Results tagged ‘ Carlos Carrasco ’

Victorino Suspended; Giants Get Slap on Wrist

Phillies centerfielder Shane Victorino has been suspended for three games following Friday’s bench-clearing brawl.   Giants pitcher Ramon Ramirez purposely hit Victorino with a pitch and the catcher Eli Whiteside attempted to tackle Placido Polanco for rushing to Victorino’s aid.

The other three players, Ramirez, Whiteside and Polanco received fines of undisclosed amounts.

Yes, the two Giants who started the whole ruckus did NOT get suspended.   

So what the league is saying is that pitchers can now throw at guys without fear of suspension, even if it is blatantly intentional?  And then teammates can tackle guys to escalate the situation, also with no real consequence?  Wow.

I understand that Victorino shoved the umpire, which is very bad, so I have no problem with the three games if the Giants players got at least one game each for starting it.  But this ruling gives the impression that it was all Shane.  It is nothing but a slap on the wrist for the two Giants players who started the whole incident.

And Polanco? All he did was rush to help Victorino with what appeared to be intent to get Victorino out of there before the situation got too intense.  Instead, Polanco gets tackled and then fined?  Ridiculous.

Ramirez threw at Victorino intentionally.  The umpire was issuing him a warning right as things got heated.  The rookie umpire should have tossed Ramirez from the game initially.  But regardless of the rookie error, Ramirez is the one who caused the incident.

And had Whiteside not tackled Polanco, the brawl would have been nothing more that harsh words tossed around.  Victorino was wrong to shove the umpire, but the situation does not even get to that point if Whiteside does not act like a fool, jumping around and looking for a reason to fight.

This is clearly bias by the league.  And I’ll bet Jered Weaver is pissed; he just got a 6-game suspension for intentionally throwing a pitch at Alex Avila last Sunday.  And do not forget Carlos Carrasco who was given the same suspension for throwing at the head of Royals DH Billy Butler last Friday.

Granted, tossing at the head is worse, so 6 games makes sense, and they are starters.  So one or two games for a relief pitcher like Ramirez should be automatic by these standards.  Still, the league gives Ramirez a slap on the wrist with just a fine.

Victorino is appealing the suspension, as he should.  Because this is a huge load of crap and a disgusting display of prejudice by the league towards a guy with a reputation of being easily excitable.

Hey MLB – BOO!  Bad call.

 

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Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

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Cliff Lee Joins The Phillies

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No more worries about Roy Halladay, trade deadlines and who is going where…the Phillies sealed the deal today with Cy Young award winning pitcher, Cliff Lee.  Lee comes to the Phillies from the Indians sporting a 7-9 record and a 3.14 ERA; his record is tainted though due to lack of run support from a struggling Indians team.  And last year, Lee won the AL Cy Young.  Without giving away either JA Happ or Kyle Drabek, the Phillies made the trade and also received outfielder Ben Francisco who will likely take John Mayberry’s spot on the bench and help to relieve Raul Ibanez.  Off to the Indians are pitcher Carlos Carrasco, catcher Lou Marson, infielder Jason Donald and pitcher Jason Knapp. 

While I am thrilled with this deal, and even more thrilled that we did not lose Happ or Drabek, I will miss Marson and Donald.  I had the opportunity to chat with them both over the last few years and they are really nice, down to earth guys.  Not to mention, they are both adorable :O)  Ok, so I guess I will get over it. ;o)

A few more reason this is a GREAT trade; Lee will cost considerably less than Halladay next year; his option is 9 million, where Halladay’s is 15.75 million.  In addition to keeping Happ and Drabek, the Phillies also retained top prospects Dominick Brown and Michael Taylor.  Essentially, the farm system will not suffer.

And a few more odd reasons this is a good trade:

-         Lee’s name is easy to spell.

-         Cole Hamels will get less attention from the media, thus, we do not have to hear as many weird things come out of his mouth.

-         Our bullpen will have someone new to play with :O)  Not sure who that will be yet…

-         Lee looks good in red.

-         Lee is from Arkansas!  Actually, I am not sure why that is good, but maybe he knows President Clinton?  Just a thought…

The final game of the D-Backs series is about to begin…Go Phillies!

Photo: umpbump.com

 

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D-Back Series Starts With a Win

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Last night, the Phillies took game 1 against the D-Backs in Arizona with Jamie Moyer pitching 6 2/3 scoreless innings.  They were not easy innings; Moyer worked his way in and out of trouble again and again.   But Moyer has been doing this a long time and knows how to make adjustments when he needs to. 

The offense took a while to wake up after the long haul out to the West Coast, but finally in the 4th, Ryan Howard got things rolling with a 2-run home.  Raul Ibanez had 2 hits and 1 RBI in the game as well. 

Ryan Madson did allow 2 runs in the 8th, but the Phillies still went on to win 6-2.  With the 6 hits and 4 walks allowed by Moyer, the D-Backs left 11 runners on base and committed 2 errors in the field.  You have to wonder if ace pitcher Dan Haren was looking on and wondering what it might be like to play in Philadelphia?  Haren is one of 3 pitchers that the Phillies are rumored to be interested in adding to the club and he will face Cole Hamels tonight in the 2nd game of the series at 9:40pm.

However, the most likely names on the horizon as the trade deadline approaches are Roy Halladay of the Jays and Cliff Lee of the Indians.  The Jays reportedly rejected an offer from the Phillies which included JA Happ, Michael Taylor, Carlos Carrasco and Jason Donald so, it is looking less and less like a deal for Halladay may be realistic.  But, stranger things have happened.

The countdown to July 31st continues!  Go Phillies!

Photos by Jenn

 

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Will The Real Cole Hamels Please Stand Up?

Where has the NLCS and the World Series MVP gone?  Certainly, he is not the same pitcher who is currently 4-5 with a 4.98 ERA?  Oh heck, make it an even 5.00.  And tonight, his problems were more magnified than ever; Cole Hamels pitched only 4+ innings and allowed 7 earned runs as the Phillies went down 1-11.  Seven runs against an Atlanta team that everyone said had NO offense; well, I guess they were just waiting for the Phillies to come to town.Hamels 0709.jpg

But what is the problem with Hamels?  First, he is leaving way too many pitches up in the zone.  This is not his typical style, but suddenly, it has become a real issue.  Second, he is pitching frustrated.  In recent days, the previously cool and confident Hamels has become a whiny crybaby with the umpires and has a general look of dissatisfaction on his face all the time.  But why?  For a guy who has had this much success at a young age, he has no reason to pout…with the exception maybe of his last several outings.  He was the 2008 World Series MVP…he bought a brand new luxury condo in Philly…his wife is expecting their first child…everyone worships him.  So, what is the issue?  Where did the smile go?

Then again, this entire team has seemingly lost their Mojo over the past month.  Just ask Jimmy Rollins; in fact, the only guy who’s Mojo appears untouchable is Chase Utley who is still batting .301 despite his team’s struggles.  And where has Ryan Howard’s big bat disappeared to?  He has not hit a home run since June 20th (that is 32 at-bats) and is hitting .240 overall this past month.  The most feared offensive team in the league has turned into a welcome relief to opposing pitchers who are now anxious to mow the Phillies down.

This is where Charlie Manuel’s short comings will come to light.  Don’t get me wrong, I love Charlie.  He has been the manager that this team has needed and he performed THE miracle by bringing the World Series Championship home.  And Charlie is a super nice guy; but that is exactly the issue.  He is too nice sometimes.  Sorry Charlie, but it is time to start banging heads together in that clubhouse.  The “nice” approach worked for two games, and now, they are right back in a funk. 

Not only that, but he should manage without worrying about making everyone happy.  When asked why he started Paul Bako at catcher tonight, a career bench guy, Manuel said he felt that because Bako was there with the team, he needed to play sometime.  I hate to disagree, but as the manager, Manuel does not owe anyone anything.  It is not Manuel’s job to soothe ego’s; it is his job to win games.  And no offense to Bako, but he is hardly the spark plug this team needs right now.  Forget about getting guys their playing time; play the guys who will produce.  And if Rollins cannot hit, move him down in the line-up.  There is no sense in him getting 5 at-bats a game when other players are hitting better.  No one cares how unhappy it makes Rollins, and neither should Charlie.  Get him out of the funk, then move him back.  Jimmy should be willing to do what is best for the team, and he knows that.  A little tough love is in order here.  The rest of the NL East is creeping right up on top of the Phillies and they will be out of first place this week if nothing changes.

The New Starter?

Rodrigo Lopez will, at least for now, occupy the hole left in the line-up by Brett Myers who is down for the season after hip surgery.  Lopez pitched for the Rockies in 2007, then had Tommy-John surgery.  Coming back from his injury, he signed a minor league deal with the Phils in March and has gone 5-4 with a 3.91 ERA in 13 starts this season with the AAA Iron Pigs.

Most expected to see Carlos Carassco in this spot, but that is not the way it will pan out.  However, this move may be a sign that GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has a trade in the works and did not want to bring up a young gun for a spot start.  If you are going to bring in a guy like Carassco, you are probably thinking that he will be in long term.  Since they did not do that, it leads me to think there may be something cooking.  Let us hope so…

Last Day To Vote

One day left; please keep VOTING for your Phillies All-Stars.  VOTE up to 25 times per day, per email address!  Voting ends at 11:59 PM ET tomorrow, Thursday, July 2, 2009.

Hamels Photos by Jenn

Eminem by http://graphicshunt.com

 

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Phinally – A Series Win

The Phillies wrapped up the series with the Blue Jays today and also ended interleague play for the year…finally!  As usual, interleague play was not kind to the Phillies and most are happy it is over.

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However, there were a few highlights, including JA Happ’s first career complete game shut-out yesterday.  Happ allowed only 5 hits in the game and gave the bullpen a much needed rest.  The Phillies offense found their bats after a spanking from manager Charlie Manuel in a closed door meeting, and the team racked up ten runs in the game for Happ.  The very Happ-Y pitcher is now 5-0 on the season with a 3.00 ERA.

Today, the Phillies sent Jamie Moyer to the mound and he allowed 4 runs in 5 innings, including 3 home runs.  After the 5th, Manuel decided to take advantage of his rested pen and sent Chan Ho Park in who pitched 2 scoreless, hitless innings.  It is nice to see Park finally settling into his role and feeling good after getting hit with a batted ball two days ago.       

With the Phillies up 5-4 in the 8th, Ryan Madson was set up to have an easy inning; he got the first out, Scott Rolen hit a single, but then a routine double play ball to Eric Bruntlett turned into a disaster.  Bruntlett, filling in for Jimmy Rollins the last 3 days, dropped the ball leaving 2 runners on with only 1 out.  Poor Madson was sweating by the time he got to the 3rd out, but he got there and Pedro Feliz snagged a pop-up to end the threat.

Brad Lidge came in to get the save and, as usual, it was an adventure.  A bunt single, then a walk and hearts were racing again.  But Lidge got a pop-out, another out on a run down and finally capped it off with Bruntlett snagging a grounder and tossing to Ryan Howard for the final out.  Whew!  Finally…a series win.  Time to exhale…

Iron Pigs (AAA)

Pigs (28).jpgYesterday, I attended an Iron Pigs game and saw Drew Carpenter pitch.  Carpenter has been a highly touted player in the minors and he did pitch a shut-out through 8 innings.  However, his fastball tops out at around 80mph (or at least it did last night).  Solid pitcher, but I am not sure the Phillies need another Jamie Moyer in the rotation.  Carlos Carassco and Kyle Drabek (AA) may still be possibilities to fill the hole left by Brett Myers.  Going outside the organization to get an experienced arm would be much better, but there are still very few pitchers available.  We shall see…

Mike Cervenak (photo) is doing very well after suffering a broken wrist last month; he was 2 for 5 in the game and is batting .313.  Mike Spidale (OF) led the pack with 3 hits and is batting .353; and Lou Marson (C) has been doing better of late – he had 2 hits and 2 RBI last night. 

Here is a PHOTO ALBUM from the Iron Pigs game, including shots from the fireworks show afterwards and even a 3-D fireworks shot!  I held the camera up to the 3-D glasses and it actually worked…check it out!

Up Next

The Phillies have the day off tomorrow to travel to Atlanta for a 3 game series before returning home on July 3rd to face the Mets.  Joe Blanton will pitch on Tuesday; game time is 7:00pm.

VOTE

The clock is ticking…please keep VOTING for your Phillies All-Stars!  VOTE up to 25 times per day, per email address!  Voting ends at 11:59 PM ET on Thursday, July 2, 2009.

Photos by Jenn

 

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Myers May Have Surgery

Comcast Sportsnet reported today that Phillies pitcher Brett Myers may need to have surgery for a frayed labrum in his hip.  Translation:  We are SO screwed.  UGH!  In fact, when the news was announced, here is what happened:

The frog is obviously a Phillies fan.  Poor little guy.

Myers will get a second opinion, but either way, this is NOT good.  He has been the Phillies best starter next to Cole Hamels and even has 2 more wins than Hamels.  This constitutes a huge disaster for the Phillies who will now either have to pay a large price to replace Myers or go fishing in the farm system and cross their fingers.  Kyle Kendrick does not appear ready to return to the majors and Carlos Carrasco still needs work.  What should they do?  Here are a few suggestions:bad pitching.jpg

No?  Ok, back to the drawing board then.  I’ll let you know when I come up with the answer…I mean, besides actually having to pay someone Adam Eaton-type money.  What a thought…yikes!

Star Wars – SI.com

Mariah – http://www.gaysportsblog.com

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Chan Ho Must Go

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Ask me how I really feel…  Ok, well, Chan Ho Park doesn’t have to go far…maybe just to the bullpen where he should have been to start with.  At this point in his 16-year career, Park no longer has what it takes to start.  Park started 4 games this season and here is his ERA in each one: 13.50, 7.20, 5.14 and today, 13.50.  Including one inning he pitched in another game early in the season, Park’s ERA for the season so far is 8.57.  Not only are the numbers bad, but he has only gone beyond 5 innings one time, which is taxing our bullpen.

Today’s start was a disaster.  Park lasted only 4.2 innings, gave up 7 earned runs and walked SIX batters.  Mets fans everywhere thank him.  Phillies fans would like to see heads roll.  How much more do we need to see out of this guy before designating him to the pen? 


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The Phillies have JA Happ who would love a shot at starting; Carlos Carrasco would be thrilled to come up to the majors; and even Chad Durbin would not mind taking over if needed.  Options abound.  Why then not take advantage of them?

In fact, the score may have been much worse if not for the Phillies great defense.  Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard bailed Park out with an amazing double play in the 1st inning, after he had already dug an 0-2 hole for the team.  Raul Ibanez made a super sliding grab in the outfield later as well.

Our offense struggled again, but still scored 4 runs, despite a 6th inning base running blunder by Chris Coste and Greg Dobbs, who looked like Laurel & Hardy on the base path.  Both were caught between bases after a Mets error and Coste was tagged out.  Rollins was also caught stealing for the 2nd time this season.  But the Mets were sloppy as well; the Phillies simply did not take advantage.

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I suddenly feel the need for some comic relief.  This cartoon always makes me laugh.  As the series with the Mets moves on to game 2 tomorrow at 3:40pm, try to think happy thoughts.

As always, don’t forget to VOTE your Phillies into the All-Star game!  VOTE up to 25 times per day, per email address!

Photo by Jenn

Happy Bunny by Jim Benton

 

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Outta Here!

Many baseballs left the ballpark today, as well as many players.  Marcus Giles, who batted only .167 this spring, was given his release today.  This was the best option for Giles who would not see a lot of action in the minors; this way, he has a chance to move on to another team.  P2222389 Mayberry.jpgJohn Mayberry Jr. and Carlos Carrasco were both optioned back to the minors.  Mayberry started off hot in camp this year, but struggled as the pitching became more difficult.  He needs some more work to be big league ready, as does Carrasco.  Three other players were told officially they would not make the team’s 25-man roster, but they will stay with the Phils until Saturday to give Charlie Manuel a few more options during the On Deck Series.  The three players are Philadelphia native, Mike Koplove, RHP; 2nd baseman Pablo Ozuna; and outfielder Jason Ellison.

This leaves Miguel Cairo as the only extra right-handed bat, unless a trade is pulled off in the next few weeks.  Cairo has not hit as well as Ozuna this spring, but he can play multiple positions and has a great deal of experience.  Also, the Phillies are required to release Cairo if he does not make the 25-man roster, which may play into the decision.  Rumor has it also that Matt Stairs and Geoff Jenkins are up for grabs; however, the Phillies are going to have a hard time getting rid of either as Stairs is nearing retirement and Jenkins is well over-paid.

Also still up in the air is the 5th starter’s spot.  Chan Ho Park has made this a very difficult decision; today he pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up 6 hits, 1 walk and only 1 earned run.  Park also struck out 7 and now has an ERA of 2.53 in 21 1/3 innings.  Lefty JA Happ currently stands at 20 innings with a 3.15 ERA.  Things being fairly even, Happ is still the best choice to start as Park has a proven track record as a reliever and Happ is not so comfortable in that role.  Plus with the addition of lefty Jack Taschner, there is less need for Happ, also a lefty, in the pen.  Park would be horribly disappointed in the decision if it goes that way, especially since he gave up pitching in the WBC this year, so does his mental status play into this as well?  That remains to be seen…

The Phillies bats are heating up in preparation for Opening Night as evidenced by four home runs today from Jimmy Rollins, Eric Bruntlett, Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz. 

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7 of the Phillies 13 runs in the 13-3 victory over the Astros came off the long ball.  And Bruntlett in particular had a fun day against his former team, going  3 for 4 with 4 RBI.  With all this power unleashed, it makes you wish these guys would save a bit for the real thing.  Only 6 days left!

Brett Myers, now scheduled to start on opening day, will pitch tomorrow against the Blue Jays at 7:05pm.  Cole Hamels got into a minor league game today and said he felt no discomfort.  Hamels is tentatively scheduled to start with the Phillies on April 10th against the Rockies.

(All Photos by Jenn)

 

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Madson Sticks Up For Romero

Early in March, Ryan Madson called into the Preston & Steve radio show on WMMR and gave a very entertaining interview.  I managed to snag a clip from that interview; the segment you will hear begins with Madson defending teammate JC Romero for what most have come to see for what it is; a totally bogus and ridiculous 50 game suspension.  Madson shares his thoughts on the subject.  After that, you will hear a very funny story about how Madson celebrated his World Series victory at a TGI Friday’s in Southern NJ.  I am not kidding; apparently, he is there so often, that he even hangs out and plays video games with the staff.  You will have to hear it for yourself:

http://webjay.org/flash/dark_player

In other news, the Phillies took a pounding today from the Yankees in grapefruit league action; but on the upside, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard went back to back with the long ball in the first inning.  Sadly, the scoring ended there. 
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Carlos Carrasco got some work in; he pitched 5 innings, gave up 6 hits, 4 runs and a walk.  Brad Lidge pitched a scoreless inning and looks like he is ready to go, injury free.  Poor Scott Eyre had what one might term as an “off” day, surrendering 5 runs in 1 inning, 3 of which came off home runs.  It was looking like the inning that may never end for Eyre; he probably couldn’t wait to get out of there.  Relax though…it’s only Spring Training!  Take 2 and call me in the morning…

Another player who may have been experiencing a somewhat long day was Ronny Paulino.  Rumor has it that Paulino is up for grabs and the Phillies will be trying to showcase him to other teams in the next week or so. 
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As such, Paulino played all 9 innings today.  Paulino had 1 hit in today’s game, bringing his average to .194, but that is certainly not a lot of bait to reel in many potential suitors.  Regardless, this is good news for Chris Coste who now appears to be a lock for the back-up catching spot.  Phillies fans everywhere are breathing a sigh of relief for Coste :O)

The Phillies will travel to Kissimmee, FL tomorrow, right next door to one of the happiest places on earth, to take on the Houston Astros at 1:05pm.  If anyone returns wearing Mouse ears, I hope someone will send me a photo.  Thank you in advance :O)

(All Photos by Jenn)

 

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Who Is In; Who Is Out


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Cole Hamels,
the “IN” man of the hour, may be in trouble with the little wifey after she sees this photo; Hamels is on the cover of the April edition of Access Magazine from Direct TV, along with Fox sports reporter, Charissa Thompson.  Ok, well, maybe not so much trouble.  After all, he spends most of the interview talking about his wife, Heidi.  She apparently taught him everything he knows, from dealing with “celebrity” to how to entertain his teammates.  You will see a few photos from that article throughout today’s blog.  All photos were taken by Jim Wright.  Enjoy!

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Kendrick Gets The Boot

Kyle Kendrick was sent to the minors today, as many anticipated he might be after a very rough spring that has ended with a 9.20 ERA.  Kendrick had an outstanding rookie season with the Phillies in 2007 when he went 10-4 with a 3.87 ERA; then in 2008, he began to have trouble, and he finally lost the starting job after a 6 game stretch with an 11.35 ERA beginning in August.  The race for the final starting position is now down to JA Happ, Chan Ho Park and possibly Carlos Carrasco.

Hamels003.jpgSchilling Retires

Curt Schilling, who spent more than 8 years with the Philadelphia Phillies, has officially retired.  From playing baseball, that is.  No word yet on if he plans to retire from publically voicing his opinion on everything from steroids to which former teammates annoyed him.  Phillies fans adore Schilling if not for his fearless opinions, but for his pitching and dedication to his job.  With a career record of 216-146, plus 3,116 strikeouts, he will be missed in the baseball world.

 

 

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