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Sunday, April 24, 2011


14-7? Are we already booking this game as a loss? :)

Argh. Thx.

14-7? Are we already booking this game as a loss? :)


Feels like a loss. Heavy favorites, Pads in desperation mode and unknown quantity lefty on the mound.

Got back from San Diego last night. A couple of things:

1. Oswalt is awesome. He didn't have his good command and was still dominant.
2. Hamels is awesome. Even when he briefly got in trouble, there was no doubt he would escape.
3. RyHow was swinging at fastballs all of the first game, but they weren't throwing any. I've rarely seen a good hitter so out of whack . . . . except for
4. Ibanez. Holy shnikees. I've never seen a bat so slow and a hitter so cooked. When he got around on Aroldis Chapman in the playoffs I figured he'd be good to go this season. But he seems to have aged 10 years over the offseason. If he's healthy, he needs to retire.
5. Polanco is a wonder. The guy just hits the ball wherever it's pitched.
6. If Rollins is healthy, he needs to start bunting a whole lot. His offensive contribution may now be limited to dinks and dunks and dribblers.
7. Orr looks like a valuable part time contributor.
8. When will Mayberry be the starter in left? Don't know if he can succeed on a regular basis, but I think he can top .200 and he has an arm in the outfield and a little pop.

That is all. Btw, San Diego is a nice place to see games. Very fan friendly. And they have basically no fan base of their own. About a quarter of the place was Phillies fans.

As heavily favored as we may be, the Phils' hitters always seem to make opposing rookie pitchers look like Cy Young - especially if they throw slop.

Honestly, what Ibanez needs to do is realize that his bat speed is somewhat slower than it was, that swinging that telephone pole doesn't help and he should get a new bat.

What Ibanez needs to do is take the Mariners up on their offer to make him roving hitting instructor, job starts on Monday.

If I were betting the house, though, I'd still go with Halliday vs. a bad hitting team after a start where he was less than stellar.

Johnson and Ubaldo dueling no-nos in the 5th.

Johnson is quickly ascending into the "best pitcher in baseball" discussion.

Johnson with a no-no through 5. Oh by the way, Jimenez hasn't given up a hit either. The stands are pitifully empty too.

It's hard to imagine a worse hitting team than San Diego. Hitter after hitter with little chance to actually get on base. And the Phillies hitters have been just barely better.

This is not currently a world champion offense, even with the great pitching. If Utley returns healthy enough to be Utley and Raul retires in favor of Mayberry/Brown or anyone with a pulse, things will improve. But there are going to be long stretches of futility no matter what they do.

Dave $$$: Was thinking the same thing.

A-Train: The good news is that LeBlanc isn't a rookie; he made 25 starts last year. The bad news is that one of those 25 starts included 7 innings of shutout ball against the Phillies. And that was at Citizen's Bank Park, against a lineup that included Utley & Werth.

Game over in Florida.

Johnson's been ridiculous this year. This is the third time in five starts he has flirted with a no-hitter. And he wasn't too shabby last year either, when his ERA+ was 17 points better than Roy Halladay's. The only issue with him -- and it is a major one -- is whether he can stay healthy

Looks like Josh Johnson is not "in the conversation" for best pitcher in baseball. He is the best pitcher in baseball, but hasn't been able to stay healthy enough to have the body of work to stake his claim.

The discussion has to include Halladay, Lincecum and Johnson in the NL. And if I had one game to win and the pitcher was healthy, I don't really know who I'd pick.

"And if I had one game to win and the pitcher was healthy, I don't really know who I'd pick."

The answer might well depend on how much you trust your bullpen. Johnson is, arguably, even more dominant than Halladay. But, when the 8th & 9th innings roll around, Halladay is much more likely than Johnson to still be in the game.

bap - You hit the nail on the head with Johnson. The Marlins' announcers (while awful to listen to at times) made this point too. Johnson's biggest issue is not being economical with his pitches and not being able to go deep in games.

Just for comparison, in 2010, Halladay averaged 7.5 IP/GS. Felix Hernandez 7.2 IP/GS. Josh Johnson was only at 6.5 IP/GS (and he also only made 28 starts).

If he finds a way to go deeper into games while maintaining the same level of dominance, he will be the best pitcher in baseball.

Yup...definitely feels like a loss.

The other problem with Josh Johnson is that he's had a nasty habit of missing time. He was shut down in August last year, and it wasn't his first rodeo on the DL. He's still young, so it's worth keeping an eye on to see whether he's going to figure out how to keep himself on the field or if he'll be one of those guys who's great when he's actually around.

Stuff-wise, you'd be hard pressed to find anyone in his league. But like was mentioned above, he throws way more pitches than it would seem like he needs to throw. If I've got one game to win, Doc all day.

Bap, so you are saying that Josh johnson + rivera is better than Doc?

Johnson threw 117 pitches to get through 7 innings in a game where he only allowed 3 hits and 3 walks.

Jimenez only allowed 1 hit, but it was a bases-clearing double after he walked the bases loaded.

That said... JJ is FILTHY. He's easily one of the top 5 pitchers in baseball. Would anyone disagree?

In terms of stuff I'd agree. But factoring in injury history and economy of pitches I don't trust him enough to put him in the top 5 conversation.

Ichabod Crane just pitched the sixth and seventh for Colorado.

85: Doc and Lincecum are there for sure. Then guys like Cliff Lee and CC? Who else would you put above JJ right now? I'm guessing I'm missing some obvious choices.

Felix Hernandez for sure. Maybe Kershaw. Maybe Wainwright. Maybe Lester. I think I'd take JJ over all of them except Felix.

Spitz: Not over a full season, since I can count on Doc to make 34 starts & I don't know how many I can count on Johnson to make. We were talking one game.

I don't know how to answer your question because it's too much of an abstraction. I'd need to know who is the setup man that would pitch between Johnson & Rivera, annd who are the relievers that are backing up Halladay? If your question is whether, for one game, I'd rather have Roy Halladay pitching all 9 innings, or Josh Johnson pitching 7 to 8 & Rivera pitching the rest, the answer is: for one game, I'd rather have Josh Johnson pitching 7 to 8 innings & Rivera pitching the rest. But I realize it's heresy to say that on Beerleaguer & I'm fully prepared to be pilloried by the usual suspects.

Florida working on blowing it. Lead off single, sac bunt misplayed for runners on 1st and 2nd. Passed ball during the next sac bunt attempt, runners at 2nd and 3rd, none out.

Ah, forgot King Felix.

I'd put Doc, Lincecum and Felix above JJ for sure. After that, JJ's at least in the argument.

Rockies within a run in the 8th, down 3-2 with 2 outs, a runner on 2nd and Tulo at the plate.

And... Tulo ties it with a double off the wall. JJ pitches great, won't figure in the decision. Go Rockies!

So... do we root for the Rockies to pad our NL East lead? Or do we root for the Marlins so we can claim the best record in the majors with a win?

So, in an odd way, today's game serves as a perfect example of why Halladay > JJ. JJ pitches impeccably for 7 innings, but his team stands in danger of losing because he threw 117 pitches in those 7 innings & had to be lifted.


I really think he should cruise thru this lineup....

Complete game, shutout, no-hitter, and 27 strikeouts on 81 pitches. Anything less would be a disappointment.

I know our bullpen really, really, really sucks, but we are second in the league in bullpen ERA. Imagine where we'd rank if we had a good bullpen!

I think Lester is a better pitcher than Johnson. It's close though and I wouldn't really argue someone who thinks otherwise.

As far as a top 5. I'd go Halladay and Lincecum as definitely 1 and 2. After that it's a huge hodgepodge of very good to great pitchers including guys like CC, Felix, Lester, Kershaw, Johnson, Greinke, Wainwright, Lee, Price, and probably a few others I'm missing.

Stanton just CRUSHED a ball way over the LF scoreboard. Marlins up 6-3.

I'm just not sure Kershaw is there yet. He may soon be. For example, JJ's ERA+ last season was about 50 points higher than Kershaw's. And Wainwright can't really be in the conversation since he's going through TJ surgery.

I guess Lester is in the conversation.

Marlins win. I guess if they were going to win anyway, I'd rather JJ have gotten the win... since he's on my fantasy team.

ok,lets do this!


A lefty with a 4-seam fastball in the mid 80s...

Over/under on Phillies whiffs: 13

BAP, I was being rhetorical. I would pick JJ FOR 7 or 8 + Rivera for 1 or 2 over Doc for 9 in a heartbeat.

Meanwhile, Florida continues to be the 2nd best team in the NL.

That's probably extra bases in most parks.

Spitz: I guess it's my paranoia. I thought you were setting me up for a "BAP thinks ill of Halladay" type of riposte.

So if the opposing pitcher is having control problems enough to walk the previous two batters on 10 total pitches, which pitch should you look to sing on?

That's right first, or second. Cause you're like, the fourth and fifth hitters; and you don't want to be deprived of your hacks.

Nasty, Roy.

I can't tell.. are these pitches far off the plate or is he getting squeezed?

I have to be honest, considering the poor Padres offense and the strike zones this year, not making contact and hoping for a walk isn't actually a terrible strategy.

krukker: I wouldn't say he's getting squeezed, but none of those 4 balls missed by all that much.

It looks like they're off the plate.

The ball just doesn't carry in this park. That was fairly well struck too.

That ball one to Mayberry was a squeeze, though. Shoulda been a strike. John took advantage of it by, like, popping up.

Carry: Sea level, low humidity. Very dry dense air.

Is this pitcher related to Porky Pig?

At this rate he can go all nine innings under 100 pitches. Despite the walks.

the 3rd strike to ruiz was in the same spot roy's ball 4 was........

He should get credit for striking out Hawpe twice.

cheap hit....

Oh come on. This park is every bit as silly as Coors and I loathe Coors Field.

TTI, Felix is not in any hodgepodge. He's the best pitcher in the AL and arguably the best in baseball. He's certainly not "good to great".

Agreed. I'm thankful that we have the pitchers to deal with the park, but come on.

The evidence is really piling up that the umps are under orders to try to create some offense. It used to be a few guys with a tight strike zone. Now it's everyone.

"The evidence is really piling up that the umps are under orders to try to create some offense."

I've got an easier way to increase scoring: stop drug-testing.

Roy's been extra tough on Maybin today.

bap - That horse is out of the barn. Talk about unintended consequences.

You can even keep drugs out, if you want. Just allow aluminum bats; that'd bump up the scoring.


We're entering the era of no called strikes and no complete games. Call it the McGwire/Sosa Era maybe.

Come on, Jimmy. 2-0 count, no one on base, no outs, and he swings. At a ball, no less.

Why, with two pitches so far out of the zone, why for gosh sake, did Jimmy swing at ball three? Why why why?????

Second pitch DP coming up. I call it.

I am really glad that we do not have Raold in the lineup at this time.

Wade LeBlanc has a lower ERA than Roy Halladay, and has given up fewer hits, so he must be the better pitcher. Right?

17 strikes out of 41 is it that he's only THROWN 41 pitches into the 4th?


Fortunately that wasn't Raul hitting.

When Mayberry has ABs like that, he's going to have a hard time convincing Cholly that he needs to play more.

Yawn, once again.

True. And Mayberry isn't a starting quality outfielder in the ML.

But if it was Raul, that would've likely been a weak grounder and a double play.

To pitch to the Phillies:

Throw a strike early in the count. First or second pitch. Once you've established that there is the faintest possibility that something else you might throw could possibly end up being called, maybe, a strike somehow, all you need to do is throw any kind of slop you want to any darned spot you want. They will swing at it. Becasue...because...

Well. I don't know because why. It just works is all.

Mayberry is a platoon player and this actually isn't a great matchup for him, since LeBlanc has reverse platoon splits. But I'd still rather have him in the lineup than Ibanez right now.

Nice short inning for Roy

How is it possible to have a shutout with 22 strikes total out of 48 pitches?

I hope the Phils score before Gregerson, Adams, and Bell get into the game.

Nice gift from the SDP "offense" there, though.

To your Mayberry comment, bay area phan, his approach to hitting tells me that all he'll ever be is a AAAA player at best. Same goes for Francisco. IbaƱez is done for his career. Jury's very much out on whether Dom Brown has the skills. So, my suspect is that since there is nothing in the minors to consider at the moment, the Phillies will have to acquire a player from another team, if they want to shore up their outfield.

"How is it possible to have a shutout with 22 strikes total out of 48 pitches?"

Because after seeing the ball carrying well this weekend, and the huge strike zones, our game plan today is to swing hard at everything we can reach.

We've had a RISP with 1 out three out of the first 5 innings. Time to convert.

Did Polanco just swing at that 3-0? That wasn't good.

Jack: Fairly sure it was a 2-1 count...

Was 2-1. But, with Rollins on deck & our hottest hitter at the plate, I wouldn't have faulted him even if he did swing on a 3-0 pitch.

Phillies haven't scored any runs because they're facing future hall-of-fame pitcher Wade LeBlanc.

Well, Doc is good.

Francisco isn't an AAAA player. He's not a starter, but he isn't AAAA.

His career numbers pretty much establish that he's an okay 4th outfielder. If Raul and Rollins were hitting their career numbers, I'd be okay with him as the "Pedro Feliz" of this squad.

Blue finally gave Doc that pitch off the corner.

CJ: Ok, thought it was 3-0. Which would've bothered me not that he swung in general, but because he swung at a low breaking ball that he couldn't do anything with.

Doc has 'em covered. Here come the runs.

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