Results tagged ‘ Brett Myers ’

Age Battles Youth

After another solid start from pitcher Kyle Kendrick on Thursday against the Astros, the competition for the 5th starters spot is getting more interesting by the day.  Kendrick pitched 5 2/3 innings allowing just 1 earned run on 5 hits and 2 walks.  His spring ERA stands at 1.37.

 


Moyer J.jpgJamie Moyer
has only pitched in one “A” game so far and a bunch of “B” games, but he will face the Yankees tonight in his final bid for the 5th spot.  Moyer’s one regular spring outing ended with a 1.80 ERA for 1 run over 5 innings of work.  Tonight’s game then will likely be the deciding factor.

 

If Moyer does well, it looks like the spot may be his.  However, if he gets beat up by the Yanks, he still may get the nod anyway.  Although Kendrick has more than earned the spot and personally, I feel it should be his, the Phillies will probably go with experience over youth.  Poor Kyle has all kinds of factors working against him; his youth, Moyer’s huge $8 million dollar salary and the fact that Moyer has never been a bullpen pitcher.

 

Moyer did work from the pen a little last year when Pedro Martinez arrived, but only for extended innings, like after rain delays.  So essentially, he was still being used more as a starter than a bullpen piece.  Manager Charlie Manuel seemed very hesitant to put Moyer in for only a few batters which tells you that they were not confident about his ability to pitch out of the bullpen.

 

My prediction is that the Phillies will go with Moyer and put Kendrick in the pen.  After Moyer has a few bad outings, they will probably switch, just like Chan Ho Park and JA Happ did last season.  Then again, as with most predictions, anything can happen.

 

Reunion

 

The Phillies were reunited yesterday with former teammate Brett Myers who was the starting pitcher for the Astros.  Myers made Philly his home for 11 years, with the same team who drafted him. 
myers phils.jpg
Seeing him another uniform was strange.  Then again, considering how many ex-Phillies are with the Astros, including Myers, Pedro Feliz, Jason Michaels, Michael Bourn, and Gary Majewski, maybe we should all be Astros fans too?  Or maybe not…

 

Myers left the game early with a strained left groin, but it appears to be minor.  Afterwards, Myers spoke about the Philly fans saying, “I felt appreciated when I came out of the game and they all stood up and clapped for me. That was very respectful. Philly fans get a bad rap, but they’re loyal to the guys that played there and have done things for the organization. I really appreciated that. That was classy.”  Myers will be missed by many Philly fans and we wish him well…unless he is playing against the Phillies, of course ;o)

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Photos by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

This Week At Phillies Camp

The big news out of Phillies camp this week was Roy Halladay throwing live batting practice to a few of his teammates yesterday.  Although they were only tracking pitches, it did give Chase Utley and Raul Ibanez a chance to see Halladay in action.  Another player who stood in was outfield prospect Dominic Brown.  Brown told the media afterwards that because he was almost traded for Halladay, he felt compelled to take a few hacks off him.  He did not have much success, but it may be safe to assume it was a personal victory for the young player.

It appears also that besides Jamie Moyer and Kyle Kendrick, there is one more competitor for the 5th starters spot in the rotation.  Ryan Vogelsong, 32, began his big league career with the Giants in 2000 and was then traded to Pittsburgh the following year.  In his 6 years floating between the majors and minors, Vogelsong’s record stood at 10-22 with a 5.86 ERA in the majors with 315 innings pitched.  After leaving the Pirates in 2006, he travelled to Japan in an attempt to improve and make a few dollars.  Vogelsong grew up in the Philadelphia area and played ball at Kutztown University so he is thrilled to put on the Phillies uniform.  His chances of making the team are likely slim, but as in baseball and life, anything is possible.

As Spring Training progresses, a sign that games are not far away is the Phillies annual Phan Fest, which will be held tonight at Bright House field in Clearwater.  If you are in the Clearwater area, be sure to check out this event.  Gates will open at 5:30pm and admission is free.  There will be 2 sets of players there to sign autographs.  The cost is only $15 per table for three players.   The first table will have pitchers Kyle Kendrick, newcomer Danys Baez and the runner-up for Rookie of the Year, JA Happ.  The second table has another newcomer, catcher Brian Schneider plus outfielders Ben Francisco and John Mayberry Jr.


Thumbnail image for ST Phan Fest.jpgHaving attended Phan Fest for the last two years, I can tell you it is well worth the trip.  Aside from the autograph tables, there is a play area for kids, a photo booth which will be with Darren Daulton this year, a silent auction, opportunities to buy game-used merchandise, the Phanatic and a fireworks display to end the evening.  Last year, a few of the players including Ryan Madson, Chad Durbin and Brett Myers, brought their kids to the event and sat on the field to watch the fireworks.  Of those three, only Chad was there for the autographs; the others came on their own to spend time with their families which was very touching to watch.

And the countdown continues…

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Photos by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Catch & Toss

The Phillies found a back-up catcher today when they signed Brian Schneider to a $2.75 million, 2 year deal.  Schneider spent the last 2 years with the Mets and the previous 8 seasons with the Nationals/Expos.  The best news here is that Schneider was notorious for being a Phillie killer; pitching to him has been a 10 year nightmare.  Overall, Schneider is  a .251 hitter and should fit nicely into the back-up spot vacated by Paul Bako and Chris Coste before that.

And in a very odd twist to the situation, Coste has just been signed by the Mets!  P6216152 CCoste.jpgCoste started the 2009 season with the Phillies before being tossed and subsequently picked up off waivers by Houston in July.  The self-proclaimed 33-year old rookie is now in enemy threads which is sure to send shockwaves throughout Philadelphia.  Coste was well loved in Philly and many were unhappy with his departure.  Not to mention, many would rather see him retire than play in a Mets uniform.  It is a sad, sad day for Coste fans.  But look at the bright side; at least we will get to see him a lot next year :O)

As for the other holes in the line-up, like third base, no word yet except that midnight tonight is the deadline for all teams to offer salary arbitration to their free agents.  The Phillies are likely to offer arbitration to Chan Ho Park as they have stated they want him back next year.  Park may decline and decide to look around for a starting pitching spot as several teams have seemed interested in him.  If he accepts, he will be with the Phillies for 2010 and probably get a raise.  As for the other free agents, Bako and Eric Bruntlett are out of the picture with their replacements already signed in Brian Schneider and Juan CastroBrett Myers has already been shown the door, as has Jack TaschnerPedro Feliz, Pedro Martinez, Matt Stairs and Miguel Cairo are also unlikely, although Stairs and Cairo may be offered minor league deals. 

Ticket Prices

So, have we all looked at our season ticket invoices yet?  This is not a huge shock, but Phillies ticket prices went up again this year by $2- $4 per ticket.  Not only that, but some season ticket holders received worse seat assignments.  Someone I know got bumped backwards 2 rows in the same section.  So, we are now paying more for less?  While 2 rows is not earth shattering, traditionally, season ticket holders have been rewarded for their loyalty with better seats from year to year, not punished.

So yes, the World Series win in 2008 plus the return trip in 2009 do affect the prices, unfortunately.  But that does not make it any easier to swallow.  The money does not go towards improving the team or free agency; it is just more in the pockets of the owners.   And with the team winning now, they do it simply because they can.

Prices over the recent years have increased tremendously.  A seat that cost $42 in 2004 is now $58 for 2010.  The last year of the vet for the same seat was $26.   What I am wondering though is what happens when the team sucks again?  Do we become the Nationals with a stadium that is only 25% full?  I follow the team win or lose, but I will not pay those prices to see them lose when I can do that at home for free.  Then again, maybe they will never suck again…one can dream ;o)

So, did anyone else get there ticket invoice and wonder what happened?  Did you get the same seats or did you get bumped back?  What do you think about the prices?  Let me know in the comment section below.

Coste photo by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Will There Be An Early Christmas Halladay For The Phillies?

Oh yes, here we go again…  It is only mid-November and the Roy Halladay rumor mill is already in full swing.  While the Phillies were unable to strike a deal with the Blue Jays in July for the star pitcher and instead wound up with Cliff Lee (and we are all ok with that, of course), the Jays may still be looking for a chance to get Halladay off their payroll.

If the Phillies can manage a deal for Halladay, odds are they will have to pay much less for him than they would have in July since now he is only good for one potential post-season instead of two.  begging cat.jpgBut the Jays are probably still interested in the Phillies top prospect, Kyle Drabek, whom the Phillies are unlikely to part with.  In an interesting twist however, it has also been rumored that the Jays might be willing to take Cole Hamels.  Can I get a Hallelujah and an Amen to that possibility?!!

Although Hamels is six years younger than Halladay, he had a terrible season for the Phillies and most fans are sick of his emotional issues, media faux pas and lack of composure on the mound.  Odds are, not many people would be sad about such a trade.  Sadly, if this were rumored last season, there may have been riots in the street full of angry fans unwilling to let the World Series MVP go.  But now?  Not so much…

Besides upgrading the pitching staff, it appears the Phillies now need a third baseman as Pedro Feliz did not have his option picked up.  The Phillies can still sign him as agree agent if they come to an agreement, but it looks more likely that the Phils will look elsewhere. 

PA312135 Feliz.jpg
Feliz had a decent season, but I think he really screwed himself in the playoffs where he hit only .167, made unproductive outs in crucial situations and hit into double plays that killed rallies.  Plus, he is 34 years old, which does not help his case.

The top prospects for third base right now are Chone Figgins, Adrian Beltre, Mark DeRosa and former Phillie, Placido Polanco.  Figgins would be the best choice, although fans loved Polanco when he was here and many were upset when Chase Utley took his job.  Hind sight, as they say, is 20/20. 

Back in 2005 when Polanco went to the Tigers, many Phillies fans felt he should have been moved to 3rd base to keep him on the team, myself included.  As it turns out, had the Phillies done so, Polanco would likely still be with us.  Up to that point, he had moved back and forth from 2nd to 3rd base for years.  But after going to the Tigers, it was 2nd base all the way.  The question then with Polanco is, could he transition back to 3rd after more than 4 years steady at 2nd?  That may be too big a question for the Phillies to consider taking him.

So, third base is wide open right now and several other Phillies have filed for free agency; Chan Ho Park, Matt Stairs, Paul Bako, Pedro Martinez and Miguel Cairo.  The Phillies will not likely sign Martinez again, as he will command too hefty a salary and they need a more consistent arm.  Park is a possibility, Cairo and Bako will probably not be back and Stairs I am not too sure about.  My feeling was that he might retire, but since he has filed, I now do not know what is on his mind.  But this leaves the Phillies with the need for a back-up catcher, a right handed bat off the bench and a variety of pitching needs.

As for our walking wounded, both Scott Eyre and Raul Ibanez had successful surgeries yesterday and are expected to make recoveries before Spring Training.  Eyre may or may not decide to retire so his future is uncertain.  Ibanez, we hope, will be back to 2009 first-half form.  Brad Lidge will have surgery tomorrow.  What exactly is wrong with him will be an interesting revelation.  We should have more information in the days to come.

Feliz photo by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

The Walking Wounded

Is there a doctor in the house?  Apparently, there are a few very busy doctors in the Phillies clubhouse since the season ended.  It had already been disclosed that Scott Eyre was pitching the latter half of the season with bone chips in his elbow, so the fact that he will have surgery tomorrow is no surprise.  Eyre performed admirably despite the injury and ended the regular season with a 1.50 ERA in 42 appearances and a 2.08 ERA in the post-season.  His future is uncertain though; the Phillies may offer him a spot if surgery goes well, but he also may simply choose to retire and be home with his family.  It will be a while before any decisions are made.Phillies ER 1109.jpg

But the fact that Raul Ibanez was hurt the entire second half of the year was not disclosed until Sports Illustrated broke the story in late October that Ibanez was playing through both a sore groin and an abdominal tear.  Ibanez will have surgery Monday as well for a sports hernia.  But this begs the question, had the Phillies carried on without Ibanez and gave the playing time to a healthy Ben Francisco, would that have helped their chances to win the World Series?

Ibanez was hitting .312 before the All-Star break; afterwards, he hit only .232.  And in the post-season, he managed only a .259 average and a .481 slugging percentage.  Whether or not Francisco could have been a bigger producer if he was given the playing time prior to the post-season, we will never know.  But the Phillies had other options and instead left Ibanez in; it appears that may have hurt the team’s chances.  We all admire Ibanez for his determination, but the decision is questionable based on the results.

And then the big X-Factor, Brad Lidge.  The decision to keep Lidge on as the closer for the post-season may have single handedly destroyed the Phillies repeat hopes.  Because as it turns out, Lidge also had serious injuries for most of the year.  He will have surgery on Wednesday to remove loose bodies from his elbow and may also have damage to his right flexor tendon.  Whether or not the Phillies were aware of this before or during the playoffs has not been announced.  But it does raise eyebrows.

The Phillies were on the verge of a huge comeback in Game 4 of the World Series when Pedro Feliz knocked a game-tying homer in the 8th inning.  Had they won the game, the Phillies would have been tied 2-2 with the Yankees and momentum would have been on their side, especially with Cliff Lee pitching the next day.  But Lidge blew any chance of that happening when he allowed 3 runs in the 9th and dashed the Phillies hopes.  I strongly believe that was the turning point that handed the series over to the Yankees.

So the question then is, with such injuries plus his entire 2009 history, why was Lidge allowed to pitch?  Obviously, Lidge knew something was wrong.  If he did not tell, then shame on him.  If he did and the Phillies choose to let him go out there anyway, shame on the management.  Either way, the Lidge experiment, along with the Cole Hamels experiment and other injuries, took down the Phillies this year. 

And the real shame here is that there were other pitchers who could have filled in; JA Happ for Hamels, Ryan Madson or Chan Ho Park for Lidge.  You know the saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?”  Well, what is it IS broke?  That is a question the Phillies will be asking themselves all off-season.

In other news, Brett Myers was told he will not be with the Phillies next year.  He is currently a free agent.  Pedro Feliz is still in limbo with the status of his contract option.

Player photos by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Phillies 2009 Year In Review

2009 was an outstanding season for the Philadelphia Phillies in many ways.  Not only did they return to the World Series for the second consecutive year, but when you look at everything they had to endure to do so, the feat becomes that much more impressive.  Here is a look at the obstacles the team overcame in 2009 and also some of the season highlights:

 

Obstacles Overcome

 

  • The loss of our beloved Harry Kalas

  •  
    Thumbnail image for Kalas.jpgThe 2008 World Series hangover
  • Injuries to every member of the bullpen
  • Losing the #2 starter (Brett Myers) at the beginning of the year
  • Watching the #1 starter, Cole Hamels, go through weird injuries, bad luck and a very bad season

  • Hamels Myers.jpgJC Romero’s
    unwarranted 50-game suspension
  • Lack of production from the bench players
  • The June Swoon (11-15 record)
  • The struggles and eventual season ending injury of Jamie Moyer
  • The injury to Raul Ibanez right before the All-Star break; Ibanez went from super hot to totally not afterwards.
  • Offensive slumps throughout the year
  • A down year and very slow start from the offensive engine, Jimmy Rollins
  • Brad Lidge going from first to worst among closers

 

 

Highlights

 

  • The Ring Ceremony

  • P4088732.JPGThe White House visit

  • n23409805_46913024_2198875.jpgEric Bruntlett’s
    game-ending, unassisted triple play
  • Cliff Lee - a gift from Heaven (and Ruben Amaro Jr.)


  •  

    Thumbnail image for Lee in heaven3.jpgJayson Werth
    becomes a solid, productive everyday player
  • Pedro Feliz had off-season back surgery, recovered well and became a real contributor offensively
  • JA Happ emerged as rookie sensation with 12 wins and the lowest team ERA among starters (2.93)
  • Jamie Moyer wins career game #250
  • The Phillies visit with J-Roll Smurf (more of a personal highlight, but a highlight nonetheless)


  • smurfs phillies.jpgChase Utley
    – enough said
  • Ryan Howard becomes the fastest player ever to reach 200 career home runs
  • Ryan Howard knocks the most grand slams in Phillies history

  • Howard Utley.jpgA 3-game sweep of the Mets in July
  • The 10 game winning streak, July 8-21
  • The two Old Goats, Jamie Moyer & Pedro Martinez, combine to win 2 games in August that were split up by rain delays

  • 2 goats.jpg5 Phillies players, plus all coaches, go to the All-Star game
  • Jayson Werth steals home against Dodgers
  • Franchise record set for attendance and sellout games; 3,600,693 fans and 73 sellouts in 81 home games, finishing 3rd in baseball for total and average attendance
  • Return to World Series


PA040710.jpg 

Congratulations to the 2009 National League Champion Philadelphia Phillies! 

 

In other news:

 

  • The 2009 coaching staff have all been invited to return next year. 
  • Cliff Lee’s 8 million dollar club option was picked up (no surprise here) for 2010.
  • Raul Ibanez, Scott Eyre and Brad Lidge will all be seen by team doctors this weekend to determine if surgeries will be needed.  Eyre has loose bodies in his elbow and Lidge may have the same.  Ibanez has a tear in his abdomen and a hip issue.
  • No word yet on Pedro Feliz’s club option, but it will be decided by Monday.
  • Photos by Jenn, except White House

     

    *Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

A Frightening Performance

Last year on Halloween Day, the Phillies were celebrating by parading down Broad Street.  This year on Halloween Day, they took a spanking from the New York Yankees in Game 3 of the World Series with an 8-5 loss after a 1 hour and 20 minute rain delay.  Cole Hamels did not follow my instructions and wear his “Hamels: Version 2008” costume for the occasion.  Instead, Hamels 2009 took the mound and gave up 5 runs in 4 1/3 innings on 5 hits and 2 walks.  A scary Halloween, indeed, complete with cloudy skies, rain and a 1-2 game deficit in the series.


103109a.jpgThis has been the story for Cole all year long; he simply cannot be counted on.  He pitched well for 3 innings and then lost composure on a walk to Mark Teixeira that he felt should have been a strikeout in the 4th.  A-Rod batted next and launched a controversial home run; the ball hit a FOX TV camera which was sticking out over the field.  Instant Replay showed the hit and by rule, the interference made it a home run.  This brings up another point: why is a TV camera sticking out over the field?  They cannot back up a few inches?  That simply should not be allowed.  Way to go FOX.

It all fell apart after that.  Once again, even though Cole showed signs of impending disaster, manager Charlie Manuel sent him out for the 5th and again, left him in way too long.  He even allowed an RBI single to the pitcher, Andy Pettitte, who almost never picks up a bat.  3 runs later and this game was going downhill fast.  The bullpen could not hold the Yanks to those 5 either.  The next 3 relievers allowed one run a piece in each of the next 3 innings.


103109b.jpgAdd to that the horrible offensive display and Phillies fans are having flashbacks to slumps from earlier in the season.  The Yankees who had not been hitting in this series, like A-Rod and Nick Swisher, found Hamels to be the cure.  And the Phillies who were performing all post-season long, like NLCS MVP Ryan Howard, have seemingly lost their bats and cannot find them anywhere.

Jayson Werth looked to be the only Phillie interested in hitting; he knocked two solo home runs in the game.  Carlos Ruiz also hit a solo homer and walked twice.  The other 2 runs came off a walk to Jimmy Rollins with the bases loaded and a Shane Victorino sac fly.  And that was basically the sum total of the offense.


103109c.jpgAnother item that irks me here:  Eric Bruntlett was put in as a pinch hitter with a man on base in a situation where a home run was really what they needed.  Why not Matt Stairs?  Bruntlett should never be used as a pinch hitter unless they are looking to bunt.  He had a terrible season and looks like he could not hit the side of a barn.  Not to mention, he almost never hits homers.

Phils Yanks Gm3.jpg

As for Hamels, he is lined up to pitch Game 7, if it goes that far.  In my opinion, this should not even be a consideration.  Hamels has proven all year that he cannot get the job done, especially under pressure.  He should be done.  Come up with a mystery injury, replace him on the roster with another bullpen arm or bench player and send in Cliff Lee on short rest with JA Happ as his back-up.  If I was in charge, that is what would happen.  But since I am not in charge, hang on Phillies fans, it is going to be a bumpy ride if this goes 7 games.

The Phillies can try to tie up the series tonight with a win, but it will be Joe Blanton against CC Sabathia.  Blanton has not done very well this post-season and is sporting a 4.66 ERA.  Sabathia is the better pitcher, but does have awful memories of last post-season to overcome, including his lost battles with Brett Myers at the plate, a Grand Slam by Victorino and the banter of the home crowd.  Plus he is on 3 days rest, same as that game last year where the Phillies beat up on him when he was with the Brewers. 

My tummy hurts just thinking about this.  Plus, I have an awful hangover from last night’s game, and I did not drink anything but water.  Yet somehow, the nausea and headache still persist.  Hmmmmm….wonder why? ;o)

Here is the full Photo Album from Game 3.  I took a lot of photos of both teams, something I normally do not do.  I also got some great pre-games shots which include Hall of Famers and old-timers, Reggie Jackson, Mike Schmidt, Greg Luzinski and Garry Maddox.  Some are a tad blurry as it rained most of the game and I had water on my lens :O(  But I still did pretty well.  At least this will be more enjoyable than the game was :O)

Photos by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Game On

It is finally Thursday!  Just a few short hours until the Phillies and Dodgers begin the battle for the NLCS title!  The final roster decisions have been made and few were interesting; Chan Ho Park did indeed make the roster and Kyle Kendrick did not, as I thought would happen.  But in a surprise move, Brett Myers was also left off and Eric Bruntlett added.  So, 11 pitchers instead of 12 and 1 more bench player.

Myers was very unhappy with the news, but maybe not entirely shocked.  His one outing in Game 2 of the NLDS did not go well; he walked two batters and hit another.  After to injuries this year, it appears Myers is not able to find his control yet.

As for the starters, it will be Cole Hamels tonight and Pedro Martinez tomorrow…maybe.  Martinez told reporters he has not gotten enough work in and that his BP session was “erratic.”  Either he does not feel ready, or this is some mental game he is playing with the Dodgers.  Whatever the case, it makes you a bit nervous, doesn’t it?

Some other fun notes about this series:

- The Phillies will be facing lots of old Phillies!  Larry Bowa, former player and manager, is the Dodgers 3rd base coach.  Pitchers Randy Wolf and Vincente Padilla are both former Phils as well as slugger, Jim Thome.

- Manny Ramirez used to play for Charlie Manuel in Cleveland and Manuel says he is “like a son” to him.

- Chan Ho Park, Pedro Martinez, Paul Bako and Jayson Werth are all former Dodgers.

- Both teams each have 8 players who were born in 1975 or earlier.  LOTS of experience :O)

- This is the fifth time the Phillies and Dodgers have met in the NLCS; they are split 2-2 lifetime.

- At 21 years old, pitcher Clayton Kershaw is the youngest player on either roster and will start the game for the Dodgers tonight.

Game time is 8:07pm….Get the rally towels going in your living room!PA071279.jpg

Go Phillies!!!!

Photo by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

 

Regular Season Ends With A Walk-Off Win

The regular season is over for the Phillies and they closed it out with a win against the Marlins for a final season record of 93-69.  And as usual, it was not without high drama; oh, and extra innings too.  If we have learned anything over the years, it is that the Phillies do nothing the easy way.

Most of the bench players and rookies got some time in today to make their final bid for a post-season roster spot.  Miguel Cairo made his case, going 2 for 4 with 1 RBI and a triple that tied up the game when he scored after a throwing error by the Fish.  Ben Francisco went 2 for 3 with an RBI and a walk, however, he was picked off trying to steal THREE times.  No kidding.  Another thing we learned today?  Francisco is not allowed to attempt a steal…ever.


100409a.jpgThe pitching was a bit trickier.  JA Happ was only allowed to pitch 2 innings to save his arm for the post-season.  Sadly, he allowed 2 runs in the 1st inning which bumped his ERA up to 2.93 for the season.  Still, that and his 12 wins were an amazing feat for the rookie.

Kyle Kendrick may have pitched his way off the roster as he allowed 3 runs in 2 2/3 innings.  The lefty Sergio Escalona looked a little shaky too as he allowed a runner to score, although it was charged to Brett Myers.


100409b.jpgBut the real drama unfolded in the 10th inning.  Jayson Werth stepped to the plate with a runner in scoring position and 1 RBI needed to reach 100 for the season.  In a shallow and classless act, the Marlins manager intentionally walked Werth, taking away any shot he had at the milestone.  This game was meaningless to both teams, except for possibly a moral victory.  The Marlins had nothing to gain or lose.  In that case, an intentional walk is uncalled for and ruins the spirit of competition. 

Add to that, the Marlins pitcher who was told to walk Werth was Dan Meyer, a Philadelphia-area native who grew up in a nearby town, rooting for the Phillies.  He likely had tons of friends and family there to watch him, and what did they get to see?  Their hometown hero boo’ed mercilessly by an upset crowd who wanted to see the game played out the way it was meant to.  Poor Meyer!  This kid did not deserve to be put in that position.  Manager Fredi Gonzalez, you should be ashamed of yourself!

So Werth went without the 100 RBI mark, but the Phillies ended on a positive note.  Some guy named Paul who?…I mean, Paul Hoover, the 3rd catcher who spent the whole year in the minors, got the winning, walk-off infield single to score John Mayberry Jr. and end the game with a final score of 7-6.  The crowd exploded and the Phillies pummeled Hoover in adulation.


walk-off.jpgAfterwards, the players ran around the field tossing balls and t-shirts to the crowd in thanks for their support.  Shane Victorino threw a ball all the way to the upper deck, into the broadcast booth and announcer, Tom McCarthy caught it on the fly.

The celebration is over now and the real work begins.  The Phillies will take on the Rockies Wednesday; game time has been announced and it is 2:37pm…yuck!  Hey, thanks again MLB…right in the middle of the day while most normal people are at work.  Just sayin’.

Here is the Photo Album from today’s game.  Go Phillies!

Photos by Jenn

 

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

 

Phils Get Home Field

Even though the Phillies lost, again, to the Marlins yesterday, a loss by the Cardinals gave them home field advantage for at least the first round of the playoffs.  They will face the Rockies starting on Wednesday in Philly.  The Dodgers get the Cardinals.

Despite the loss, a few good things came out of the game yesterday. 

·        Jayson Werth now stands at 99 RBI for the season with 1 game left. 

·        Antonio Bastardo, who was with the team earlier in the season but got hurt, is now back and pitched a scoreless 7th inning.  Bastardo is a lefty, so this may be good news for the pen.

·        Brett Myers pitched a scoreless 6th inning and felt no pain since the hip surgery and shoulder injury.

·        Ryan Howard blasted home run #45 for the season.

·        Miguel Cairo went 1 for 3 and is making a good case as a bench player on the post-season roster.

·        Brad Lidge looked like he may have his mojo back – he pitched a 1-2-3 9th inning and looked sharp for the first time in a LONG time.  Maybe it was the change in music?  Lidge dumped Drowning Pool’s “Soldiers” in favor of Linkin Park’s “No More Sorrow” as his intro song.  I’d say that is fitting.

JA Happ will pitch today in the final game of the regular season and try for lucky win #13 to make his case for Rookie of the Year.  Game time is 1:35pm.

Congress & Steroids Revisited

Yesterday, I posted some information on a CBS article that covered a possible Congressional inquest to see whether the regulations on dietary supplements should be revised by Congress.  Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter was made aware of the issue because of JC Romero’s suspension when he took a supplement that was illegally tainted.  Some felt that Congress should not worry about such issues and here is my response:

Senator Specter was made aware of the issue because of baseball, which is always in the limelight, but that is NOT the big picture.  This is beyond baseball.  It is about innocent people everywhere going to stores like GNC, which is in almost every major shopping mall in the country, and buying their vitamins and supplements and getting more than they bargained for.  I am one of those people.

I take a variety of vitamins and supplements which my doctor advised for various medical conditions.  These pills are not properly regulated by the FDA, which means you cannot know for sure what you are taking.   We all try to buy from reputable sources, but the bottom line is, companies can and will taint their products with illegal and dangerous substances either to save a buck or get you hooked so you will buy more.  I hope the only thing in my Vitamin C pill is Vitamin C, but do I know that for sure?  No.

These companies are putting people’s lives at risk.  Personally, I do not want steroids or anything else that could hurt or kill me in my supplements, do you?  So while the steroid issue in baseball may have been the catalyst for looking into the matter, it is not the main issue.  Congress does have plenty of issues to tend to, but regulating these drug companies is important as well.  Remember that the next time you take some Ginkgo Biloba, Glucosamine and Chondroitin or any other supplement which is unregulated.

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*

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