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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

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This is why I don't lose sleep over the offense.

Love watching history being made. That was awesome. I don't smoke but I need a cigarette.

About the most enjoyable game to watch all year. Lee has been just sick. Here's a scary thought... Halladay and Hamels still have better season stats than Lee. These 3 are just insane.

I'm pretty sure the Phillies lead the league in CGSOs, and Halladay has yet to throw one.

Wrap your mind around that.

Zach Greinke, the true ace, something that Hamels isn't, tagged for 7 ER in 2 IP tonight.

Overrated.

Lee, Halladay, Hamels are the best three pitchers in baseball right now.

And all pitching for the Phillies.

We need Dom Brown like we saw tonight. This man can do it. It's not luck to hit a HR off Josh Beckett in a big game like this. We need to keep him feeling comfortable and moving up in the lineup.

Has there ever been three SPs from the same team on the same AS team? You can't deny any of them.

It's amazing how much better the offense looks when Dom Brown or Ibanez have a god game.

Complete games

10: Phillies
9: Rest of the NL East

Doesn't matter when you only have 6 hits if you hit a few of them out. Beckett made a mistake to Brown on a fastball and gave Vic a fastball in his wheelhouse when Vic was looking for it ahead in the count. Have a feeling that Beckett was at 100% tonight but the Phils had some good ABs tonight vs. Beckett.

Roy Halladay 10-3, 2.40 ERA, 1.029 WHIP
Cole Hamels 9-4, 2.49 ERA, 0.955 WHIP
Cliff Lee 9-5, 2.66 ERA, 1.070 WHIP

Sick. Sick. Sick.

Best all around game for the Phillies. Good baserunning, good patient ABs, Phillies took advantage of a couple mistake pitches, great infield defense all around the horn, and, of course, fantastic pitching.

The Phillies played a perfect game tonight, as far as I'm concerned.

Let's not forget that Mr. Lee had an RBI tonight. The man does it all. I have to say, if we compare Lee and Halladay, overall, Lee finds a way to get it done as an athlete that I don't see Halladay do. Lee's defense and offense complements his pitching. He's just a winner.

Beckett wasn't very sharp tonight. But (not sure of the stats) but I think the Phils have hit him pretty well in the past.

Thought Tito made two very puzzling moves tonight. First was not continuing to try and bunt Beckett, when he had 2 strikes on him. It was still a close game and that DP was a killer for Boston.

Second mistake was giving in to Vic, when Beckett fell behind 3-1. You have to just walk Vic in that spot and pitch Ibanez, who continues to look overmatched against anyone. Keep that game at 3-0 and you at least have a prayer of getting back into it with just one Lee mistake pitch. 5-0 and it was time to head to the exits.

They should be able to hit Lackey (everybody else does) tomorrow, so if Worley can just give them 6 innings of 3 ER baseball, that might be good enough. Considering Worley has done that in the majority of his ML starts, I don't think that is asking too much.

Among pitchers with 80+ IP, Doc, Cole, and Cliff rank first, second, and seventh in MLB coming into tonight's games. After today, I'm sure Lee will move up the ranks a bit. Nasty.

How good have Doc and Cole been? Cliff has thrown three straight shutouts... and allowed just 1 run in 4 starts this month... and he still trails both of our other aces in ERA this year.

Sorry, that was ranks in SIERA (skill-indicated ERA).

Just heard that during the seventh inning stretch Cliff Lee sold over $2,000 of popcorn; the guy is simply awesome.

Beat writers just tweeted that after the game, Cliff Lee gave the heimlich to the bat boy who was choking on a peanut. He's pretty awesome.

The understatement of the night: "You are probably looking at the NL pitcher of the month." -Tom McCarthy

Jeez, ya think?

Also, as I was typing that, Marty Bystrom just asked Cliff Lee on the postgame show, "Cliff, I noticed in the eighth inning that you took a warmup throw towards second base before you started throwing your warmup pitches. What's up with that?"

He should be fired on the spot.

50-30. As long as they can maintain a nice lead in the division while Oswalt is out (assuming no one gets hurt), they will simply run away with this division if an even moderately effective Oswalt returns.

I read Cliff Lee did open heart surgery during 4th inning, saving a 92 year old man's life.

Are the Phils atill a 2nd half team? If they deliver in the 2nd half like they have done over the last few years 100 wins are on the way.

ESPN just pointed out Lee has more RBI's (2) than runs allowed (1) in his last 4 starts. Wow.

Bloodstripes, if the Phils go on another 49-19 tear like they did in the second half last year, they'll win 110 games.

I think this was the best offensive showing of the year so far. Not the results, but the at bats. There were more quality at bats tonight than in any game I can remember.

When the Phils take this approach, they actually out Red Soxed the Red Sox. It looks like the offenses were reversed tonight. A lot of that was Lee, but on the Phillies side, they were much more patient than usual. They were able to overcome another splendid performance by Raul.

Over the last two seasons, I have become a Raul Ibanez fan. So much so that I wish he'd hang it up. This is getting embarrassing for him. He's been too good for too long to go out like this. But I suppose it's the way of ballplayers. Robin Roberts hung on. So did Carlton. And now it's Raul's turn. Oh well.

Phils in interleague games: 6-4

Red Sox in interleague games: 6-7

Phils still on pace for 101 wins. They need to have a win percentage better than .561 the rest of the way to prove Jack wrong.

Cliff Lee has surrendered 21 hits in 42 IP this month.

That's insane.

cliff is within 9 innings of equaling grover cleveland alexander's 41 scoreless innings streak.

Hanson getting hit hard early in Seattle.

I was at the vet when 32 won #20 in 1972 this felt like that.

Many thought that the Aces being on the team together would raise the level of their performances a notch or 2. They have not disappointed.

Kennedy can really deliver the death blow here.

Did everyone else see that Dom Brown stopped picking up his leg as a timing mechanism? He had a high step when he was struggling and now he just lifts up his heel and puts it down. Looks a lot more ready for the ball.

And how good is Shane Victorino. He'll for for days at a time jumping at the ball. But over a season, he does a whole lot of things right at the plate. When I saw him in the minors, I thought he'd be a 20 homer guy. That seems a bit too many now, but he does have some unexpected power for a little speed guy.

There are no words for Lee's preformance this June. You just never want this run to end.

Brown really looked like a different hitter today. The homer was a mistake but, a sweet swing nonetheless. The double was a beautiful opposite field stroke on a pitch high and outside, and even the K was a solid at bat, seeing 8 pitches against a lefty alternating 95MPH gas and a decent off-speed pitch. If he can put it together with some consistency, this is a different team.

Game Score gives too much weight to K's. 2H-2BB SO, 2 batters over min. thanks to 2 DP's, and a score under 90.

The guy doing the Sweetspot blog on ESPN now did a live blog during the game. He said Brown's swing reminded him of Ken Griffey Jr. Said it looked like a real classic left-handed power swing. He added the caveat in all caps: I'M NOT SAYING BROWN WILL BE AS GOOD AS GRIFFEY.

Did i hear WIP quote Jason Weitzel of Beerleaguer? Did JW call in after the game tonight?

dom had a presence, a confidence in the interview with sarge that i hadn't seen before. something in his body language said "i belong here." and he is a very polite young man. he even gave a little bow to the camaraman filming his bystrom interview. it was kinda sweet.

I love this last line to the live blog by Schoenfeld:

"By the way, Cliff Lee has the third-best ERA among Phillies starters."

The difference in Dom is definitely the timing mechanism. Maybe we need to give some credit to GG or whoever figured it out. I always wonder how much a hitting coach has to do with the actual hitting. Seems a bit like alchemy. But there is a clear difference in Dom tonight from previously.

So, don't fire Greg Gross?

Aksmith - let's see if they can hit Lackey tomorrow before we decide about Gross.

I have been saying all spring training that Victorino was the key to improving the offense without Werth. Looks like he's having a career year, pulling off some of the slack for our other hitters.

Just read Gonzales is expected to play RF wednesday to get Ortiz in the lineup at 1B. Tough test for Worley.

Siked yall !!

Ph yeah.

Routine CGs, mid-2 ERAs, consecutive shutouts... at times it's hard to believe this is 2011 and not a century earlier. Hell, our pitchers even have deadball era evoking names.

Clifton. Colbert. Harry Leroy.

Roy Oswalt is one of the best pitchers of the last decade, a legitimate ace, and he's a distant forth on this staff. This team could run out a lineup of eight cloned Mini-Marts ever game and still have a .500 record. It's a wonderful time to be a Phillies fan.

I love that Lee "authored" the win tonight, per Weitzel. Very true!

Some June stats:

Starter W-L (Team W-L) ERA
Halladay 3-0 (5-0) 2.00
Lee 5-0 (5-0) 0.21
Hamels 2-2 (2-3) 1.45

Gotta love a 10-2 record and .800 team winning percentage in starts from the top 3, but I see these numbers and all I can think is that Hamels has gotten the shaft this month. Talk about being spoiled!

"This team could run out a lineup of eight cloned Mini-Marts ever game and still have a .500 record"

It's difficult to overstate how good this starting rotation is, but I think you just managed to do it.

Lets not get carried away with Dom Brown. He had one good game keep it in perspective. However he set the tone an Beckett look piss after he surrendered the HR. Lackey has been horrible this year. However you know the Phils have a tendency to make bad or mediocre pitchers look like Pedro Martinez(in his prime). Lets hope this isnt the case in game 2. RAJ now thinks we dont need the extra bat. Bad bad thinking RAJ we need the extra bat.RAJ are you not seen whats happening to Ibanez out there? Do we really Ben Fran to be starter. We need the extra RH batter simple as that.

Obviously claiming an Octo-Mart line up having a .500 record is a bit of extreme hyperbole. But only just.

Has anyone noticed the new post about Sabathia to the phils on yardbarker? Could RAJ be working his magic again?

CC can be our closer.

OK, so I guess everyone thinks Cliff Lee pitched a good game last night, huh?

"ESPN just pointed out Lee has more RBI's (2) than runs allowed (1) in his last 4 starts."

I don't believe you.

ESPN would say Lee has allowed more RBI. They are cool that way. Booyah!

I feel like I'm in a dream world watching this pitching night after night. Nobody pinch me.

Cliff Lee high-fived a bunch of recent college grads after the game. They immediately put that on their resume and have interviews with Fortune 500 companies this afternoon.

I think CJ already pointed it out, but it bears repeating that even with a loss tonight the Phils will be on pace to win 100 games exactly halfway through the season, a notion that was scoffed at and continued to be scoffed at by people like Jack, MG etc. for the past 3 months.

Edmundo, we're a long way away from the Robert Person, Omaar Daal days, aren't we?

jack: for iceman's sake, please dont say the phillies will win the world series. He may not know how to cope with awful reality that he will actually have to be upset if the Phils win it all, because that means you'll be right...which obviously would consume his entire life and drive him to insanity/suicide.

awh, or the which-one-is-your-ace days of Shane Rawley, Bruce Ruffin, and Kevin Gross.

What if we did get CC...

Does anyone really think the Yankees are going to let the Phillies get Sabathia?! Really? Besides, if the Phillies have to sign a Fatty McButterpants, I'd rather they sign one that can hit.

Rumor in the clubhouse: Lee solved the Riemann Hypothesis during the 7th inning stretch.

i havent read the full thread and i'm very curious...where did this sabathia news come from??

If there could be a worse site than Bleacher Report, it would be Yard Barker.

At least BR has slide shows of hot chicks.

Can't believe I fell for that phony post.

the jist (so no one gives YB any pageviews) was some female Yankees blogger (I'll call her "Mary Sue") was in a Starbucks talking to a Mariners fan (huh???) when a fat female Phillies fan comes up behind her and says CC sucks. But the Phillies will sign him in the offseason after he opts out. Then the Mary Sue spends the next 2 paragraphs saying why this proves Phillies fans are the worst.

Just a general observation, unrelated to last night's game...but it seems like the NL has WAY more good teams than the AL.

In the AL I see Boston and NY, both very good but flawed...not their best teams of the past 10 years for sure (Boston's '07 team was awesome, as was the '09 Yankees). And after that there is very little to get excited over...Tampa may actually be the third best team in that league, and they commonly go through dry spells on offense that would make Greg Gross blush.

In the NL the Phils and Braves IMO are clearly better than anyone in the AL that isn't Boston or NY. And then there are a lot of other teams that could arguably fit in behind them and ahead of most AL teams Brewers, Cards, San Fran, AZ (admit small sample size and may be a reach), Cinncy.

Anyway, just thinking out loud as I divert attention from work...was curious if others see the same thing.

Ha the Phillies aren't gonna get CC but it would be pretty awesome if they did

One hell of a performance last night. As it was on NESN, I simply watched it that way instead of online...thus no comments from me.

Our rotation is sick.


Also, Dom Brown=NOT READY. Look at his power numbers...he's making good contact and the ball is going out. Once his BABIP normalizes, he's going to look solid. Also, his stance looks better of late.

PA/HR
Howard: 21.56
Brown: 21.80

back to Cliff Lee for a moment. Some great quotes in this Crasnick article:
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=crasnick_jerry&id=6714838

I liked this one best:
"In the American League, you're a pitcher,'' Lee said. "Over here, you have to pitch, hit and run the bases. I just think it's fun. I feel more like a baseball player in the National League versus the American League.''

Just very fortunate right now. I was at the game on Sunday a Doc CG bested by Cliff Lee's CGSO last night. I can't recall being at back to back CGs.

If the WS does come down to the Phils and the Red Sox, who pitches game one? Lee has been incredible against the Red Sox but Halladay historically has not been.

Doc pitches game 1.

He's our #1 regardless of splits, history, phase of the moon, wind conditions, etc etc.

I was a few years from being born when Carlton had his killer 1972 season. Watching Cliff Lee in June, has me realizing how special it is to have one of your own that is that locked in on the same staff as Halladay and Hamels.

Enjoy this.

I think Rube made the right move getting more pitching. Its pretty ridiculous to have the 3 best pitchers in baseball in the same rotation.

Oh he definitely made the right move...hence why we should get him a beer

Assuming everyone's rested, Halladay will pitch Game 1 because he's the staff ace & Cholly will let him start. But you could make a case that the decision should turn, at least in part, on who's got home field advantage. When Lee & Hamels pitch, there's an extra bat in our lineup. You squander that advantage if you start them on the road.

Does the marginal chance of a hit from the 9 hole outweigh the ability to potentially get 3 starts out of Halladay? I don't think so. Halladay starts my game one and I keep that option open.

It is a giddy time to be a Phillies fan. You gotta love Cliff Lee. Is Orel Hershiser shivering in his boots as he sees this assualt on his scoreless innings streak record? I saw Orel last night on the CWS and he definitely needs tips on how to dress. He wore a loud shirt with a loud clashing tie. Cliff Lee would never wear such stupid clothing. I hear the Pope is waiving the death and five year wait rule for Cliff Lee's application for Sainthood.

BAP, that's true for the WS. In the first two rounds of the playoffs, it doesn't matter.

Either way, Halladay will and should be starting game 1 of any playoff series. While at their best, Hamels and Lee can match Doc at his best (save for his no-hitters), the fact is, Doc's consistency means that every time he steps on the mound, he gives you a better chance of being at his best and going 8-9 IP of 2 ER ball or less than the other two pitchers.

No slight to Lee and Hamels, but it's why Doc is the best pitcher in baseball. Hamels and Lee may be the 2nd and 3rd best pitchers in baseball (or at least top 5-10). Doc is the best. Simple.

Hugh: Yeah, good point. Halladay can pitch on 3 days rest, and could theoretically pitch Games 1, 4 and 7 if necessary. Neither Lee nor Hamels has ever started on 3 days rest.

If the Phils want to give him a gift in recognition of the shutouts, might I recommend it not being a tractor.

The other point on why Doc should be your game 1 starter: Doc is the pitcher best equipped to still be effective on a night when doesn't have "it". His pitches have such natural movement, he can get away more easily without his best command. Lee, as we have seen, is just a different pitcher when his command is off. Again, Lee is rarely off, that's why he's a stud.

The thread today reminded me that I hadn't voted for Allstars yet. Looking at my ballot, the NL has better players all over the diamond and will have the better pitching staff. a lot of the AL stars like Jeter & Arod have aged and they don't have the same level of young talent arriving, in my opinion.

JBird: All true. Unfortunately, it's one game & anything can happen -- which is yet another reason why it's absolutely asinine that so much rides on it.

I wanted to toss out an idea. It's not fully thought through, but I think it might make sense.

What about Oswalt in the bullpen when he returns? I mean, we don't know what's going on with his body, but it doesn't sound all that good. We know he wasn't performing well as a starter the last few weeks. I'm neither a doctor nor a pitching coach, but I would imagine it would be easier on him to throw 1 inning at a time as opposed to trying to go 6.

In the playoffs, the 4th starter is drastically reduced in importance (the only starter who would pitch only once in a 7-game series), and with Halladay, is there any doubt he could pitch effectively on 3 days rest if need be? You could go to a 3-man rotation.

Finally, Oswalt would instantly become our 2nd or 3rd most talented reliever, given the issues our pen has.

Thoughts?

It would be a damn shame if the Phils win 100+ games, get to the WS, and then don't have home-field advantage.

I think the Phillies transformation from being just another team to one of the "Big Three" with the Yanks and Bosox, teams that will jump up to the plate to get the players to make them winners has been a wake up call for the rest of the NL teams. The Phillies are now the standard bearer for the National League. The rest of the NL teams are now stepping up their operations because they now know the Phils are the bad boys in town and they better get their acts together or they'll be watching all the World Series on TV as the Philles take the field.

Jack, I don't think Oswalt to the pen is a terrible idea, but I think I would caveat it to say a very good starter is still worth more than a very good reliever...so I would be against Oswalt to the bullpen unless his health issues are such that he cannot pitch a full 6ish innings, but he could handle an inning out of the bullpen with minimal problems.

Lake Fred: You would think so. That has certainly been the case with the American League. One of the more convincing arguments, to me at least, for why the AL has been consistently better is that the competition between the Yanks and Sox has forced every other team to be smarter, spend wiser, etc.

The incentives might be less in the NL (with only one "juggernaut," you can still be just ok and compete for the wild card), but it's possible the Phillies' rising tide could lift the other boats as well.

I finally figured out a good way to get rid of having to listen to McCarthy, Wheeler and Sarge. I went to options and selected the Spanish audio broadcast of the game.

Good to see Dom Brown have a good game at the plate. Yeah, he hasn't lit it up since being called up, but he's still got a higher OPS than Ibañez, Francisco or Mayberry. And he's got the upside of having the potential to develop his talent by seeing major league pitching, instead of AAA arms. He's more than likely to improve as the season goes on, as he learns and adjusts to go after pitches he can hit.

I love this site.

We get a huge gem from Cliff and the rivers are running molten gold, bacon and cheese are suddenly health foods, and our wives are all perfect 10's and serving us beers in frosted glasses.....

The collective euphoria has reached it's peak..

If Worley gets shelled tonight we'll be talking about how the sun will never rise again and the entire team is on the brink of another run like the late 80's.....

Let's try to keep 'er between the lines huh?

Scratch, does that mean I have to learn to understand Spanish?

our trio is certainly top 3 in the NL, but Weaver and Verlander can easily make a case for best pitcher in the game.

what's amazing is what the phils have gotten out of their other two SP spots. oswalt/kendrick/worley/blanton combined have pitched to some very good numbers compared to other 4/5's.

Jack: I actually mentioned that very same idea on a thread a few nights ago. In fact, not only did I mention it; I actually predicted it would happen, both because of Oswalt's physical problems, as well as the Phillies' specific needs. If Worley & KK/Blanton can pitch at least adequately while Oswalt is away, I think the idea makes a lot of sense.

"I finally figured out a good way to get rid of having to listen to McCarthy, Wheeler and Sarge. I went to options and selected the Spanish audio broadcast of the game."

Or, mute the TV, put a cheap radio next to the TV, and listen to Franzke and Anderson instead.

Scratch: I also have watched many-a-Phillies games after hitting the SAP button on my television. It is wonderful button that I believe was invented for Phillies fans after HK passed away. I only understand about 80% of what is being said, but it sure has sharpened my Spanish.

I mean, come on, does it get any better than hearing:

Aquí es el tono...iLA PELOTAAAAA NO REGRESSSSAAAAAA! iUN JONRON DE DOMONIC BROWN!

To answer my own question: No, it does not.

Now i really want here to hear the Spanish broadcast of the Wilson Valdez Relief Pitching game.

Doc/Lee/Hamels ERA+ for 2011: 159/144/154

All three have made every start so far, and all three are averaging over 7 IP per start.

In terms of WAR:

Doc: 4.6
Lee: 3.8
Hamels: 3.7

I'd venture that 75% of entire rotations in baseball haven't gotten 12.1 WAR out of their starters. We've gotten it out of just 3 pitchers.

WAR: Pitchers
Roy Halladay 4.5
Jered Weaver 3.9
Cole Hamels 3.6
Cliff Lee 3.6
Justin Verlander 3.6

how lucky are we?????

BLer is like a teenager. Full of emotion and wild mood swings from day to day.

Beware of the darkside.

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