Results tagged ‘ Brewers ’

Phillies Sweep The Brewers

While the Brewers have not been playing well, having lost an entire home stand and all of their last 8 games, the Phillies did not take pity.  Instead, they put a beating on the Brew Crew, winning all 3 games of the series.

The offense was not as potent last night as the previous two games where they scored 19 runs combined, but the 4 runs yesterday were enough.  Starting pitcher Cole Hamels helped himself out at the plate with an RBI double in the second inning.  Placido Polanco and Wilson Valdez had one run knocked in each.  The 4th run was a bit more unconventional.  Chase Utley batted with men on 1st and 3rd in the 8th and swung at an awful, in the dirt pitch, striking out.  But the catcher missed the bouncing ball and Utley was safe at first base while Shane Victorino scored from 3rd.  Weird.

Because Hamels pitched a good game, those 4 runs brought the Phillies the 4-2 win.  Hamels allowed those 2 runs to the Brewers in the 6th inning by giving up 2 solo homers.  But before that, he was mowing the batters down with his fast ball-change-up combo.  Hamels made it through 6 2/3 innings with the bullpen holding down the lead.  JC Romero got the save and looked like he is back in top shape now since his off-season surgery.


Hoover2.jpgThe Phillies should get some good news today as it looks like Jimmy Rollins will be coming off the DL.  This is sad for Wilson Valdez who has been filling in for both Rollins and the still injured Juan Castro at short stop.  Valdez did not start out well, but he ended by going 5 for 15 in this series with 2 RBI.  And the 3rd back-up catcher, Paul Hoover, went 5 for 10 with 2 RBI and 6 runs scored in the series.  With two 3rd-string players performing so well, it makes you wonder if just putting on the Phillies uniform has some magical powers?  Abracadabra,  you are a major league player!  Poof!

While that may or may not be the case, the Phillies will take this kind of output from their back-ups anyway they can get it.  The Pirates are up next for a two game series.  Kyle Kendrick pitches tonight and game time is 7:05pm.  Go Phillies!

 

 

Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Two Day Hit Parade

explosion.jpgAn explosion of hitting broke out in Milwaukee this weekend.  The Phillies beat the Brewers both Friday and Saturday by wide margins with a lot of help from the offense.   In these last 2 games, Phillies hitters pounded out 28 hits and 19 runs, including 4 home runs.  The biggest bang came from Shane Victorino who collected 6 hits and 7 RBI in the two games combined.  And today, Paul Hoover, the 3rd string catcher, showed what he can do with 3 hits and 2 RBI to back pitcher Joe Blanton. 

The pitching was not as stellar as the hitting, but both Jamie Moyer and Blanton hung in there. 
Moyer blue.jpg
On Friday in a 9-5 win, Moyer went 6 1/3 innings allowing 4 earned runs and 1 unearned following last week’s historical complete game shut-out.  It was 70’s night at the park and the 47-year old Moyer looked quite at home in the old powder blue & magenta retro uniform. 

Blanton escaped the embarrassing powder blue spotlight by pitching today in the regular greys, but it did not help his performance at all.  He did well through 6 innings, allowing just 2 solo homers, but by the end of the 6th, he looked tired.  Blanton has just 3 starts so far as he was on the DL the first month of the season.  With that in mind, maybe the Phillies needed to break him in a tad slower?  Because when they sent him out for the 7th, he gave up 3 more runs.

The bullpen held the Brewers down on Friday and had a fairly easy time closing the game out.  That did not happen today.  David Herndon allowed 3 hits and a run in just 1/3 of the 9th inning.  With 2 men on base, Jose Contreras came in and loaded the bases, bringing the tying run to the plate.  But that’s ok, he struck out the next 2 batters for the first save of career and the Phillies won, 10-6.  Whew!

The Phillies have one more game with the Brewers tomorrow night at 8:05pm and are hoping for a sweep.  Cole Hamels will pitch.

And in case you had not heard, Pat Burrell was released by the Tampa Bay Rays today.  Burrell did not fare well as a designated hitter, batting only .218 since he left the Phillies after the 2008 season.  Do not look for the Phillies to do him any favors by taking him back; he cannot play the field effectively anymore and our current bench players are performing well.  Maybe in September they can bring him back to retire as a Phillie?  In the meantime, I wish him luck in finding a job.  Burrell will always be remembered in Philly for helping to bring us a World Championship :O)

UPDATE: This just in…Brad Lidge has been put on the DL with elbow inflammation (can I say now I told you so?).  Lefty Antonio Bastardo will be brought back up to take his place on the roster.

 

Moyer photo by ESPN; Explosion: USDOE

 

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

 

Game 2 of Doubleheader Postponed

Due to rain and snow in Colorado, Game 2 of yesterday’s scheduled doubleheader was postponed.  No date has been announced to play the game and the Phillies are not scheduled to go back to Colorado at all this year.  So, it should be interesting to see how they decide to make the game up.

 

In injury news, Carlos Ruiz has been listed as day to day with a sprained capsular ligament in his right knee.  This is a huge loss for the Phillies; Ruiz has been one of their hottest hitters and is leading the league with a .472 on-base percentage.  Cross your fingers that he gets well soon.

 

Jimmy Rollins is getting closer to returning to the team; he went 3 for 6 with two doubles in an extended spring game in Clearwater yesterday.  Today, he is scheduled to play short stop which will give a better idea of how the right calf is healing.

 

As for Brad Lidge, the news is not so sunny.  The soreness in his right elbow has lingered for several days now.  He is scheduled to see the team doctor today, but soreness usually indicates swelling.  Swelling is a sign that something is wrong.  While there is no diagnosis yet, my guess is that the Phillies had better start looking for bullpen help.

 

Today is an off-day for the Phillies; they will travel to Milwaukee next to play the Brewers in a 3-game series starting Friday night at 8:10pm.

 

 

*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*

 

Strange Brew

P7260632 Blanton.jpg

While I am not sure whether or not Charlie Manuel took advantage of my suggestions to wake this Phillies team up, they did still manage to steal a win today in strange fashion against the Brewers.  Joe Blanton had a horrible game; he gave up 5 runs in 5 2/3 innings with 7 hits and 4 walks.  Then, while the Phillies offense jumped all over the Brew Crew in the first 2 innings, they went back to sleep after that and watched a 6-1 lead become 6-5.

The Phils left the bases loaded 3 times without scoring and had 14 runners left on base total.  Shane Victorino and Pedro Feliz had 2 RBI a piece in one at-bat each, but struggled the rest of the game.  Feliz even hit into an inning ending double play with 2 runners on at one point.  Jimmy Rollins had 3 hits in the game, including a lead-off homer, the 33rd of his career.  But Rollins only scored that one time as no one could knock him in after that.

But for a change, the bullpen held the small lead down and the Phillies won the game.  Ryan Madson got a 4-out save and it looks like he will officially replace Brad Lidge in that spot.  This team has to be relieved to be heading back home to Philly where they now need 3 wins out of 7 remaining games to win the NL East for the 3rd year in a row.

Cole Hamels will take the mound for the first of a 4-game series against the Astros tomorrow night at 7:05pm.  The Phils were swept by the Astros in Texas earlier this year, so this will be a tough series for them.

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

Wake-Up Call

The Phillies need a serious wake-up call.  Having lost two in a row to the Brewers in wildly careless fashion, this team is starting to look like they are playing in a coma.  Two errors, a dropped ball by Jimmy Rollins that probably would have saved the game and bad, bad pitching dealt them a 5-7 loss last night.  The only player on the team who seems to be aware that it is the end of September is Ryan Howard who has gone 8 for 18 in his last 4 games with 10 RBI.  Everyone else has basically gone to sleep.

Yes, it has been a long season and they are all tired.  However, it is NOT nap time yet!  The division lead has slipped from 8.5 games down to 5 with the Braves playing like there is no tomorrow.  The Phillies need 4 wins in 8 games right now and it is possible with the way they are playing that they may not make it to the postseason.  Not likely, but surely possible.  And that possibility is the result of lazy, sloppy baseball played with no heart.

This team needs a swift kick in the rear…now!  Here are a few suggestions for Charlie Manuel to wake this team up:

·        Lock them all in a room and play Celine Dion albums at full volume until they reach the brink of insanity and decide to play better ball.

 

·        Pour buckets of ice down their pants – I am available to assist, of course.

 

·        Play the last 5 minutes of the last episode of “The Sopranos” over and over and remind them they will NEVER know how it really ends.

 

·        Thumbnail image for Phillies tutu teapots.jpgHire a group of midgets to sing “It’s A Small World” until their ears bleed.

 

·        Force the players to put on pink tutu’s and act out “I’m A Little Teapot” one at a time.

 

·        Babies crying – lots of them

 

·        Put their jock straps in the freezer over night

You can thank me later; always happy to assist.

The Phillies will play the final game of the Brewers series today at 2pm.  Joe Blanton is the final hope for this team to escape the road trip with a little dignity…especially after the humiliation of having to wear those pink tutu’s.  ;o)

Magic Number – sadly, still 4.

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

 

A Storm Is Brewing

I got my playoff tickets in the mail yesterday; NLDS, NCLS and World Series. The seats I was assigned are nothing short of awesome. This makes me very, very nervous. Why, you may ask? It is the “buy a snow shovel and it will not snow” theory…I have great seats to the playoff, so does this mean either the Phillies will not make it or get swept out of the 1st round a’la 2007? Hmmmm…

But the bad play of this Phillies team recently just adds more fuel to the fire swirling around my nervous brain. Brad Lidge has been an absolute disaster; we have NO closer. Half the pitching staff is injured.
funny-pictures-cat-with-invisible-snow-shovel.jpgOur catcher is down with a sprained wrist and it is unclear when he will return. Many of our starting pitchers look like they are throwing little league games. This is a snow storm of epic proportions but the Phillies forgot to but a shovel.

Cliff Lee piled on more concern last night when he allowed 7 runs on 9 hit in 6 innings to the Brewers and looked really bad doing it. It was as if the ball were attached to the opponents bat with an invisible string and they just could not help but get hits. Lee started out looking like the Cy Young winner of 2008 and in his last 6 starts, he is 2-3 with a 6.35 ERA. Yuck!

And Lidge? He was put in to get some work in the 7th inning and still cannot manage to get through a clean inning. Lidge allowed 1 run on 2 hits and a stolen base. Ugh.

The offense was facing a very bad Brewers pitcher with an ERA well over 6 and still, they only managed 1 earned run off the guy in 7 innings. Where were the bats? Ryan Howard had 2 hits and 3 RBI in the game, but the rest of the team basically took the night off.

In fact, this entire team looks like it is plans on taking the rest of the regular season off and hope that somehow, magically, it will all work out in the end. I have got news for them: the Braves are breathing down your necks. Take nothing for granted. Now go out there, and play ball! I am not ready for winter to come early. Thank you, Phillies in advance for your cooperation.

PS: Magic number remains at 4.

Phils Open Series On A Positive

After a disappointing series in Florida where Brad Lidge blew his 11th save, the Phillies needed a pick-me-up…quick.
Thumbnail image for P4190940 JHapp.jpgThe Brewers took care of that for them as the Phillies spanked them in the 4-game series opener by a score of 9-4. JA Happ took the mound and pitched 5.2 innings, allowing only 2 runs, 6 hits and he struck out 7 batters. Happ even helped himself out in the game going 1-2 at the plate with a single. The Phillies are Happ-Y to see the rookie back to form after some down time with an oblique strain; he now has the best ERA among rookie starters and is tied for the lead in wins.

Jimmy Rollins had the big blow in the game; in the 5th inning, he hit a 3-run homer which marks his 20th home run this year. Ryan Howard and Pedro Feliz also collected 2 RBI a piece and only Chase Utley and Jayson Werth were shut-out at the plate. Yes folks, even back-up catcher Paul Bako had 2 hits. Bako also got creamed at the plate saving a run on a throw from Shane Victorino. Bako is doing a nice job in the absence of Carlos Ruiz who is still out with a wrist sprain.

Ben Francisco started the game in place of Raul Ibanez who sat out with the stomach flu, we assume, thanks to Victorino who was ill last week. Francisco had 2 hits in the game and scored 2 runs; he has been a great addition to this team and a very nice surprise. Francisco came over in the Cliff Lee trade and it looks like we got 2 for the price of one.

Lee will pitch tonight against the Brew Crew – game time is 8:05pm. And the magic number is now 4!

Photo by Jenn

Lidge: 11 Strikes, And He’s Out…Or Is He?


The Phillies needed a win last night to bury the Florida Marlins and end any chance they may have at the playoffs.  Cole Hamels pitched 7 innings and allowed 4 runs on 8 hits.  Not a great day for Cole, but it kept the team in the game.

The team took a 6-4 lead into the 8th inning last night and after a 45 minute rain delay, Ryan Madson pitched the 8th.  Madson gave up a single, hit the next batter and eventually gave up one run to make it a 6-5 game.  Ok, fine.  They should still win the game, right?  Wrong.

P8306049 Lidge.jpgEnter (again) Brad Lidge: a double, a walk and 2 singles later, not only does Lidge blow the save, but he loses the game for the Phillies…again. 

11 blown saves later, a disgusting 7.48 ERA which leads all closers in baseball and what does manager Charlie Manuel have to say about it?  In a Forrest Gump moment, Manuel tells the media, “I’ve got confidence in him. I keep sending him back out there and hopefully he does the job. That’s about all I can say.”  Really?  Is that ALL you have to say about that???  OMG.

Ok, let me throw a cushion out there for a second – we all love Manuel and we all appreciate Lidge for what he did last year.  And as people, they are both very nice, dedicated and all-around good guys.  That being said, here come the pins in the cushion.  Lidge is DONE as this team’s closer, at least for 2009.  Manuel, as loyal as he is, needs to put the TEAM first and personal feelings aside.  He cannot continue to let Lidge hurt this team!

I sound like a broken record again, I know.  But how many more disasters does the rest of this team have to put up with?  They play their hearts out every game to win only to be let down by BOTH Lidge and Manuel.  Lidge clearly has issues and maybe he can work them out in the off-season and come back next year renewed.  But for 2009, he should be benched and if the team makes the playoffs, he should not even be on the post-season roster.

Note I said “if” the team makes the playoffs.  With a 6.5 game lead, it should be a lock.  However, if Manuel keeps throwing Lidge out there, I’d say the chances are closer to 50/50.  Give the closers role to Madson or Brett Myers, if he gets healthy or even JC Romero if he returns soon.  I would rather see Eric “unassisted triple play” Bruntlett (Phillies utility player) on the mound than Lidge at this point.  It is THAT bad.  So, why does everyone see this except for Manuel?

Charlie: I love ya, but if this team goes down in flames because of your loyalty to Lidge, the Philadelphia fans, media and maybe even the team management will tear you to pieces.  And how are the other players going to feel when their hard work goes down the toilet as a result?  I would not want to be in your shoes when this happens.

And so the Magic Number stays at 5 since the Phillies lost their series to the Fish, 1-2.  Up next, the Phils will play a 4-game series in Milwaukee against the Brewers starting tonight at 8:05pm.  I wish them luck and a “Lidge-Free” day.

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

 

Phillies’ Bats: Lost and Found

missing bats.jpg

Please help the Phillies find their bats!  Last seen on Tuesday during the 11-4 win over the Brewers, the bats disappeared after that game, never to be seen again.  The bats are an average height of 33 inches, beige in color and may be found crying for their mommies as they are lost and apparently, afraid of strangers.

Wait!  This just in: The bats have been located!  It took until the 9th inning tonight against the Marlins to find them, but it turns out they were hiding in the Marlins bullpen in Miami!  With the score 3-0 going into the 9th and one out recorded, it looked as if those pesky bats would be lost forever.  But then Jayson Werth caught a glimpse of them as he doubled; Raul Ibanez walked and Matt Stairs singled to bring 1 run in.  Could the bats have been recovered?  Well, it was only one run.

But wait!  There’s more!  Rookie Lou Marson, who up until this inning, had one of the only 3 hits in the game, drew a walk in the 9th.  Eric Bruntlett tried to crash the homecoming by striking out, but Jimmy Rollins kept hope of finding the bats alive with another walk. 

Victorino slam.jpg
Shane Victorino stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and 2 outs and, OMG!  He found the bats!!!!  GRAND SLAM Victorino!  Whoo Hoo!  And just to make sure there was no doubt, Chase Utley followed with another home run! 

The Phillies found the bats and scored 7 runs in the 9th inning!  Their reward?  A win!!!!  Phillies beat the Marlins 7-3!  And Brett Myers, who had a shaky start with 3 runs allowed in the first inning, can hold his head high.  He went 5 more scoreless innings to notch a quality start.  The bullpen held it down, and we have a very happy homecoming for the Phillies bats!  We hope they are here to stay!

Next Up

The Phillies will continue the 3-game series with the Florida Marlins tomorrow.  Game time is 7:10pm with Chan Ho Park on the mound.   Park will attempt to redeem himself after 2 sub-par outings.

And don’t forget to VOTE for your All-Star’s today!  Get your Phillies into the game!!  Vote a maximum of 25 times per day, per email address.

Photos by Jenn

***Visit the Phillies Phollowers Online Shop today!***

(Store is non-profit, but lots of fun!  I hope you enjoy our artwork!)

*Read more about the Phillies at MY OTHER HOME PAGE!  Phillies Phollowers has joined forces with Phightin’ Phils Phorum!  Remember also to check out the homepage, My Team Rivals and my very own Miami Dolphins page, The Dolphin Pod! 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 476 other followers