Results tagged ‘ JA Happ ’

Cliff Lee Wins First Game After His Return To Philly

When the Phillies announced that they re-signed Cliff Lee this past December, it was hard to believe.  From the shocking trade after the 2009 season, to Lee’s return and now, his first start back in a Phils uniform, it has been quite an emotional roller coaster ride.

But when Lee took the mound tonight against the Astros, the reality truly set in.  Fans jumped to their feet and roared before Lee even threw a pitch.  The excitement was palpable.  Like a gift from heaven, Cliff Lee is home again.

 

Lee in heaven3.jpg

As expected, Lee dominated the Astros line-up for most of the game.  The only issue he ran into was his namesake, Carlos Lee who smashed a two-run homer.  Lee wound up going seven innings, allowing three runs on four hits while striking out 11 batter.

The only remaining question for the Phillies was could they muster any offense.  The answer is yes.  After the amazing Opening Day ninth inning comeback rally on Friday, the Phils offense picked up today where they left off yesterday.

The Phillies got off to a quick start with two runs in the first inning.  Between the fourth and fifth innings, they scored five more runs.  The highlights were a Raul Ibanez double, a two-run Shane Victorino bloop single and a Ben Francisco double, just to name a few.

The real encouraging factor was not just the runs, but the way they scored the runs.  It was a combination of good base running, patience at the plate, small ball and timely hitting.  This is the Phillies offense everyone has been waiting to see.

Of course, we all loved the home run days and there will still be some of those.  But in the past, the Phillies offense really seemed to rely on the big hits with little to no focus on manufacturing runs.  With Chase Utley hurt and Jayson Werth gone, the big concern going into 2011 was the lack of power on a team that has issues playing small ball.

While we have only seen two games so far, it does look like the offense has finally figured out how to go one base at a time to score runs.  With the incredible pitching they have, if the offense can keep up this pace and be consistent, this will be a very scary team.

Of course, where there is good news, sometime bad news follows.  After a collision in center field with Francisco, Victorino left the game early.  Reports say that he has soreness in his left calf.  While his previous injury was to the left calf, there is still concern.  Hopefully, pulling him was just a precaution.  There is no word yet on how serious it may be.

The Phillies went on to win the game by a score of 9-4.  On Sunday, they will go for the series sweep with Roy Oswalt on the mound against his former team.  Former Phillie J.A. Happ was scheduled to pitch for the Astros but has been scratched due to an oblique issue.  Bud Norris will pitch instead.  Game time is 1:35pm and I will return with photos.

 

Lee photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the MTR Media network*

 

Dis-ASTROS-ous Series Ends In A Sweep


1-Electric-Bill.jpgDid the Phillies forget to pay their electric bill this month?  Because they are suffering from a serious and prolonged power outage.  When sluggers Ryan Howard and Chase Utley finally came off the DL in mid-late August, everyone was relieved to finally see the Phillies line-up back in order.  But the relief was short lived as the team has been on a downward spiral ever since. 

And now, the Phillies have lost ground in the NL East race, falling 3 games behind the Braves and missing key opportunities to catch up.  This 4-game sweep at the hands of the Astros may come back to haunt them in September.

Howard has only 3 hits in his last 10 games and has struck out 20 times.  In 16 at-bats for the Astros series, Howard got only 1 hit.  Utley has had only 7 hits in his last 34 at-bats since coming off the DL.  Other key players during the Astros 4-game series did not hit either; Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino and Placido Polanco had just 3 hits each.  They have consistently failed to hit with runners in scoring position too, with the worst offender being Jayson Werth.

So was the firing of hitting coach Milt Thompson in July really necessary?  Apparently not, because they are still not hitting.  Right now, the Phillies batters could not hit the side of a barn. 
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They have lost their fire and their intensity.  That was no more evident than today in the 5th inning when Werth tried to tag and score on a shallow fly to right.  Not only did Werth not even bother to slide, he never even touched the plate.  Werth should have slid hard and tried to take out the catcher to get that run.  Instead, he gave up and basically accepted defeat.

Kyle Kendrick looked half asleep on the mound too.  Ever since JA Happ was shipped to the Astros, Kendrick had relaxed more and more each start, to the point where he is just not present on the mound.  Maybe he figures there is no one left to take his job so why bother kicking it up a notch?  Kendrick has allowed 15 runs in his last 4 starts, with 4 of those runs coming in 6 innings tonight.

However, the real offenders this series were the Phillies hitters who got absolutely nothing done.  Except maybe for getting picked off on the base paths multiple times, failing to gets bunts down and not bothering to slide in order to score.  The way they have played is disgraceful.

If the Phillies take this sort of attitude and performance into San Diego tomorrow, they are going to be crushed.  They have 3 games with the Padres, 3 with the Dodgers and then a make-up in Denver against the now hot Rockies.  Cross your fingers.  Game time tomorrow is 10:05pm.

 

Player photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Phillies Offense Fails Again

JA Happ returned to Philadelphia today in a different uniform.  Pitching for the Astros against his former team for the first time, Happ showed Phillies brass why they should have kept him around.  Going pitch for pitch with Roy Halladay, Happ allowed only 2 runs in 6 1/3 innings.  Halladay went 7 with 3 runs given up.  He may have gone further, but Halladay was pulled for a pinch-hitter with runners on base in the 7th.



Thumbnail image for P8249196N Werth.jpgHaving Happ on the mound did not help the struggling Phillies offense emerge from their current funk.  Jayson Werth hit a solo homer in the 5th, but with runners in scoring position in the 6th, he grounded out.  Werth has hit only .159 with RISP all year; with 2 outs and RISP, the stat drops to .107.  By a wide margin, Werth is the worst situational hitter on the team.

The second run the Phillies scored was helped along by Halladay leading off the 6th with a base hit.  Placido Polanco later doubled to score him.  So of the 5 hits Happ allowed, one was from the opposing pitcher.  Base running errors have not helped the Phillies this week either.  Ben Francisco was picked off leaning too far off 3rd base during a potential rally in the 6th.  That was the 10th runner picked off this year.

Earlier in the series, Werth got picked off at second after peering into the Astros dugout; former teammate Brett Myers stuck his tongue out at him and in an attempt not to laugh out loud, Werth lowered his head and was thrown out.  A lack of concentration was bad enough, but playing around with the opposing team while on the base path?  Wow.  That is bad.

This entire Astros series has been a microcosm of Werth’s lack of focus.  Players getting thrown out on the base path, no discipline at the plate and a serious lack of urgency have now led to a huge series loss.  While the Braves have been losing as well, the Phillies have simply thrown away their opportunity to gain ground in the NL East race.

Disagreements with the umpires in every game of this series so far have added to the frustration.  Today, the home plate umpire called Shane Victorino back to the plate after being hit by a pitch; the ump claimed Victorino leaned into it.  Replay shows he leaded down and away.  But Victorino got on base anyway with a hit.

Despite the controversial umpiring, it has not been the officiating that lost these 3 games; it has been the Phillies invisible offense.  Today’s 3-2 loss was evidence enough.  The final game with the Astros is tomorrow afternoon at 1:05pm.

 

Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Howard Ejected, Oswalt In Left For 16-Inning Loss

In a strange turn of events last night, the Phillies lost a 4-2 game to the Astros in 16 innings that took 5 hours and 20 minutes to play.  The game started with an outstanding effort, again, by Cole Hamels who allowed just 2 runs.  But as has been the case all year, Hamels got no help.


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The Phillies offense scored only 1 run off Bud Norris who entered the game with a 5.23 ERA.  The one run was a Raul Ibanez double that scored Jayson Werth.  Not only are they not hitting, the Phils are striking out at a record pace lately.  Adding to the problem, Jimmy Rollins even got thrown out trying to steal 3rd base.  Most of the few hits they got came with 2 outs and the next batter could not capitalize.

0824 offense.jpg 

 

Rollins tried to redeem himself with a game-tying homer in the 9th that sent the game into extra innings.  But as in the first 9, the Phillies still did not hit.  Both teams’ bullpens got a workout though and both performed well.  15 pitchers were used in total for both teams.

 

There were some nice defensive plays in the game; most notably two double plays, one of which Rollins started from the ground to toss to Chase Utley:

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The real drama occurred when in the 14th inning, umpire Scott Barry, acted like a child, which led to the ejection of Ryan Howard from the game.  Howard put his hands on his hips in disgust as a check swing was called a strike.  Barry in response mimicked Howard’s action by placing his hands on his hips and gawking childishly at Howard.  Howard told the home plate ump he was mad at himself, not at Barry.  The kindergarten move by Barry was unprofessional, uncalled for and outright disgusting.  

As a result, the already annoyed Howard tossed his bat after being called out on another check swing.  He was mad, and with good reason.  Replay shows the bat never crossed the plate and Howard should not have been called out.  But Barry, still in 3-year old mode, took offense to the bat toss and ejected him.  But this should have been an equipment fine, not an ejection.  However, the infantile Barry made up his own rules.  Check out the VIDEO.  Here are a few game shots of Howard:

0824 Howard.jpgBarry, 31, is a minor league call-up who just started his 4th year of AAA ball umpiring.  This is the same ump who tossed Charlie Manuel from the game on Monday night after another BS call.  And on August 18th, the same umpire ejected the National’s Ryan Zimmerman for tossing his bat and helmet after striking out.  Zimmerman said nothing but Barry ejected him anyway for the first ejection of his career.  Again, this should have been an equipment fine, not an ejection.

This minor leaguer is a disgrace to all umpires and he should be fired for his childish actions.  Barry is the kind of ump who gives all the good ones a bad rap.  But as usual, NO umpires are EVER held accountable for their actions.  It is a real shame and a serious blemish on the game of baseball.

All that drama led to the Phillies not having ANY players left.  As a result, starting pitcher Roy Oswalt was put in to play left field; it was the first time since Bill Wilson on Aug. 6, 1971 that any pitcher had been made to play another position.  Raul Ibanez, having some experience at first base, was moved to take Howard’s place.

And of course, the first batter of the 15th inning hit the ball right to Oswalt who snagged the fly ball easily and had a nice giggle over it.  Ibanez did a descent job at first, considering he has not played there in years.  He did drop a ball in the 16th, but no one can really blame Ibanez for the loss.  Same goes for relief pitcher David Herndon who gave up 2 runs that inning.  He got all ground balls, they were just hit in odd places.

I was at the game for the first 9 innings but having to get up early for work today, I did not stay for extras.  I listened on the radio in the car and then saw the last 3 innings on TV at home.  Here is the full Photo Album from the first 9 innings.

 

As for tonight, the Phillies had better find their bats if they are going to avoid losing this 4-game series to the Astros.  Roy Halladay will pitch against former Phillie JA Happ who will be in another uniform in Philly for the first time.  Game time is 7:05pm.

 

Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

Ex-Phillies Beat Current Phillies

The Houston Astros, otherwise known as the Phillies-B team, are in town.  The former Phils include Brett Myers, JA Happ, Michael Bourn, Nelson Figueroa, Jason Michael, Ed Wade (former GM) and Brad Mills (former Bench Coach, now Astros manager). 

Myers started the game for the Astros with a huge chip on his shoulder since the Phillies dismissed him after last season.  Not resigning Myers turned out to be a mistake as he has found his groove and is pitching very well for the Astros.  Myers had an 8-7 record with a 3.11 ERA coming into tonight’s game.

The Phillies tried to chip away at Myers who, in the 2nd, struck out Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and Raul Ibanez all in a row.  Plowing through the meat of the line-up, he finally allowed a solo homer to Carlos Ruiz in the 3rd and another run on a Chase Utley single.Myers Blanton.jpg

 

On the other side, Joe Blanton was having a good game as well.  Although Blanton is still having issues getting through the 1st inning of nearly every ballgame he pitches in.  Tonight, he escaped with only 1 run allowed in the 1st thanks to some timely defense which bailed him out of big trouble.  Utley threw a runner out at home and Werth caught a tough fly ball that was sailing away from him.

But after the rocky 1st, Blanton was solid.  He ended up going 7 innings, another rarity for his this year.  In 21 games this year, Blanton has gone 7 innings or more only 8 times, including tonight.  6 hits, 1 run and 9 strike-outs later, Blanton left with a 2-1 lead.

But that lead was put in jeopardy when Ryan Madson came in for the 8th and drama ensued.  Michaels singled and then Bourn bunted for what looked like an out.  Howard tagged him and Bourn seemed to have run out of the baseline but the umpire ruled that Howard missed the tag and Bourn did not go out of the base line until after the tag attempt.  Both Utley and manager Charlie Manuel argued the call heatedly, but to no avail.  Manuel was tossed from the game.

And that play did wind up costing the Phillies the lead.  Madson struck out Hunter Pence but then allowed a 2-run single to Carlos Lee to give the Astros a 3-2 lead.  The Phillies then had to play from behind going into the bottom of the 8th.

With the lead gone, Werth was probably having very bad flashbacks to the 6th inning when he fell asleep at 2nd base.  Myers was intentionally walking Ruiz to get to Wilson Valdez, who had a huge hit the last time a pitcher did that.  But Valdez did not get a shot as Werth hung his head and was quickly thrown out wandering like a zombie off 2nd base.  It was a huge opportunity lost.

Fast forward to the 9th and Brad Lidge kept the score steady; the Phils had one last chance to make something happen.  Well, nothing happened, except the Phillies lost the game.  No scoring in the 9th and the 3-2 score held up.

I will be going to Game 2 of this series tomorrow night to collect the Carlos Ruiz bobblehead doll which will be given away.  My seat location sucks, but I hope to get a few photos to post on Wednesday.  Game time is 7:05pm and Cole Hamels will pitch for the Phillies.

 

Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Oswalt Swats The Nats

Before the final game of the Nationals series today, umpire and Philly native Jerry Crawford was honored for his 33 years of MLB service.  Today was to be his last Phillies game as he will retire at the end of the year.  Crawford was given a standing ovation and a present from the Phanatic; a baby Phanatic doll:

0822 Crawford.jpg

Once the game began, Roy Oswalt was in control.  Though he had a rather high pitch count and led off several innings with runners, Oswalt got the job done when he needed to.  He was also very effective at the plate with two hits and in his third at-bat, almost hit a home run.  The ball went all the way to the warning track in deep center before a Nat tracked it down.  A little bit to the left and it would have gone out.

0822 Oswalt.jpg

Oswalt gave up 5 hits and a walk in 7 innings without allowing a run.  His day was cut short when the skies opened up and dumped buckets of rain onto the field.  The 1 hour, 44 minute delay sent many fans home early.

But to that point, the Phillies offense started to hit again.  Jimmy Rollins double to lead off the game and a sac fly from Placido Polanco scored him.  Later in the 3rd, Oswalt scored after one of his hits and a Polanco single.  The 6th inning was interesting as well.  With 2 men on and 2 outs, the Nats decided to intentionally walk Carlos Ruiz to get to Wilson Valdez.  With the bases then loaded, Valdez made them pay with a 2-run single.

There were a lot of good play both on offense and defense:

0822 good plays.jpg

And then there were some not so great plays, like a Ruiz throwing error to second.  And some weird plays too; if you look at the top row of photos below, you will see Ryan Zimmerman checking out Valdez’s leg; Nats shortstop Ian Desmond, who caught a ground ball which got stuck in the netting of his glove, allowing another hit from Oswalt; and finally, Adam Kennedy puts his hand in a place that Rollins probably did not appreciate:

0822 Oops.jpg

With a 4-0 lead coming out of the rain delay, Rollins got another hit and Raul Ibanez cranked a 2-run homer to give the Phils a 6-0 win and a 2 game to 1 win in the series.  Ibanez, Polanco and Valdez each had 2-RBI on the day.  Valdez played in place of Chase Utley who was given a day off to rest.

And now the real fun begins; the Astros are coming to town for a 4-games series.  It will be like the Phillies vs. all the guys the Phillies no longer wanted.  Both Brett Myers and JA Happ will pitch in the series, plus we will see more old teammates like Michael Bourn, Nelson Figueroa and Jason Michaels.  Myers will pitch tomorrow against Joe Blanton at 7:05pm.

Here is the full Photo Album from the game.  If it is not working, try again later.  TypePad is having issues with photo albums right now.

 

Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Big Man Down: Howard To The DL


Phillies titanic.jpgThe Phillies 2010 season is beginning to resemble the sinking of the Titanic.  Ryan Howard was placed on the DL today with a left ankle sprain.  So it is official; every single infield starter for the Phils has been on the DL this year.  The only two team starters who have escaped a DL trip so far are Jayson Werth and Raul Ibanez.  That makes player #15 on the DL this year.  Take a look:

1B

Ryan Howard

DL

8/3 – now

Starter

CF

Shane Victorino

DL

7/28 – now

Starter

P

Jamie Moyer

DL

7/21 – now

Starter

2B

Chase Utley

DL

6/29 – now

Starter

3B

Placido Polanco

DL

6/26 – 7/17

Starter

C

Carlos Ruiz

DL

6/22 – 7/10

Starter

P

Chad Durbin

DL

6/2 – 7/15

Relief pitcher

P

Antonio Bastardo

DL

6/17 – 7/15 to AAA

Relief pitcher

C

Brian Schneider

DL

5/9-5/24

Back-up

P

Ryan Madson

DL

4/29 – 7/8

Relief pitcher

P

JA Happ

DL

4/16 – 7/6 to AAA

Starter

SS

Jimmy Rollins

DL

4/13-4/17, 5/22-6/22

Starter

P

Joe Blanton

DL

3/26-5/3

Starter

P 

Brad Lidge

DL

3/26-4/30, 5/10-5/31

Closer

P

JC Romero

DL

3/26-4/22

Relief pitcher

 

Is this a sign that 2010 is just not the Phillies year?  I hope not.  Filling in at first base likely will be Ross Gload and maybe Cody Ransom.  John Mayberry Jr. was called up to fill the roster spot and will be used off the bench.

Howard and Chase Utley are the Phillies biggest producers; having them both out of the line-up is going to make an already struggling offense even less effective.  Not to mention, the Phillies bullpen is still suspect.  Manager Charlie Manuel has no idea what to expect from the pen from day to day.  And with fewer runs being scored, odds are good that the pen is going to decide the outcome of a lot of games.  This is not good news.

If you are looking for some good news, Roy Halladay is pitching tonight in Miami.  Even better news; the last time this match-up occurred, Halladay threw a Perfect Game.  The Marlins may be more prepared this time out, but anytime Halladay pitches, you have to like this team’s chances.

Oswalt’s Debut Is Disappointing

Roy Oswalt’s debut tonight in a Phillies uniform was a bit of a buzz kill.  The last place Nationals smacked him around, scoring 5 runs in the first 5 innings. 
disappointment Phillies.jpg
By the end of 6, Oswalt had given up 7 hits, 2 walks and hit 2 batters which accounted for 4 earned runs and 1 unearned. 

On the other side, Nats pitcher Craig Stammen came into tonight’s game with a 5.50 ERA and only 2 wins in 19 starts.  When he was done with the Phillies, Stammen looked like a Cy Young winner.  The stuttering Phils offense managed only 5 hits; 2 of those were from Raul Ibanez and another two, including a solo homer, were from Jayson Werth.  Rookie Domonic Brown had the 5th hit for the team in only his 2nd start in the big leagues.

The defense was a bit shaky as well.  Carlos Ruiz did something I personally have never seen before.  In the 3rd inning with 2 men on base, Adam Kennedy squared to bunt and Greg Dobbs at third base charged to field the bunt, as he was supposed to.  Ruiz got the ball instead; he then had a brain cramp and threw the bunted ball to third base even though NO ONE was there to catch it.  Yes, Ruiz threw the ball to nobody.  And then a run scored.  Wow.

Things continued to go downhill after Oswalt left the game.  Chad Durbin pitched the 7th and gave up 3 runs on 3 hits and 2 walks.  Down 8 to 1, the Phillies offense continued to do nothing.  Brown got one more hit in the 9th inning, giving the Phillies 6 hits total from 3 players.  And that was all the offense.  Phillies lose, 8-1.

As for Oswalt, I suppose everyone is entitled to a bad day.  It was just one start.  We’ll see how it goes next time.  By the way, in case anyone is interested, JA Happ made his first start for the Astros tonight; he gave up some walks, but only 2 hits and NO runs in 6 innings.

Joe Blanton will pitch in DC tomorrow; game time is 7:05pm.

 

Photo by http://www.motifake.com/

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

 

Home Stand Sweep


Broom.jpgWhile the big news of the day was the trade of Roy Oswalt to the Phillies, there was still a game to be played amidst all the hoopla.  And tonight, the Phillies were looking for a 7-game home stand sweep. 

Kyle Kendrick started against the D-Backs and did very well through 6 1/3 innings, allowing only one run.  Kendrick did walk one batter in each of the first 3 innings, but settled in after that.  With JA Happ gone in the trade today, the rotation spot belongs to Kendrick and he will need to keep up the solid pitching.

The Phillies offense, which has been on fire this entire home stand, finally sputtered a bit tonight.  Carlos Ruiz hit an RBI double in the 5th to score Cody Ransom.  The next inning, Raul Ibanez hit a solo homer to give the Phillies a 2-1 lead.  But the offense ended there.  They did have 9 hits off Joe Saunders, but could not score.  Saunders had a very bad year with the Angels and was just traded to the D-Backs.  He looked ripe for the picking, but the Phillies let him off the hook.

Chad Durbin finished pitching the 7th and Ryan Madson had a very good 8th inning.  But manager Charlie Manuel left Madson in for the 9th.  One can only assume this is because his confidence in Brad Lidge with a slim 1-run lead is just not there.  And who could blame him.  But Madson has not pitched more than an inning since coming off the DL and he quickly got into trouble, giving up a lead-off double to start the 9th.

JC Romero took over and allowed a single; a ground out then scored the runner from third, which was charged to Madson. With the game then tied, the drama continued.  After an intentional walk and an unintentional walk, the bases were loaded for Romero.  Gerardo Para stepped to the plate and grounded into his second double play of the night.  Para was so upset, he slammed his helmet to the ground and was ejected by the first base umpire, Adrian Johnson.

The bad luck for Para seemed like good luck for the Phillies who entered the bottom of the 9th with a chance to win the game.  But Jayson Werth, Ransom and Ruiz went down in order and the game headed into extra innings.  In the 10th, Lidge was “Light’s Out” finally, sending the D-Backs down in order.  So if they had put him in for the 9th, this game may have been over already.  Go figure.  But you just don’t know what you are going to get out of Lidge these days.

The Phillies loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning with 2 outs.  Ryan Howard, who was 0 for 4 on the night to that point, had a chance to redeem himself.  But in the past few games, Howard has started to look very, very confused at the plate.  And that translated into a strike out in the 10th to end the inning.  During this home stand, Howard is hitting only .185 including the 0 for 5 tonight.

But more bottom of the order heroics were on the way.  Ransom, Ruiz and Wilson Valdez, the 6, 7 and 8-hole hitters accounted for 7 of the Phillies 12 hits tonight.  So it was only fitting that in the 11th, the same three guys would finally win the game for their team.  Ransom walked, Ruiz singled and Valdez knocked in the winning run with a liner to centerfield.  The final score was 3-2 which completed a 7-game home stand sweep.

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By the way, the Braves lost tonight so the Phillies picked up one more game in the standings.  They are now 2.5 games out of first place in the NL East.

Tomorrow there will more high drama surrounding the Phillies as Roy Oswalt takes the mound in pinstripes for the first time.  He will face the Nationals in DC; game time is 7:05pm.  That game marks the first in a 6-game, 7 day road trip; 3 with the Nats and 3 with the Marlins in Miami after the off day on Monday.

 

Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography

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

 

Roy Oswalt Deal Is Done

The deal is done.  The Phillies sent 2009 runner up for Rookie of the Year, pitcher JA Happ, minor league outfielder Anthony Gose, and short stop Jonathan Villar to Houston in exchange for Roy Oswalt and a yet-to-be-determined amount of cash.  It may be around $11 million.

As I said earlier, I think Happ was too high a price to pay for Oswalt.  Not to mention the depletion of the farm system that Ruben Amaro Jr. used as an excuse to send Cliff Lee packing.  If he was going to rob the farm, why did he not just keep Lee?  Frustrating.

How the trade pans out remains to be seen.  Of course, Oswalt is a great pitcher.  Just hope he stays healthy.  He will pitch tomorrow in DC against the Nationals.  Roy Halladay also made his debut for the Phillies against the Nats in DC.  Coincidence or fate?  If he pitches anything like Halladay, that would be great.

I still feel bad for Happ who I think got a raw deal here with all the Phillies have put him through the last several years.  And who pitches better in the 2nd half will be interesting to see.  Amaro’s legacy is now riding on the combined trades of Halladay, Oswalt and Lee, plus the severely weakened farm system.  Only time will tell how it all pans out.

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