Results tagged ‘ Team USA ’

Magic Moments of Phillies Spring Training

The first official Spring Training game for the Phillies will take place on Saturday.  I am excited for baseball!  But there is also a little sadness that I cannot be in Clearwater this year to enjoy the first crack of the bat under the warm Florida sunshine.  If you are lucky enough to be heading south, enjoy it!

Spring Training is a magical moment in time where players are generally happy, relaxed and having a good time.  The fan-friendly atmosphere and nice weather draws big crowds each year.  And while the games are interesting, they really don’t mean much.  The real reason to head to Clearwater is to mingle with other fans, chat with players, get autographs and photos and, most importantly, get a closer look at how major leaguers behave when their guard is down.

You may notice a lot of smiles, laughter and silly hijinks.  To demonstrate, and also to get you in the Spring Training frame of mind, here are some of my favorite photos and moments from years past in Clearwater:

First up, the normally quiet and reserved Chase Utley laughs out loud and on another occasion, poses and smiles for me:

Jimmy Rollins waves hello and later attempts to play golf with his bat and ball:

Phillies alum Mike Schmidt has some fun with Reggie Jackson; Charlie Manuel jokes around with his players:

Remember Fan Fest?  For some reason, the Phillies have cancelled this annual tradition of meeting players and getting autographs.  But it was amazing while it lasted.  Here are Chad Durbin and Kyle Kendrick signing and posing for me:

I attended a few Team USA games while in Clearwater.  The most memorable moment was watching Jimmy Rollins and Derek Jeter of the Yankees field balls side-by-side during warm-ups.  The second photo is Chooch, Carlos Ruiz, making an odd face at batting practice:

Here we have the Big Man, Ryan Howard, yucking it up on the field and later doing his impersonation of an airplane (or maybe he was just playing 1st base?):

And finally, just me and my camera hanging out by the field before batting practice.  You can see how close fans can get to the field:

Are you ready to pack your bags yet?  Wishing I was….sigh.  Maybe next year :O)

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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography

Phillies Love New Yankee Stadium

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Jimmy Rollins and Derek Jeter met again for the first time since sharing shortstop duties for Team USA this spring; Rollins greeted Jeter and company with a home run on the first pitch of the ballgame tonight.  In all, the Phillies walked away with 4 home runs in the game and 6 of their 7 runs scored on those blasts.  Jeter and 2 other Yankees also homered in the game, but all were solo shots.  Looks like the Phillies are loving this new Yankee Stadium.

Brett Myers especially was feeling the love tonight; he pitched a one run ballgame up until the 8th inning when 2 more homers gave the Yankees a bit of life.  Myers baffled the Yanks who walked somberly away from the plate while glancing back in awe and surprise at the Phillies pitcher.  Myers allowed those 3 solo home runs, 8 hits, had 7 strikeouts and did not walk anyone.  All this in a full 8 innings of work gave him the 7-3 win. 

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AJ Burnett
of the Yankees, on the other hand, had a rough night trying to stave off the Phils big bats.  Annoyed at the first pitch home run to Rollins, Burnett proceeded to plunk Chase Utley with a pitch immediately afterwards.  Myers, sticking up for his teammate, threw behind Jeter in the Yanks next at-bat and warnings from the umpire ensued.  The warnings had no effect on the game from that point and these 2 teams just went at it like scheduled. 


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Carlos Ruiz
had a big night for the Phillies with 3 hits, 2 RBI on a home run and he even stole a base.  Ruiz gave us all a scare though in his last at-bat when he showed some discomfort after a swing, but he continued playing and appears to be ok.  After the oblique injury he suffered earlier this year, it was a tense moment seeing him cringe.  For now though, all is well.

JA Happ will get his first start of the season tomorrow in the 4:10pm start in New York.  After that, Cole Hamels will take the ball on Sunday afternoon and I will be there to cheer on…well….everybody I guess!  I will get see my dream World Series match-up as well as a much heralded new stadium.  Cannot wait to go!  I was able to find an affordable ticket after much effort, but am not sure about the view I will have.  Fingers crossed!  I will be back with photos :O)

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Photos by Jenn

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USA Eliminated Despite Rollins’ Perfect Game


P3056801.JPGNo one can say that Jimmy Rollins did not do his part to help Team USA advance in the World Baseball Classic; but despite his best efforts, the USA was eliminated by Japan last night.  Rollins, in the DH role yesterday, went 4 for 4 at the plate, including a triple; he also stole a base, had 1 walk and scored a run.  But in all 5 times Rollins was on base, only one time was he able to score.  The other 4 times, he was left stranded.  J-Roll ended his stint in the Classic with a .417 batting average, putting him 3rd place overall for the USA.

Some rather controversial moves by the USA manager, Davey Johnson, also seem to have contributed to the loss.  At times, it seemed more like Johnson was trying to make everyone happy, rather than trying to win the game.  This is an unfortunate consequence of the presser put upon Johnson by Major League coaches to only use their players in certain ways, at certain positions.  For example, pitcher Roy Oswalt was left in the game too long; he should have been pulled earlier in the 4th inning, before the 5 run explosion by Team Japan.  But, likely because Johnson felt a duty to Oswalt’s team, the Astros, he was left in to stretch out his arm in preparation for the upcoming MLB season.  By the time Oswalt got his pitch count in, the damage was done.

Another issue arose in the 8th inning when, with the USA down 6-4, Shane Victorino stood in the on deck circle to pinch hit with a runner on 3rd and 1 out; at the last minute,
Thumbnail image for P3056631.JPGJohnson pulled Victorino and sent Evan Longoria to the plate.  Johnson was obviously hoping for a long ball from Longoria, but the problem was that Longoria, being right handed, was going to have to face a right handed pitcher and monster winds that were blowing towards right field.  Victorino, who is a switch hitter and could have batted left-handed, had a much better shot at getting a hit off the righty and could have used the wind to his advantage.  So, why would Johnson put Longoria in?  One possible reason is that Longoria was a late addition to the team and had not yet gotten an at-bat.  Johnson likely felt indebted to Longoria for making the trip out and decided he should at least get one at-bat out of the trip.  While this is very nice and thoughtful of Johnson, it was not in the best interest of Team USA.  Longoria struck-out, Brian Roberts grounded out and that was the end of the threat.

Defense also hindered the Americans from advancing; with 3 errors in the game, Mark DeRosa playing first base, where he had never started before, and Adam Dunn in right field, Team USA was just not able to keep pace with Japan.  Dunn, put in the game for his bat even though he is a below average fielder, wound up going hitless in 5 at-bats with 1 walk and 3 strikeouts.  In the future, if the USA intends to compete, they are going to have to prepare much earlier for this tournament; plus, players and managers will have to understand that these are real games and that they will be expected to play accordingly.  Will this ever actually happen?  Your guess is as good as mine.

So the good news for the Phillies is that J-Roll and Victorino will be returning to camp.  After a 3-0 loss to the Red Sox yesterday, the Phils will be hoping that J-Roll can kick start the offense for them.  Jamie Moyer gets the start today against the Yankees at 1:05pm.  Less than 2 weeks until Opening Day…things are going to get a lot more interesting the closer we get to April 5th.  More on that later…

(All Photos by Jenn)

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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:
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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:

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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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Kendrick Gets Pounded in Atlanta

As the battle for the 5th starting pitching spot continues, Kyle Kendrick appears to be cracking under the pressure.  In 3 innings against the Braves today, Kendrick surrendered 8 runs on 10 hits and a walk, including 2 home runs.  His ERA for the Spring has ballooned to 14.29.  Yikes!  Pitching coach, Rich Dubee is probably about ready to throttle the poor kid.  Not because he is stinking up the place, but because Dubee knows Kendrick is capable of getting the job done; but to this point, Kendrick has just not found a groove.  He is leaving the door wide open for the other 3 guys to take what was his spot to lose, and run with it.  What do you think the outcome will be?  Vote at the end of this blog.

Besides Kendrick, know who else is likely to take a beating?  The Hooters girls.  I have been yapping about this since Spring Training last year; in Clearwater, they stick Hooters girls out on the field to pretend to be ball girls.  They also give these un-athletic, baseball-ignorant chicks lawn chairs and allow them to sit throughout the game and read a book (I am SO not kidding) while line drive go whizzing past their bleach-blonde heads.  While I understand the entertainment value for the men who are apparently bored with the game and prefer to stare at plastic Barbie dolls, it is a dangerous game they are playing in Florida.  At one game, I watched as a line-drive flew so close to a Hooter’s girl’s head, that her hair flew up in the air as the ball went by and she never even looked up until after it was past her and she felt the breeze.

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There was another close call during the game today as well, as announcers Tom McCarthy and Gary “Sarge” Matthews pointed out.  Matthews said he hopes it never happens, but that the day it does, the Hooters girls will be done in Clearwater.  Seriously, one of these girls is going to be killed someday.  Some of them don’t even have gloves…and those that do, have NO idea what to do with them.  Again, I understand the need to entertain the crowd; heck, when I get bored, here is what I start taking photos of:

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But I am pretty sure that my photography is unlikely to get my head ripped off.  Plus, I know how to catch a ball.  And besides, who doesn’t want to see photos of Greg Dobbs’ behind? :O)

Ok, that is my rant for the day!  Back to real baseball…and more nice views from the field:  Jason Donald! 

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What a cutie!  And this kid is determined to show off his stuff!  Ok, not that stuff; his hitting skills, of course :O)  Donald went 3 for 4 today and used his speed to score 2 runs.  Another hopeful, John Mayberry Jr., got back into action today, going 2 for 3 with 2 RBI including a solo home run.

Joining the hit party were Ryan Howard with 1 hit and 2 RBI; Raul Ibanez with 2 hits and 2 RBI; and Greg Dobbs with 2 hits and an RBI.  And it looks like no one really felt like pitching today, because the final score was 12-10; Atlanta had 21 hits and the Phillies ended up with 15.

And I am still trying to get hold of more information on Ryan Howard’s new tattoo for everyone.  Waiting patiently…  I have not forgotten :O)

WBC Highlights

I was pretty sure I had cursed Team Italy yesterday after proclaiming that I was rooting for them; well, they fell to Team Venezuela, 10-1.  So, Venezuela will play Team USA tonight for the right to move on to Round 2 in the Classic, and I will only root for the team that I do NOT want to win :O)  Brushing up on my Spanish…  Adiós!

 

 

Colorful Phillies News

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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:

http://webjay.org/flash/dark_player

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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A Rookie Pounding / Rollins Gets His Due

Before I get to the game action, check out this video of Jimmy Rollins; it is a commercial for Dick’s Sporting Goods running on ESPN right now and it is hysterical!  I love the end when Jimmy, looking like Mr. Tough Guy, sighs, “Yeah.”  FUNNY!

More about Rollins later…

So the Phillies went down against the Braves in Grapefruit League action yesterday, 7-2.  The almost 22-year old top prospect Carlos Carrasco got roughed up for 6 hits, 3 earned runs and 5 runs total in 2 innings of work.  2 errors in the inning added to the pain, but Carrasco is still showing his young age and inexperience. 

Joe Blanton started the game and pitched 4 innings of 1-run ball.  Blanton looks to be on track for a good season and seems very confident and comfortable in his role.  Not looking so hot thus far has been Ryan Madson; the “Bridge to Lidge” is sporting a 4.50 ERA so far this spring; Madson gave up 1 run in one inning in the Braves game, but more concerning is the 4 hits allowed.  Hoping he is just off to a slow start…

P3024863 Donald.jpg
Jason Donald
, in his push towards the Majors, had a great day; Donald hit 2 for3 with 1 RBI, 1 run scored and a walk.  Donald may be able to fill in for Chase Utley or Pedro Feliz should either of them not be ready to go in April.  Brought up as a shortstop, the Phillies have been trying Donald out at 2nd and 3rd as well to see if he can field those positions.  So far, so good.

John Mayberry Jr., who has been doing very well in his quest to get to the Majors, had a rough day against the Braves pitching, striking out 3 times and going 0 for 4 in the game.  We will see how he stands up as the pitching he faces begins to get tougher.  One fun note one Mayberry; the Phillies have him listed as being 6’6″ tall.  One day last week, I stood right next to him and he looked more like 7 feet tall; curious though as to what he might say, I asked how tall he was; Mayberry laughed and then told me he was 6’5″.  I informed him that the Phillies had given him an extra inch, to which he smiled, shrugged his shoulders and said he wasn’t sure what they had listed.  Anyway, nice guy….I wish him luck! :O)

WBC Highlights

The good news about Carlos Ruiz is that he appears to be fine after a reported neck injury; he played in yesterday’s game against the Dominican Republic, going 1 for 3.  The bad news is that Panama was knocked out the classic, losing the game 9-0.  Ruiz should be returning to the Phillies shortly.

Team USA clinched a spot in the next, beating ex-Phillie Bobby Abreu and the Venezuelan team, 15-6.  Jimmy Rollins was sharp at the plate, going 2 for 3, but got picked off at 2nd after a lead-off double to start the game.  Dustin Pedroia was supposed to lay down a bunt, which drew Rollins further off the plate, but Pedroia missed the bunt and Rollins got nailed.  Pedroia also managed to hit into a double play the next time Rollins got on base.  Guessing there may be no love lost between the two men today.

But Rollins, it seems, has finally gotten his due.  Spending years being overlooked and underrated by media, last night, the ESPN announcers spent nearly half the game talking up Rollins; from how great a fielder he was, to his stolen base record and even noting that Rollins is “officially” the best dancer in the league.  Yes, bust out the disco ball and bellbottoms; Rollins has been crowned the Disco King by ESPN.  Bigger breaking news, there has never been. JRollins cr.jpg

Ok, so besides the 10 minutes they spent talking about dance moves, one announcer even went so far as to say he thought it was a mistake to remove Rollins from the game in favor of Derek Jeter, with how hot Rollins’ bat was. Whoa!  Hold the presses!  A media person chose Rollins over Jeter!  I think hell is about to freeze over.  Well, really this is rational; when you have 2 equally matched players, you go with the hot bat.  But just the mere fact that someone from the media put Rollins and Jeter on the same pedestal was amazing.  And really, it is about time.  How do you spell “respect?”  Apparently, it goes something like, “World Champions!”

 

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