done" doesn't change that.

NEPP: I feel Ibañez & Francisco basically cancel each other out in the fielding dept., but Francisco has ever the faintest prayer of reaching base safely, whereas Raúl, so far as I can envision, does not.

Unless one of the two wants to step up, who the hell cares if it's Ben Fran or Ibanez? Neither one of them is upgrade enough over the other to tip the scales right now.

Who seriously thought Ben Fran would start again tonight, anyway, with a RHP starting against us?

We've seen Raul look this bad many a time before, sometimes for months. He's still the better hitter.

So the real question for tonight is, if the game is low scoring and close.. what is Halladay's pitch count? 150? 160? I can't imagine a scenario in which we're winning 2-1 or if it's tied 0-0 or 1-1 and it would be a good idea for Cholly to take him out.

clear eyes full hearts can't lose. let's go phils

There's no tomorrow unless the Phillies win tonight. If Halladay is pitching well he should throw until his arm falls off, or the Phillies score enough runs to win. Personally I'd bet on the former happening before the latter, but that's an entirely different argument.

GTown, that arm falling off v. scoring runs comment cracked me up--I am still chuckling.

TMac cheerfully announced that this is an elimination game. (Subbing for JJ pregame on radio.)

GBrettfan: TMac is the opposite of whatever makes people laugh. If Salmonella had a voice it would sound like Tom McCarthy.

Scott - That's not funny. (Well, ok, maybe it is. But in a tragicomic way.)

Apparently the balls are "jumping off the Phillies' bats" in pre-game BP.

Probably means we'll be no-hit, right?

I think I'll choose morbid humor for tonight's game.

No reason the Phils can't win three in a row. Or at least one in a row tonight. Time for Utley to break out.

See ya tomorrow, Fightins!

Phillies win tonight....3 games in a row,,,posible, ,maybe hopefully

Yo, new thread

If we win tonight I just can't see us losing Saturday. Of course I always think we're gonna win.

What is up with Howard?

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