Results tagged ‘ J.C. Ramirez ’

Dead Men Walking: The 2013 Phillies

In their 4th consecutive loss on Wednesday night, I do believe the Phillies finally rolled over and died.  They did not just lose 4 games, they were slaughtered in the ugliest and most painful manner possible.

Every problem this team has had this season was glaring in last night’s 3-11 drubbing, courtesy of the Cardinals.  It was a proverbial highlight reel of all that is wrong with the 2013 Phillies.  First, the starting pitching has been wildly inconsistent.  John Lannan had 2 solid outings in his last few attempts; but last night, he was run out of the game after only 4 innings with 4 runs allowed.  In the 4th inning, Lannan walked the opposing pitcher who then proceeded to steal second base and score after a single from the next batter.

Next, the defense was pitiful.  John Mayberry Jr. summed up 2013 defense with a Little League play in the 5th inning that allowed 3 runs to score.  He dove for a ball that he had zero chance at catching in the air, only to watch the ball sail past him into deep center field.

And then there was the awful bullpen performance.  J.C. Ramirez allowed 5 runs in one inning of work.  Jake Diekman added 2 more for the Cardinals in the 8th.

And how about that offense?  What offense, you may ask yourself.  Exactly.  The Phillies have scored 4 runs total in their last 3 games.

But the whipped topping on this sh@!! sundae has got to be all of the injuries.  Domonic Brown was pulled from the line-up with concussion symptoms.  Ben Revere, the hottest hitter in June and July, went down earlier this month with a broken foot due to a foul ball.  Ryan Howard is out with knee issues.  Roy Halladay is recovering from shoulder surgery.  And the list goes on…

The trade deadline is less than a week away.  If GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has half a brain, he will begin selling as many players as he can and give this team some hope for the future.  And if he wants anyone to attend games for the rest of the year, he should scratch Chase Utley, Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee off any possible trade list.  Anyone of the other veterans are fair game, in my humble opinion.

In the meantime, all we can do is wait for the hammer to fall…

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Pettibone, Umpires Frustrate Braves in Loss to Phillies

The Atlanta Braves did not think it was very sunny in Philadelphia after losing to the Phillies by a score of 7-3.  Even in blinding sunshine and near 100 degree temperatures, it was a dark day for the Braves.

Rookie pitcher Jonathan Pettibone was outstanding against a heavy-hitting Braves line-up.  Freddie Freeman was so frustrated after striking out at one point that he smashed his bat into the ground, picked it up and then smashed it again.  And B.J. Upton was thrown out of the game after mouthing off to the umpire about calling him out on strikes in the 5th inning.

Pettibone went only 5.1 innings, likely due to the excessive heat.  It was obvious he was getting tired.  But he did manage to leave with only 1 run allowed.

Both the Phillies offense and defense were solid.  Domonic Brown had 2 hits, including his 23rd homer of the year.  Darren Ruf, starting for Ryan Howard who is now on the DL, had a hit, a walk and scored twice.  Carlos Ruiz added 2 hits as well.

The only defensive snafu was when Michael Young, who has been not great at third base lately, nearly ran over Jimmy Rollins going after a pop-up:

And for the most part, the Phillies bullpen held steady.  J.C. Ramirez allowed 2 runs in the 6th; those were his first runs allowed since being called up.  Aside from that, things were mostly quiet from the 6th inning on.

The Phillies took 2 of 3 from the Braves with this win today.  Still, with Howard’s future uncertain and a very young and inexperienced bullpen, this team is going to have to annihilate the Nationals this week to keep GM Ruben Amaro Jr. from breaking up the team.

Here is the Photo Album from today’s game, including shots of Roy Halladay actually throwing pitches before the game!  The Doc may not be done just yet…

Game time Monday night is 7:05pm.  John Lannan will pitch.

Phillies Lose Series to Mets

The Phillies completed an embarrassing weekend series against the Mets today with a 0-8 loss.  They lost 2 of 3 in the series and the only reason they won on Saturday was due to another Kevin Frandsen miracle in the form of a walk off homer after the team blew a 7-1 lead.

In his second start since coming off the DL, John Lannan struggled to get through just 5 innings, allowing 4 runs on 3 walks and 8 hits.  Below is a photo of Lannan pitching and another photo I took today which seems to express how Lannan felt his outing went:

In the top of the 5th inning, the Mets had some extra help against Lannan in the form of creative umpiring.  Ben Revere caught a fly ball, took a few steps with it securely in his glove and as he transferred the ball to his hand, it slipped to the ground.  The runner was allowed to advance to third and was called safe.

In the official MLB rules, a catch is defined as follows: “If the fielder has made the catch and drops the ball while in the act of making a throw following the catch, the ball shall be adjudged to have been caught. In establishing the validity of the catch, the fielder shall hold the ball long enough to prove that he has complete control of the ball and that his release of the ball is voluntary and intentional.  Rule 2.00 (Catch) Comment: A catch is legal if the ball is finally held by any fielder, even though juggled, or held by another fielder before it touches the ground.”

Revere had the ball long enough to be a catch.  Manager Charlie Manuel argued to no avail.  That was the turning point of the game as 3 runs scored right after that call.  Here are a few shots of the event:

Of course, the Phillies offense was no help at all either.  There were many bewildered looks at the plate, swings and misses and various other miscues.  Every mistake seemed inflated as they began to pile up; much like Ryan Howard’s inflated back side as a result of my viewing angle and his standing next to Chase Utley:

See, even in a 0-8 rain-soaked loss, I still managed to have a small bit of fun ;o)

J.C. Ramirez had some fun as well; he made his major league debut and struck out all 3 batters he faced.  Sadly though, the fun ended there.

The team starts a West Coast road trip tomorrow in San Diego.  In the meantime, here is the Photo Album from today’s game, including a Cole Hamels pre-game bullpen session and pitcher warm-ups.

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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

Phillies Beat The Yanks In First Spring Action

The first official Spring Training game for the Phillies ended with a 3-2 win over their World Series foes, the New York Yankees.  Not that spring games mean anything, but it was fun to watch.  mlb_i_rhalladay2_400.jpgRoy Halladay pitched two innings and lived up to the hype.  He did not allow a hit in 2 innings and threw 21 of 24 pitches for strikes.  It did not look like even one of those pitches came near the middle of the plate.  He had amazing movement on the ball, pinpoint control and he painted the corners, making it look effortless.

Kyle Kendrick and new pick-up Jose Contreras impressed as well.  Each threw 2 innings and looked solid.  Kendrick appears to be serious about grabbing the 5th starters’ spot.  Kendrick spent extra time this off-season working out to prepare and during camp, has been following Halladay around like a lost puppy.  The extra effort appears to be paying off.

Another anxiously awaited debut was that of former 2nd baseman, Placido Polanco at third base.  The first batter of the day hit it right to him and Polly handled it well.  Later that same inning however, he made a fantastic scoop but overthrew to first for the first error of spring.  It was basically smooth sailing after that minus a pop-up that the wind took away.   Polanco started his career at third and it is expected that he will progress quickly in his return to the position.

So it was all positives for the Phillies in their 1st official spring game.  Yesterday’s exhibition against Florida State however was a bit more challenging for one new Phillie.  Top prospect Phillipe Aumont who was acquired in the Cliff Lee trade had a memorable outing on the mound, although it won’t be a good memory for the young pitcher. 

Obviously shaken by the pressure to show he was worth the trade, Aumont gave up 5 runs in 2/3 of an inning including 3 walks and a 3-run homer.  Previously touted for his excellent control, that skill went right out the window as nerves got the better of him.  And all that was against a college team…ouch.  This poor kid needs a hug….bad.  The Phillies still won 13-6 so no worries.  Besides, things can only get better from here.  Aumont should bounce back now that he has purged the nervous energy.  I wish him luck!

So the Phillies will play a game every day until their one day off of the month on March 18th.  Tomorrow they face the Blue Jays in Dunedin and Halladay will make his first visit back to his old spring stadium.  Cole Hamels is scheduled to start and we will also see J.C. Ramirez, Ryan Vogelsong and Antonio Bastardo in action as well.  Game time is 1:05pm.

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Photo from ESPN.com

 

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

 

Happy Juice

During the official introduction of Roy Halladay yesterday, GM Ruben Amaro Jr. explained further why he chose to ship Cliff Lee off to Seattle.  He backed off the idea of not being able to sign him past one year and moved on to replenishing the farm system.  Amaro admitted this move was a risk, but one he was willing to take in order to keep the franchise winning for years to come, rather than just putting all their eggs into the 2010 basket.

As for the fans, we are all very excited to see Roy Halladay in a Phillies uniform!  But many wish the ultimate pitching dream of Halladay & Lee could have been a reality.  Here is a synopsis of how it all went down for the Lee fans:

5 Stages of Grief In Losing Cliff Lee:

- Denial:  This cannot be happening!  Lee was the only pitcher to win a game for us in the World Series!

- Anger:   Noooooo!  Ruben Amaro Jr., you stink!

- Bargaining:   Hey Ruben, how about we keep both Halladay AND Lee?  Come on….please?  I’ll be your best friend :O)

- Depression:  I am going to crawl in a hole; wake me in the Spring.

- Acceptance:  Oh, ok.  I guess it was a good business decision.  I still love you Ruben :O)  Thank you for a Happy Halladay!

Amaro drunk.jpgMr. Amaro may be the happiest person on the planet right now; he has wanted Halladay for a very long time and finally got his wish.  During the press conference, Amaro referred to the acquisition of Halladay as “intoxicating.”  Well, that does explain a lot about the trade I suppose.  Clearly, he was drunk on Halladay Juice and made some very creative decisions.  I’ll give him an A+ on getting Halladay.  As for letting Lee go in exchange for the prospects, the jury is out until we see how he handles the hangover. ;o)

Well, it is the Halladay Season, so drink up Mr. Amaro!  Just sober up in time for Spring Training.

By the way, the This Year In Baseball awards are in and some Phillies, plus a few of their fans, won awards.  Ruben Amaro Jr. was voted Best Executive; J.A. Happ, who should have gotten the Rookie of the Year award will have to settle for the TYIB Best Rookie prize; Jayson Werth won Best Unsung Star; and the father-daughter pair who were shown all over TV after Dad caught a ball and his daughter tossed it back, were named the season’s Best Oddity.

Congrats to all!

Amaro photo by Jenn

 

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

 

Halladay Shopping Is Done For The Phillies

The Phillies made it official this afternoon; Cy Young award winning pitcher Roy Halladay is now a Phillie :O)  Some say he is the best pitcher in baseball.  This is a huge pick up for the Phillies and an exciting day for the fans.  Halladay has signed a 3-year extension, keeping him in red pinstripes through 2013 for around 20 million a year after his 1-year Jays contract is fulfilled in 2010.

trading copy.jpg

So the Phillies have swapped one Cy Young winner for another and three prospects for 3 different prospects.  The casualties for the Phillies include Cliff Lee, who went to Seattle plus 3 of our top 4 prospects; pitcher Kyle Drabek, outfielder Michael Taylor and catcher Travis d’Arnaud who all went to the Jays.  In return, the Phillies will get 3 prospects from Seattle to restock the farm system; pitchers Phillipe Aumont, J.C. Ramirez and outfielder Tyson Gillies. 

The Cliff Lee trade is disappointing, but it makes sense from a business perspective as the Phillies were nearing their payroll limit and they knew for sure that Lee would be only a 1-year pitcher, testing the market after 2010.  From a fan perspective, it is sad to see Lee go and one cannot help but wish we could have had both Lee and Halladay even for just the one year.

And to all the yahoo’s out there who want to shout obscenities and declare that Phillies fans do not appreciate Roy Halladay, get over yourselves.  It has nothing to do with appreciating Halladay and everything to do with losing Cliff Lee.  If the Yankees got Halladay and had to ship off CC Sabathia to do so, tell me Yankee fans would not be shouting from the rooftops?  It is the same thing.  And yes, Lee and Sabathiha have comparable stats.

We are very, very happy to have Halladay and excited to see him pitch in a Phillies uniform.  But it does seem sad to lose other good players in the process, especially Lee and the three prospects.  You feel like a kid at Christmas that got exactly what you always wanted, but had to give back all your other presents to do so.

I have personally spoken to Michael Taylor, as an example, and he is not only a great player, but a great person as well.  One cannot help but feel disappointed to see these guys leave.  And I saw Lee pitch his first game with the Phillies in San Francisco; he pitched a complete game and made it look easy.  We are entitled to be upset over losing our best pitcher, as I am sure Jays fans are upset over losing theirs.  Are we getting a better pitcher in return?  Absolutely.  But wouldn’t both be so much nicer?

That being said, Phillies fans are thrilled to finally get the big prize!  Happy Halladay’s to everyone in Philly!  I cannot wait until Spring Training :O)

 

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

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