Results tagged ‘ Team Puerto Rico ’

Phillies and Mets Unite!

Ok, well not really.  But Phillies Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino did participate with David Wright of the Mets yesterday to advance Team USA to the semi-final round of the World Baseball Classic.  In fact, all three Phillies that were still involved with the Classic had a hand in the victory along with Wright.  JC Romero, playing for Team Puerto Rico, did not exactly get the outcome he wished for, but he did play a role in this very exciting game.

By the bottom of the 9th inning, Team USA was losing by a score of 5-3 to Puerto Rico.  Enter, Shane Victorino; Victorino smacked a single down the 1st base line off his own Phillies teammate, Romero, to start the comeback.  Victorino played a huge part in the entire game, going 3 for 4 with an RBI. Next up, Brian Roberts singled; Victorino then tagged on a Jeter long fly ball to move to 3rd base.  Enter Rollins, who was issued his 2nd walk of the night to load the bases.  Romero was lifted from the game, shaking his head as he walked off the mound, having given up a hit and a walk to his own Phillies teammates.

Fernando Cabrera came in to relieve Romero, but then proceeded to walk a run in (Victorino), making the score 5-4.  Wright then took over, whacking a 2 run walk-off single, on which Rollins and Roberts scored.  Game over – Team USA wins, 5-6.  See video of the final hit and celebration HERE.

But the most fascinating part of the win for me was seeing Wright, Rollins, Victorino, and even Mike Schmidt, not only get the job done together, but then watching them celebrate together afterwards.  As heated as the Phillies – Mets rivalry has become over the past several years, you never would have known it watching these NL East opponents working together to attain a common goal.  Here is a still shot from the video of the last hit and the celebration:Team USA.jpg

Makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, doesn’t it?  Ok, well, perhaps that is going a bit far… ;o)

Team USA will travel to the west coast after tonight’s game against Team Venezuela, which will determine the top seed.  Team Korea will join them in Los Angeles as well, to prepare for the next round of the Classic.  The final team has yet to be decided; Japan and Cuba will battle tonight for that remaining spot.

 

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Luck Abounds!

Good news today for the Phillies on this lucky St. Patty’s Day; Cole Hamels’ elbow issue is not serious.  He got a cortisone injection and should be back to pitching in about 2 days.  He may or may not be ready for opening day though, as he’ll need time to stretch out his arm and get his pitch count up, but that’s ok; the Phillies have options with JA Happ and Chan Ho Park.

Pot of gold.jpgThe other good news of the day is that the walking wounded have almost all returned to regular play.  Chase Utley after hip surgery; Pedro Feliz after back surgery; and pitchers Chad Durbin and Brad Lidge all played in today’s rout of the Reds.  Utley struck out twice and walked twice, scoring one run; Feliz went 0 for 3.  So the bats will take some time to return, but ultimately, just the fact that they are playing in mid-March is great news.

Same goes for Lidge and Durbin; Durbin pitched 1 inning of no hit ball and Lidge also pitched an inning, giving up one run on two hits and a walk in a non-save situation.  The Phillies went on to win, 8-1 which in itself can also be seen as a stroke of luck; after being whipped by the Yankees yesterday, 11-0, they needed a big win to get the confidence back.

Brett Myers looked fantastic as he took on the Reds, pitching 5 2/3 innings, surrendering only 4 hits and no runs; he struck out 7 batters.  If Myers is needed for Opening Day, it looks like he will be ready.

WBC Highlights

Team USA is currently in the 4th inning of their game against Team Puerto Rico; the winner moves on, the loser is eliminated.  The USA is in the lead for the moment, 3-1.  Let’s hope they brought their lucky shamrocks with them!  Jimmy Rollins started the game as the DH and Shane Victorino is in center.

Next up for the Phillies

Wednesday at 1:05pm, the Phillies will take on the Blue Jays at Bright House field in Clearwater, FL.

 

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And The Winner Is…

Shot Of The Day Award:  The Phillies beat the Cardinals in the bottom of the 9th today on a Jason Ellison walk-off hit that scored Miguel Cairo from 2nd base.  Ellison, a 7-year major league veteran who played for the Rangers, Mariners, Reds and Giants, is trying to make a new home in Philly.  Ellison is now batting .222 this spring and the hit today gave him his first RBI.  Cairo, on the other hand, has been hot this spring, batting .370 with 4 RBI and 2 home runs.  After 13 seasons bouncing around the majors, Cairo signed a minor league deal with the Phillies for 2009.

The Pitching Prowess Award goes to Chan Ho Park, who got the start for the Phils today and managed 4 2/3 solid innings of no-run ball, giving up only 3 hits.  It is looking like Park will make a real run at the 5th starters job, with his biggest competition so far, being JA Happ.  Park seems determined to win the job, even consulting with Jamie Moyer after his outing to get more advice from the ageless  wonder.  During an in-game interview, Park joked that he wished he would be able to pitch at Moyer’s age.  Park displayed some real personality in that interview and is actually a pretty loose and funny guy.  Seems he will fit in well here in Philly, whether that be as a starter or in the pen.


Jayson Werth, Greg Dobbs
and Cairo each had 2 hits in the game today; Werth does not appear to be bothered by any of the recently reported injuries, which included a hamstring and shoulder soreness.  His first inning home run flew straight out of the stadium, over the Tiki Pavillion in left field.

But the real thrill today came when Chase Utley stepped to the plate to lead off the 1st inning for the Phillies.  Fans jumped to their feet and cheered, happy to see Utley in his first official grapefruit league action.  Utley played 4 innings, and although he did not get a hit in his 2 at bats, he looked very comfortable both at the plate and on the field.  Message?  Utley will be ready for Opening Day!  And so, Utley gets my Comeback of the Spring Award :O)

And the Entertainer of the Day Award goes to…Matt Stairs. 
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Stairs gave the crowd a giggle when he stole 2nd base in the 8th inning.  Probably the slowest guy on the team, Stairs kind of resembles a lumberjack more than a professional baseball player.  Known mostly as a power hitter, in his 16 year career, Stairs has hit 254 home runs and stolen only 28 bases….that is 1.75 bases per year, on average.  So, seeing him swipe a base during spring action was very entertaining. ;o)

WBC Highlights

Spanking of the Day Award:  Team Puerto Rico gave a spanking to Team USA yesterday; final score 11-1.  Ouch!  Phillies teammates JC Romero (PR), Jimmy Rollins (USA) and Shane Victorino (USA) were on-hand for the beating, although Romero did not pitch in the game.  Victorino was 0 for 3 and Rollins played the field but did not get an at-bat.  Adam Dunn and Brian McCann each had a pair of hits for Team USA, but the rest of the team pretty much bent over and took the punishment.  Team USA will get a shot at redemption tonight when they take on the Netherlands at 7:30pm tonight.

Next up for the Phillies

Monday at 1:15pm, the Phillies will take on the Yankees at George Steinbrenner field as grapefruit league action continues.

 

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For The Girls…

I hear ya ladies…after I posted a photo of a Hooters girl yesterday at a Spring training game, I received many request from the ladies for some female entertainment.  So, here it is, Phillies-style:

First of all, no Phillie will ever top this photo of former-Phil, Pat Burrell:
Burrell p.jpg

Although, Cole Hamels gave it the college try:

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And Shane Victorino jumped in on the action during the Phillies Cruise in January:

Shane diving 2.jpg

But the rest of the team seems to be a bit modest.  So, I decided to help them along…meet the Phillie-Dales!  Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins (with a new hair-do), Chad Durbin and Greg Dobbs:

Phillie Dales.jpg

And the scary part is, they probably all look even hotter than that in real life :O)  *Sigh!*

Ok, back to reality!  The Elder, Jamie Moyer started the game today against the Rays; Moyer went 5 innings, giving up 2 runs on 4 hits and a walk.  Moyer has looked great all spring.  JA Happ took over in the 6th inning and after the first 2 batters were out, he suddenly gave up a solo home run and a single.  But Happ recovered quickly and got out of the inning with a ground ball.  Happ pitched 3 innings of 1 run ball.  To me, this has been the difference between Happ and Kyle Kendrick or Carlos Carrasco; Happ can make a mistake and move on.  The other two seem emotionally unable to cope.  Chan Ho Park is an experienced veteran who also does not seem shaken easily, so keep an eye on Park as well over these next few weeks.

In the poll I posted yesterday on who will be the Phillies 5th starter, Happ ran away with the contest, getting 100% of the votes.  After Kyle Kendrick’s horrible outing yesterday, this picture is becoming clearer.

The most exciting things that happened offensively for the Phillies in the first 6 innings were Jason Donald getting a walk and Miguel Cairo getting the only hit in those six innings.  After that, Ryan Howard came through with a sac fly with the bases loaded to score the Phillies first run.  The only other offense in the game was a 9th inning home run from Andy Tracy, and the Phils went on to lose 3-2.

WBC Highlights

Team USA lost to Team Venezuela yesterday, but the game really did not mean much; both teams will advance to Round 2 of the Classic.  The other teams who made the cut are Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Japan, Korea and the Netherlands.  Round 2 will begin on Saturday; Rollins and Victorino with Team USA take on JC Romero and Team Puerto Rico at 8pm in Miami.

 

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Colorful Phillies News

P3046059 Hamels.jpg

Cole Hamels had his second outing of spring yesterday against the Reds in a 8-4 loss.  Looking a bit un-Cole like, he gave up 2 runs on 2 hits and one homer in 2 2/3 innings.  After the game, Hamels told Comcast SportsNet that “the fastball’s not there” and that his changeup “doesn’t really have that deception that it normally has during the season.”    Well, where ever those pitches are hiding, I hope he finds them before Opening Day.  Maybe the new blonde highlights have gone to his head?  Ok, so I am really not worried; but if he dyes his hair red next, I may have to consult a counselor.

And in Ryan Howard news, I have a Phillies Phollowers exclusive for you!  Ryan got a new tattoo this week…what is it?  You will have to stay tuned to find out; I am awaiting word on a photo.  A friend of mine knows the guy who did the tattoo and brought her son to meet Howard while he was getting it done.   Reportedly, Howard designed the new ink himself.  And I am guessing it brought him luck, as Howard went 2 for 3 with a solo home run in yesterday’s game against the Reds.  And the ink news continues: Brett Myers got a new tattoo of his own this week.  Will it bring him luck as well?

The luck does appear to have rubbed off on Jason Donald, who is on fire at the plate suddenly!  Donald went 3 for 4 in the game which he played at 3rd base and has brought his spring average to .320 with 8 hits in 25 at-bats, 6 walks and 2 RBI.  If he keeps this pace up, he may be a shoe-in to fill in for Pedro Feliz or Chase Utley if they are not ready for Opening Day.  Plus, he is adorable and very friendly.  I give out extra points for those qualities :O)

Speaking of Utley, here is what he had to tell Comcast SportsNet yesterday about the progress of his recovery:

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Chris Coste, who has been nursing an injury, played a few innings yesterday and looked like he was feeling good.  Also getting back to form, Chad Durbin, Brad Lidge and Feliz are expected to see their first spring action tomorrow at 1:05pm against the Atlanta Braves.

And the sad news of the day; six Phillies rookies were sent to the minors yesterday; pitcher Yorman Bazardo; infielders Ozzie Chavez, Anthony Hewitt and Terry Tiffee; and outfielders Jeremy Slayden and Chris Walker.  This narrows down the roster a bit.  I wish them all good luck!

WBC Highlights

Team Italy beat out Team Canada yesterday, knocking them out of the classic.  Looks like Matt Stairs will return to the Phillies shortly.  Later today, Italy will play Venezuela to see who will face Team USA tomorrow.  Personally, as an Italian-American, I am voting for an Italy-USA match-up.  Of course, I may have just doomed Italy to failure by stating that… :O)

And in yesterday’s win over the Netherlands, Phillie JC Romero pitched 1 1/3 innings of 1 hit ball, getting the win for Team Puerto Rico.  You go JC!

 

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Happ-Y Days Ahead?

In yesterday’s game against the Tigers, JA Happ tried to back up my claim that he would be the winner of the 5th spot in the rotation.  Happ pitched 3 scoreless innings, striking out 7 batters with a mean fastball.  He allowed only 2 hits.  Things are looking Happ-Y for JA who is battling Kyle Kendrick, Chan Ho Park and Carlos Carrasco for the starters spot this year.  But, it is still early…

Also feeling the love is John Mayberry Jr., who has been keeping pace with Ryan Howard this spring.  Both Mayberry and Howard hit 3-run homers in the game, propelling the Phillies to an 8-2 win over the Tigers.  Mayberry continues to impress and, as a right-hander with power, he may be the leading candidate for a bench spot to even out the heavy left-handed line-up.

Jayson Werth saw his first official action of spring and went 1 for 2 with a walk.  Think Werth read my call for action yesterday?  Here’s hoping!  Geoff Jenkins, also aware of his own precarious situation, collected an RBI in the game on a sacrifice. 

Phillies in the WBC

Team USA won their World Baseball Classic opener yesterday against Team Canada, 6-5.  Shane Victorino P3035753.JPGgot the start in center and went 2 for 4 at the plate.  Jimmy Rollins came in as relief for Derek Jeter at short and hit 1 for 2 in the game.  The big blasts for Team USA came from Kevin Youkilis, Adam Dunn and Brian McCann, who each hit home runs in the game.  For Team Canada, Matt Stairs started in right field and went hitless in 3 at bats with 2 strikeouts.

Team Panama lost to Team Puerto Rico, 7-0 yesterday; Carlos Ruiz started at catcher, going 1 for 2 with a walk, but was pulled from the game early due to a neck strain after a collision.  Reports so far are that it is not serious, but no word yet on whether Ruiz will play in today’s game against the Dominican Republic. 

 

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