Results tagged ‘ Pedro Feliz ’

2:00am Heroics Put Phillies One Win Away

The Phillies are 1 win away from advancing to the NLCS against the Dodgers after beating the Rockies last night 5-4.  They hold a 2-1 advantage in the series and also have the chance today to win 2 post-season games on the same day; last night’s game ended at 2:15am this morning and tonight will be a 6:07pm start time.  The Phillies finally got a prime time slot, since everyone else is done with their NLDS series.  Gee thanks, MLB, she says as she holds her eyes open with toothpicks…

This win was a true team effort with contributions up and down the line-up.  Chase Utley hit a solo homer in the 1st inning and the Rockies answered with 2 runs later that inning.  The Phillies took the lead again in the 4th with 3 runs.  It may have been more, but Pedro Feliz hit into a 1-2-3 double play with the bases loaded and no outs.  But Carlos Ruiz picked his teammate up and knocked an RBI single to give the Phillies the lead again. 

The two teams traded runs again in the 6th and 7th innings, but the Phillies took the lead for good in the 9th with some small ball.  Jimmy Rollins led off with a hit and Shane Victorino bunted him over.  Chase Utley hit a dribbler for a single and moved Jimmy to third; Ryan Howard knocked him in with a sac fly.  So the Phillies gave the ball to Brad Lidge who, despite making us all bite our fingernails again, got the save.



P9213509 Lidge.jpgLidge seems to have his confidence back, which is great news.  If the Phillies are going to win, they need him.  The pitching overall on both sides was shaky, but bad umpiring did not help either.  JA Happ got squeezed at the plate for his short 3 innings of work where he allowed 3 runs and was prematurely pinch hit for in the 4th when the potential to add on runs arose.  Happ throws pitches that move a lot in a diagonal pattern across the plate.  The ball passes over the plate and ends up in the catcher’s mitt towards the back corner of the plate.  The ump last night was watching where the ball ended up instead of where it crossed the plate and missed tons of calls.

But the ump did that on both sides and both starters were forced out of the game in under 4 innings.  Blown calls have been the story of this entire NLDS, not just the Phillies and the Rockies.  It even started with the Twins-Tigers 1 game playoff where a batter was clearly hit with a pitch but no one called it.  And it continued last night with the ball-strike calls and even the “dribbler” Utley hit in the ninth.  If you watch the replay, the ball hit Utley in the leg and therefore should have been foul.  Instead, it was a hit.  But both the Phillies and Rockies were victims of bad calls, so I guess in the end it evened out.

It does make you wonder though, how are these umpires continually allowed to affect the outcome of such important games?  Did you write your letters to Bug Selig last night as I suggested?  If so, it was a VERY big pile.  Anyone else out there tired of the bad calls and no accountability here?  Feel free to vent in the comments.

But the Phillies won the game and that is what really matters.  And they did it in the most awful conditions; game time temperature was 35 degrees, which ties for the coldest post-season game on record.  The game also took 4 hours and 6 minutes.  Yikes!  No sleep for me, but at least I am not grouchy ;O)

In other news, Scott Eyre was hurt in the game; he twisted his ankle coming off the mound.  No word yet on his condition, but we hope he is ok!

Cliff Lee gets the ball tonight and hopefully, he can repeat the amazing performance he had in Game 1.  Go Phillies!

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

NLDS Roster Announced


Thumbnail image for 208910.jpgThe Phillies announced their playoff roster today and there were a few surprises.  Here is how it played out (courtesy of Phillies.com):

Catchers (2): Paul Bako and Carlos Ruiz

Infielders (6): Miguel Cairo, Greg Dobbs, Pedro Feliz, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley

Outfielders (5): Ben Francisco, Raul Ibanez, Matt Stairs, Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth

Pitchers (12): left-handers Antonio Bastardo, Scott Eyre, Cole Hamels, J.A. Happ and Cliff Lee and right-handers Joe Blanton, Chad Durbin, Kyle Kendrick, Brad Lidge, Ryan Madson, Pedro Martinez and Brett Myers

Miguel Cairo was the right decision over Eric Bruntlett.  And the rest of the bench players are what I expected.

There was one surprise with the pitchers, however.  Clay Condrey and Tyler Walker were left off the roster in favor of Kyle Kendrick and Antonio Bastardo.  I did say earlier that Bastardo may be picked over Walker, so that is not too shocking considering the lack of lefties in the pen.  But Kendrick over Condrey, I am a bit surprised about.  Kendrick did pitch well in September, but Condrey is more consistent and has a lot more experience.  I think the nagging back injury did him in; the team must not be convinced that Condrey is healthy.

I also predicted that the Game 1 starter would be Cliff Lee, and that is correct.  Cole Hamels will get Game 2 and Game 3 has yet to be decided.  My feeling is that it should be JA Happ as the Phils want to overload the Rockies with lefties.  But all Charlie Manuel would say is that Happ, Joe Blanton and even Pedro Martinez will be “available” in the pen for the first two games.  I suppose then whoever does not get used will start Game 3.

This may also be a strategic move.  This gives less preparation time to the Rockies since they will not know who to prepare for.

So, if you are actually home tomorrow at game time, tune in at 2:37pm for the first pitch.  The game time still disgusts me.  I understand all teams need air time, but how exactly is it that the reigning World Champions do not get one of the prime time slots?  I’ll tell you why…because MLB cares only about the Yankees and the Red Sox.  It has been and probably will always be about these teams, whether deserving or not.  I root for the Yankees too, so it is not personal.  It is a matter of respect.

Not to mention, normal people have jobs, kids have school and 2:37pm does not allow ANY of these people to enjoy the game, unless they call out sick or skip school.   And how about the poor Rockies fans?  The game time for them is 12:37pm! (Mountain time)  That is just wrong.  But hey, if you are a Yankees or Sox fan, I’ll bet you are happier than a pig in mud, right?  Must be nice. 

Well, best of luck to everyone tomorrow (except the Rockies, of course)!  Go Phillies!

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

One Win Away

After sending Phillies fan everywhere into panic mode with some really bad baseball, the Phillies finally got their act together last night. 
P9026431 Feliz.jpgThey beat the Astros 7-4 behind the pitching of rookie JA Happ and a Grand Slam from Pedro Feliz.

Happ won his 12th game of the year, which leads all rookie pitchers.  He had a lot of base runners, but worked out of jams by remaining calm and throwing strikes.  In 5 2/3 innings, Happ allowed 3 earned runs on 9 hits and 1 walk.  An interference error by Paul Bako behind the plate gave the Astros one additional run, which was unearned.  But once again, it was a Happ-Y day for the rookie.

Jamie Moyer pitched 1 1/3 after Happ left the game and did a great job.  But on the last pitch of the inning, he strained a groin muscle and the extent of the injury is still unknown.  Everyone is crossing their fingers that Moyer will recover quickly.

Ryan Madson pitched a 2-inning save and it looks like we have a new closer.  And the offense finally came to life with 11 hits, the biggest of those being the slam by Feliz in the 4th inning.  It was the Phillies 11th Grand Slam of the year.  Jayson Werth also helped out with a 2-run shot in the 5th to break the game open for the Phils.

Add this win to a loss by the Braves and the Phillies need only one more win or one more Braves loss to clinch their 3rd consecutive NL East title.  Bring a camera if you are headed to the game tonight because today may be the day!  Pedro Martinez will pitch and, if he is healthy, it should be a good game.  Go Phillies!

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

 

Strange Brew

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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*

 

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

Phils Spilt Doubleheader With The Fish

The Phillies played back-to-back games in Miami yesterday against the 2nd place Marlins and split the series.  Here is a recap:

Game 1

Joe Blanton pitched 7 scoreless innings while the Phillies offense played some small ball and squeaked out 4 runs off the Marlins ace, Josh Johnson.  P2211686 Cairo.jpgThey blew the game wide open though with a 5-run 8th inning.  Every starting position player had at least one hit and 5 different players collected RBI’s. 

Miguel Cairo got a rare start at 3rd base while Pedro Feliz took a break; Cairo went 2 for 5 with an RBI and a run scored.  Ryan Howard led the team in RBI’s with 3, none of which came off home runs.  He got it done with base hits, sacrifices and some really good base running.  Out of 9 runs scored in the 9-3 win, only 1 came off a homer; Raul Ibanez hit a solo shot in the 8th.

The pen ran into trouble in the bottom of the 8th with rookie Sergio Escalona allowing 3 runs on 2 hits.  Tyler Walker allowed a hit as well, but eventually got the final 2 outs of the inning.  Clay Condrey pitched a hitless 9th inning; it is great to see Condrey back after a long stint on the DL!

Game 2

The Phillies looked a bit sleepy in game two. 

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In fact, the bats took a little nap for 9 innings and they lost the game 0-3.  The only 2 hits in the game came from Chase Utley who hit a single and a double.  I guess they were exhausted after a 9-run game earlier?  Because the Marlins pitcher, Anibal Sanchez is certainly not their best; his 2-7 record and ERA of 4.50 going into the game should be evidence enough.

Jamie Moyer did his job and pitched 7 innings, allowing 3 runs on 9 hits and 1 walk, which is basically what the Phillies expected from him.  But the lack of offense did them in.

So, having split the doubleheader, the Phillies will need to concentrate on winning the final game of the series tonight.  Cole Hamels gets the ball at 7:10pm.

The magic number is now 5!

Cairo photo by Jenn

Bats: http://childprotectionresource.blogspot.com/

 

 

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

 

Phillies Take 2 of 3 From The Braves

While not without drama, the Phillies did manage to take 2 games in this 3-game series from the Atlanta Braves, dampening their playoff hopes.  P9087999 Lee.jpgRain also dampened the afternoon with a 2-hour delay taking Cliff Lee out of the game after only 4 innings of work.  Lee was on pace to pitch another great game, but on this day, it would be up to the bullpen.

The first inning however, did not bode well for the Phils; Shane Victorino got tossed out of the game for arguing with an umpire after he was tossed out stealing second.  Victorino slammed his helmet to the ground and then said a few choice words to the ump.  Shane needs to watch himself; with his second ejection this year, he now has a reputation with the umps of being a hot-head.

In the bottom of the first inning, Jimmy Rollins dropped the ball trying to tag out Matt Diaz who was caught between bases and a run scored on the play.  The run would have scored anyway, but the ejection followed by the missed ball made things look grim.

Ben Francisco took over for Victorino and hit an RBI double in the third to tie the game and give the Phillies a lift.  In the 4th, a double by Raul Ibanez and a single by Pedro Feliz put two more runs on the board.  The rain came and a 2-hour delay ensued.

After the delay, Chase Utley nailed an RBI triple to make the score 4-1 and the bullpen took over.  Tyler Walker pitched 2 innings with Sergio Escalona and Clay Condrey sharing the 7th.  Ryan Madson returned to his 8th inning role and took the 4-1 lead into the 9th.  Brad Lidge still looks like crap, but with a 3-run lead, manager Charlie Manuel gave him the ball anyway.  As expected, Lidge got into trouble with 2 outs and gave up a run.  He finally struck out the last batter and all Phillies fans breathed a collective sigh of relief.

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The 9th inning drama needs to stop!  Seriously.  Ok, we won and I am happy, of course.  But are we really going to have to go through this EVERY game?  And what if the Phillies only have a 1-run lead?  You can NOT trust a 1-run lead to Lidge anymore.  Luckily, the Phillies have a nice 8-game pad in the division to figure this out, but with 3 games against the Marlins up next, they had better think quick!

Tomorrow is an off day and then a double-header on Tuesday with the Fish!  The magic number is now 6!

Photography Phun

A few weeks ago, I attended a Photo Workshop at an Iron Pigs game (Phillies AAA club).  I experimented with different lenses and camera settings in a very low-light environment.  It was great fun and our group had access to the photo pit before the game right next to the Pigs dugout.  I got some great close-up shots of the players!  Here is the full Photo Album from the game; you will notice a lot of different light environments…this is a result of changing lenses, camera settings and just plain fooling around :O)  Some of them are really awesome, and some are just a tad off, but I promise you, all of them were FUN!  We even got the Mets AAA team to pose for us:


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Hope you enjoy the pictures!

Photos by Jenn

 

 

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

 

Bullpen Blows 4 Run Lead


Thumbnail image for 0912 Moyer.jpgThis game got off to an ominous start when Jamie Moyer allowed 4 runs before he even recorded an out in the 1st inning.  Things were not looking good.  But the Phillies offense battled back and by the 6th inning, they had an 8-4 lead over the Mets.  Chase Utley, Pedro Feliz and Raul Ibanez all homered to give the team a lift.

And yet, despite 12 hits, including the 3 homers, 3 doubles and a triple (Rollins), the bullpen blew the game for the Phillies.  Even Moyer battled back after a terrible start and wound up with 5 runs allowed over 7 innings.  It appeared as if the planets would align and the Phillies would overcome the bad start.  But when Ryan Howard struck out with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 8th, fans began to wonder if that would come back to haunt them.


091209.jpgLet the haunting begin…the bad start came full circle and turned into a bad ending as well.  Brett Myers and Chan Ho Park combined in the 8th inning to give the Mets 3 more runs, making the score 9-8.  With a precarious 1 run lead, Ryan Madson took the mound in the 9th and gave up a two run homer to David Wright with 2 outs in the inning, his second homer plus 6 RBI’s on the night.  Madson, in for the struggling Brad Lidge, has now blown his 6th save of the season.  Madson and Lidge together have 16 blow saves on the year.

It is official – this team has NO closer.  If the Phillies cannot close out games, they have no shot at success in the post-season, if they even get that far.  Unless a miracle occurs and Lidge can figure out what is ailing him, I hate to be the bearer of bad news but, we are so totally screwed.  I had a few other choice words in mind to express that feeling, but I will refrain for now.  Feel free to add your own “color” to that sentence.


gloves 091209.jpgFrustration
is another good word – frustration, disappointment and downright exasperation.  So, just to make myself feel better, here is a small piece of comic relief.  At batting practice today, I watched a Mets player using what appears to be a child’s glove to shag balls.  It is tiny and quite colorful.  Check out the comparison between a real glove and the baby-glove:

I have had my fun for the day then :O)  The Phillies have a double-header tomorrow night with Kyle Kendrick pitching the 1:05pm game and Pedro Martinez at 8:05pm.  I will be at the night game praying for a win!  For now, here is the Photo Album from today’s game.

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

A New Closer?

Don’t get too excited Phillies fans; although Ryan Madson did close out the 6-5 win over the Nationals last night, it remains to be seen whether this is a permanent move or not.  P9087835 Madson.jpgThe unexpected, season-long decline of Brad Lidge has forced manager Charlie Manuel to sit him down.  Is Lidge out for the season?  Unlikely.  Manuel is famous for his loyalty and will not give up on Lidge unless he has no other choice.  But with 10 blown saves, the worst closer in baseball may be teetering on the brink of losing his job for the rest of 2009.

 

What is more likely to happen is Madson or Brett Myers will close when the game is close and Lidge will be given a few more shots if there is a 3-run lead to play with.  But in a close game last night, it was a no-brainer to bring in Madson.  He has pitched well lately and saved Lidge from sure disaster the night before, escaping a 1-out bases loaded situation in the 9th.  Last night, Madson saved the game giving up one hit and striking out one batter.

 

Cliff Lee got the win, although for the 3rd start in a row, he did not look too solid.  Lee gave up 10 hits and 4 earned runs over 7 innings, although he did not issue any walks.  Still, Lee kept the Phillies in the game and allowed the offense to battle for him.

 

For the second night in a row and 10th time this year, the Phillies hit back-to-back home runs.  This time it was Jayson Werth and Pedro Feliz doing the honors in the 8th inning to solidify a lead for the Phils.  Four players had at least 2 hits in the game, including Werth, Feliz, Shane Victorino and Raul Ibanez.  Even Lee helped out with the bat getting his 7th hit as a Phillie and his first career RBI.  That RBI may have been the difference maker in the game.

 

The Phillies will try to sweep the Nationals tonight at 7:05pm.  Joe Blanton will face former Met, Livan Hernandez.  Best of luck to them!

 

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

Series Win Gives Phillies 8 Game Lead

With a 3-2 victory over the Braves last night to win the series 2 game to 1, the Phillies will have an 8-game lead in the NL East over both the Braves and the Marlins going into September.  Joe Blanton pitched another beautiful game and got through 7 innings of one run ball; the only run came off a solo homer from Martin Prado in the first inning.  Blanton looked a bit shaky through those first few innings, but settled in well and only gave up 3 hits.

 

And for the 2nd night in a row, Chase Utley went yard; his solo shot to right field in the 4th was the only run for the Phillies until Carlos Ruiz stepped up in the 7th.  In honor of the Ruiz backpack night, a giveaway for kids 14 and under, Ruiz smacked a double to left to score Raul Ibanez and Pedro Feliz.  Ruiz went 3 for 3 on the night; it was his 5th 3-hit game of the year.  Maybe the Phillies should give away a Ruiz bobble head next?


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In the not-so-great offensive category, the Phillies are still struggling with runners in scoring position.  They left 14 men on base and again, had the bases loaded with no outs and failed to score.  Blanton hit a line-drive to first base and Ruiz was double off after the catch.  Jimmy Rollins then hit a weak grounder to end the inning.  The offensive outage is concerning, but thanks to great pitching, they came out on top.

 

Defense was a big part of the win as well.  Ryan Madson, who is entering Brad Lidge-bad territory, got into a huge jam in the 8th inning again.  He hit the first batter he faced and then gave up back-to-back singles which scored a run for the Braves.  Without recording an out, he was removed from the game and Scott Eyre took over. 

 

Brain McCann then hit a sharp grounder to Utley, who fielded it perfectly and flipped to Rollins who threw to Feliz at third; Feliz tagged Chipper Jones for the unusual 4-6-5 double play.  Having eliminated the lead runner, Eyre saved the Phillies from disaster and gave Lidge a 3-2 lead to work with.  Amazingly, Lidge nailed down the save with relative ease; it was his second save in a row.  Whew!


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By the way, did anyone see the actor, Paul Rudd (movies: “I Love You, Man”; “Anchorman”; “Knocked Up”), sitting in the 10th row behind home plate last night? He was just a few sections over from me so I took a few photos.  The woman next to him (right side, dark brown hair) is none other than Jen Utley, Chase’s wife.


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A very welcome off-day is upon us as the Phillies offense needs to rest and charge up for the September charge.  Watch for September call-up’s which may include pitchers Kyle Kendrick, Jack Taschner and Rodrigo Lopez; infielders Mike Cervenak and Andy Tracy; outfielders John Mayberry Jr. and Jason Ellison; and we will likely see a catcher added – maybe Paul Hoover.  Those are my guesses anyway.

 

A lot of moves will be made as the Phillies are also anticipating the return of Brett Myers, JC Romero and Clay Condrey to the bullpen plus Greg Dobbs.  All four have been on the DL and are very close to coming back.

 

And finally, here is the complete Photo Album from last night’s Phillies – Braves game.  Tomorrow, the San Francisco Giants come to town for 3 games and some serious pitching battles will ensue.  You may remember the Phillies were stomped in San Fran back in July, losing 3 out of 4 games.  The Giants are tied for a wildcard spot right now so this will be a very tough match match-up.  Cole Hamels starts it off tomorrow at 7:05pm.

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

 

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