Results tagged ‘ Tim Lincecum ’

Holidays, Baseball and Food Coma’s…

To start with, I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and did not lapse into a turkey coma!  I also hope no one got trampled attempting to enter Wal-Mart at 3am on Friday ;o)  Holidays can either be fun or hazardous to your health…I hope you went with “fun.”

Speaking of holidays and shopping, what would you like to receive this holiday season?  I would like for Mike Schmidt to age backwards and play 3rd base for the Phillies again. 
Thumbnail image for P8013596 Lincecum.jpg
I would also like the Giants to release Tim Lincecum for his
bad, drug induced behavior so the Phillies can have him.  I also wish aliens would come down from outer space and give us back Cole Hamels: Version 2008.  Clearly, he was abducted and it is time to bring him back.

By the way, 3 years ago, current GM Ruben Amaro Jr., who was assistant GM at the time, asked a room full of female fans if they could sign any pitcher in the league to the Phillies, who would it be?  I shouted, “Tim Lincecum!”  Ruben looked at me like I was nuts and decided that the woman who suggested Brandon Webb had a better idea.  Webb went down with a shoulder injury in April 2009 and did not play the entire season.  Lincecum has now won 2 Cy Young’s in a row.  Hey Ruben, still think I am nuts?  Just a little holiday fun for you there :O)

Ok, so clearly we cannot sign Mr. Lincecum.  But the Phillies have a lot of work to do this off-season to improve the pitching staff.  It looks to be a quiet market right now.  Things should start to heat up when the Winter Meetings begin on December 7th.

The few moves made so far have not even made a small ripple in the atmosphere.  The signing of Juan Castro to replace Eric Bruntlett on the bench seems like a lateral move, rather than an improvement.  Castro hit .277 last year with the Dodgers but is a career .230 hitter.  This news is not exactly knocking Phillies fans out of their boots.  We hope bigger and better things will be coming soon…

In other news, Jamie Moyer was recently hospitalized and had surgery to remove an infected blood collection that may have resulted from his previous groin surgery.  It should not affect his Spring Training schedule and he appears to be recovering well.  I wish him luck!


Thumbnail image for PA040202 JAHapp.jpgFrom the long time veteran to the rookie, JA Happ has been named to the Topps’ 51st All-Rookie Team, which is just one of many honors he garnered this off-season.  Happ is still up for the Rookie of the Year award in the This Year In Baseball awards. 
Voting continues until December 11th and many Phillies like Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and others are in the running.

Thumbnail image for shane melissa 2.jpgAnd finally, congratulations to Shane and Melissa Victorino who tied the knot earlier this month in Hawaii!  They are two really great people and I wish them all the best!

Lincecum & Happ photos by Jenn

 

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

 

 

Age Trumps Youth As Martinez Regains Old Form

With 2 rain-shortened games for Pedro Martinez in his first 4 starts, he had to be wondering when he might get a real shot at showing the Phillies what he has left in the tank.  Wonder no more; Pedro is back to the Pedro of old.  The 3-time Cy Young award winner beat out the Giants ace, reigning NL Cy Young winner, Tim Lincecum.  Take a look at the stats comparison: 

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Martinez, P (W, 3-0)

7

5

1

1

0

9

1

3.52

Lincecum (L, 13-5)

7

4

2

2

1

11

1

2.34

 

Martinez Lincecum copy.jpgIt was a really, really close match up, but Martinez came out on top.  The only big mistake he made all night was the very first pitch of the game which the Giants Eugenio Velez sent into the outfield seats.  After that, it was lights out from Martinez.

Lincecum made a few more mistakes and the Phillies made him pay.  Jayson Werth sent a hanging slider into the second deck of the left field seats in the 2nd inning.  Then in the 6th, Chase Utley was hit by a pitch.  A visibly annoyed Lincecum then had to face the big man, Ryan Howard and Howard took advantage.  Howard smashed a fastball into centerfield for a double which scored Utley.   Those were the only two runs for the Phillies, but with the great pitching, it was all they needed. 

The back-end combination of Ryan Madson in the 8th and Brad Lidge in the 9th finally worked the way it was meant to.   Madson sent the Giants down in order and Lidge got the save, although it was another eventful one.  With 2 outs, he gave up a hit, a walk and two stolen bases.  But Lidge buckled down and to the relief of everyone, finally got the third out.  Whew!

In other news, Brett Myers is back!  He will be activated tonight when the Phillies travel to Houston to start a 4-game series.  Myers has made an amazing comeback from a very serious hip surgery that looked like it may have him out for the entire year.  But Myers worked hard to get back into shape and the Phillies can really use him in the pen, especially if Lidge had another melt down.

A few other September call-up include pitcher Jack Taschner, who was with the Phillies a good part of the year.  And Paul Hoover, a 33-year old career minor league catcher, has been called up as well.  We should also be seeing JC Romero back soon; I saw him working out with the team on Wednesday, which is a very good sign.

Tune your TV in to Phillies baseball tonight at 8:05pm; Cliff Lee will try to bounce back from a bad start his last time out against the Astros.  Go Phillies!

Photoshopping by Jenn

 

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

 

 

Penny Gives Phillies His 2 Cents

After being shut-out 1-0 on Tuesday, the Giants were looking for revenge and they got it in the form of new acquisition, Brad Penny.  Penny struggled with the Red Sox and had an ERA near 6.00, but the move to the National League seems to be the cure.  Phillies hitters looked ridiculous all night long and managed only 5 hits in the game, all singles.

 

But this is nothing new; the Phillies have been in an offensive slump for a while now and there are no signs that it will end anytime soon, especially with Tim Lincecum pitching for the Giants tonight.  When things are going bad, a Cy Young winner is the last person you want to see.  But they have no choice and will need to figure out where the bats have disappeared to.

 

JA Happ has pitched well all year, but is getting no run support at all.  Happ has the third lowest run support of any pitcher in the NL with more than 100 innings and he has still has managed a 2.77 ERA and a 10-4 record.  Last night, he made a few mistakes, including allowing back-to-back homers in the 6th inning which tallied 3 runs for the Giants.  Happ still pitched a good game with just the one bad inning that did him in; but again, no runs = no win.

 

And while it is always nice to see Aaron Rowand back in Philly, he did hit one of those home runs.  And what was this all about exactly?  See Carlos Ruiz pointing?


 

Sorry, could not resist.  It does kind of look like he might pee on the plate, but he hit a home run instead.  Just as effective, I suppose.

 

Here are few non-offensive shots from the game:


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Charlie Manuel needs to start smacking some heads together in that clubhouse.  The inability to score runs, especially those in scoring position, is becoming a major issue in what is usually a breakout month for this team.  Raul Ibanez has not been able to hit the side of a barn since the All-Star break, after what was an amazing first half.  Now, Ibanez is hitting into double plays all the time which is killing the offense. 

 

But everyone is guilty; since the Atlanta series, Shane Victorino has 2 hits in his last 20 at-bats; Jayson Werth is 4 for 16; Jimmy Rollins is 4 for 20.  And just for fun, Ibanez is 1 for his last 21 at-bats.  Ugh.  Someone please find the offense…now!

 

On to more fun topics:  Before the game, Cole Hamels was awarded with the Roberto Clemente award for his community service.  His wife Heidi joined him on the field and if you were not sure before if she was pregnant, it is pretty obvious now.  How cute are these two with all their aspirations to adopt like 500 African babies, plus popping out a few of their own?  All together now…”Awwww!”

 

Here is a Photo Album with more pictures from last nights very depressing game.  It was Latino Heritage night and there are some shots from that as well as the pre-game activities.  Enjoy!

 

 

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

Hamels Steals A Base And A Win

It was a tight one, but Cole Hamels pitched the Phillies to a 1-0 win; a complete game shut-out against the Giants.  He has not only found his Mojo, but Hamels also found his curveball and even his fastball location.  Towards the end of the game, Hamels retired 21 batters in a row. 

By the 9th inning, he had a 1 hit shut-out going when Rich Aurilia knocked a single and it looked like things might get scary.  But then Hamels busted out his new and improved pick-off move and nailed the pinch runner trying to steal second base.  He nailed down the final two outs and sent the crowd home happy.P6216377 Hamels.jpg

In 9 innings, Hamels struck out 9 batters and gave up only 2 hits and 1 walk.   All that and he even stole a base in the game; it was the first stolen base of his career.  Is Hamels back?  It certainly looks that way.

Both pitchers were dealing tonight and Jonathan Sanchez shut down the Phillies offense.  Ryan Howard managed to knock in the only run for the Phillies after Shane Victorino singled, stole a base and advanced on a Chase Utley sacrifice.  Howard had 2 hits in the game, but the rest of the offense was mostly anemic.  But all is well that ends well and the Phillies take Game 1 of this series.

Up Next

The series continues with the Giants tomorrow at 7:05pm with JA Happ on the mound.  Tim Lincecum was originally scheduled to start for the Giants, but with the new acquisition of Brad Penny off waivers from the Red Sox, it looks like Penny will get the nod; Lincecum will go on Thursday night.  I will be at the game tomorrow hoping for the Happ-Y outcome :O)

Accolades

Ryan Howard has been named NL Player of the Week right on the heels of Jayson Werth receiving the same honor last week.  Howard batted .393 with 5 homers and 12 RBI.  September is here and Howard is all warmed up!

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

Phillies – Giants Series Photos

I have finished the Photo Albums from the 4-game Phillies – Giants series in San Francisco.  The first one covers all around AT&T Park, inside and out.  The second album is of all 4 games.  Here is a quick summary of what you will see:

Game 1, July30th: Police Appreciation Day; Rodrigo Lopez starts for the Phillies and Jonathan Sanchez for the Giants.

Game 2, July 31st:  Cliff Lee’s first game with the Phillies vs. Ryan Sadowski for the Giants; Aaron Rowand’s 1,000 career hit.  There is also a photo of an A’s World Series Ring that appears to be a very good replica.

Game 3, Aug. 1st: Giants Family Softball Game; Dog Days at the park; Olympic Gold Medalist Peggy Fleming in a pre-game ceremony; Joe Blanton starts for the Phillies and Tim Lincecum for the Giants.

Game 4, Aug. 2nd: Cole Hamels starts for the Phillies and Barry Zito for the Giants; there is one photo of the Phillies tour group looking very unhappy in the stands.  FYI – I was not on the official tour; I went on my own but did talk to many people on the tour who had a great time, except for all the losses :O(

I will be posting more photos from the non-baseball events in a few days and will put up a link to that when it is done for anyone who wants to see the sights from San Francisco.  It will include whale watching, the zoo, aquarium, sea lions, Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, different areas in the city, Sausalito, a few parks and more.

All photos by Jenn

 

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

 

Phillies Mowed Down By Cy Young Winner

P8013596 TL.jpg

Yesterday, our Cy Young winner, Cliff Lee, stole the show.  Today, it was the Giants turn.  Tim Lincecum looked like he was yielding a weed whacker as he mowed down Phillies hitters and pitched his team to a 2-0 win.

The Phillies had their shots at him though.  They even left the bases loaded at one point.  But every time runners got on base, the usual heroes like Chase Utley, Raul Ibanez and Ryan Howard either struck out or nubbed a slow grounder.  It was not a pretty site.

P8013608 Blanton.jpg
Joe Blanton
held up his end of the deal and matched Linceum through 4 innings.  But Blanton ran into trouble in the 5th when he booted a routine grounder which extended the inning and turned into a run for the Giants.  Aaron Rowand slid into home past the tag of catcher Paul Bako on a Juan Uribe sac fly.  Uribe hit another sac fly in the 7th to give the Giants an extra run.

But no blame can be placed on Blanton; he went 7 innings and allowed only those 2 runs on 7 hits and did not issue any walks.  It was a well pitched game overall; now, the Phillies just need to find some offense going into tomorrow’s finale.

Before the game, fans were entertained by the Giants Family Softball Game; it was also Dog Day at the park.  The cute quotient was sky high:

giants pregame.jpg
So, at least I had some entertainment tonight.  Tomorrow’s afternoon match features Cole Hamels for the Phils and Barry Zito for the Giants.  Youth vs. Age; or, a bit nutty vs. totally insane?  If you do not know what I am talking about, check out
Barry Zito’s Twitter page.  My favorite tweet is, “What would you do with a Klondike bar? At this hour I can think of a few things, what gets melted ice cream out of the carpet anyways?”  This guy has serious issues.  Anyway, game time is 4:05pm EST.  Enjoy!

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

In Phillies Debut, Lee Pitches Complete Game

P7312943 Lee.jpg

We can all get over the disappointment of no Roy Halladay.  Cliff Lee has filled the rotation spot admirably.  In his first start for the Phillies, Lee went the distance, allowing only 4 hits over 9 innings and claimed a 5-1 victory.  Even more incredible, Lee went 2 for 4 at the plate with a single and a double.  He is now batting .500 in the National League :O)

 As for the offense, I am a true believer in Karma.  I ran into Jayson Werth today in downtown San Francisco and said hello; he actually paused and said hello back.  Then before the game, Werth spotted me in the crowd and waved hello.  He then proceeded to hit a solo home run in the 2nd and also drove in two more runs in the 7th.  So, because Werth was kind to little ole’ me, he had a very nice game.  That is what I think anyway… :O)

Oh, I also saw the newest Giant downtown today; Freddy Sanchez was acquired from the Pirates earlier in the week and today, he was wandering around checking out his new home town.  I did not speak to him though and we all see how that worked out for his team :O)

One other Giants note for the day; Aaron Rowand, former Phillie who I am still pathetically very attached to, hit his 1,000 career hit in the game tonight off Lee.  I believe that deserves a short photo montage:

A Rowand 1000.jpg
Congrats to Aaron!

So tomorrow Joe Blanton will face the Giants ace, Tim “I am so adorable you want to pinch my cheeks” Lincecum.  And yes, I am told that is his official nickname ;O)  Game time is 9:05pm.  I will be there again, freezing my backside off in chilly San Francisco.  Think warm thoughts for me :O)

Photos by Jenn

 

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

 

The Old Hamels Is Back; The Old Lidge Is Still MIA



P7098599 Hamels.jpgCole Hamels
returned to MVP form last night against the Diamondbacks in a 4-3 win.  Everyone was a little nervous in the 1st inning when Hamels allowed a solo home run, but after that, he settled in and did not allow another run.  Even better than that, Hamels pitched all the way through 8 full innings, allowed only 4 hits and struck out nine batters.  Welcome back, Cole!  We missed you.

Shane Victorino led the offensive attack with 3 hits, 2 RBI and 2 runs scored.  The D-Backs helped out the Phillies offense as well with 2 key errors in the game, much like they did on Monday night.  But those errors and the extra run the Phillies scored because of the errors turned out to be the difference in the game.

Going into the 9th with a 4-1 lead, the Phillies sent Brad Lidge to the mound and he immediately got into big trouble.  Lidge walked the leadoff batter and then gave up a 2-run homer to the next batter to cut their lead to 1 run.  By what must have been some act of God, Lidge managed to get the 3 outs and end the game without blowing the save.

But fans everywhere are now officially worried about Brad Lidge.  No one expected perfection like last season, but a record of 0-4, 6 blown saves, 24 walks in 38 innings and an ERA of 7.11 was not expected either.  The Phillies will not go far in the playoffs with a closer posting these numbers.  Either Lidge needs to get his act together, or could Brett Myers return to the closer role in August, which is when he may return after hip surgery?  Does this seem farfetched?  Maybe.  But Lidge cannot continue to hurt the team.  Last night, he got lucky.  Going forward, it will not always be the case.

And is this some sort of weird Phillies curse?  You get a great season out of a guy, like Lidge in 2008; you sign him to a huge contract and mayhem ensues.  Remember Pat Burrell?  Burrell had a breakout season in 2002; then in 2003, the Phillies gave him a monster contact of 6 years, $50 million dollars and guess what happened next?  Burrell struggled for years and did not fulfill his true potential until he led the Phillies to the playoffs in 2007 and then to the World Series in 2008.  But from 2003-2006, it was not always pretty.  Is Lidge suffering from the post-contract blues?  Whatever the case, with 3 years invested in Lidge, the Phillies need to get him back on track and fast.

The Phillies have one more game against the D-Backs tonight at 9:40pm with JA Happ on the mound.  I am in San Francisco right now awaiting their arrival on Thursday for a 4-game series against the Giants.  And while I am very excited to see Giants pitchers like Tim Lincecum and Barry Zito, disappointment set in this morning when it was announced that Randy Johnson has a torn rotator cuff and will be out for at least 3 weeks.  Johnson is a future Hall of Famer, so I was hoping to see him pitch.  I even tried to see his 300th win in DC back in June, but the game was rained out and I could not go the next day.  And such is my luck…oh well!  I still get to see my Phillies and hang out in California for a week, so it’s all good :O) 

Off topic, I would like to send out my condolences to the family and friends of former Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator, Jim Johnson.  Johnson lost his battle with cancer yesterday at the age of 68.  May he rest in peace.

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

All-Star Game 2009 – The Curse Continues

The curse continues for the National League as they lost their 12th consecutive All-Star Game tonight against the American League.  And poor Charlie Manuel became the first Phillies manager in history to lose the All-Star game :O(  Phils now hold a record of 6-1.  No worries Charlie…just bring us another Championship and all will be forgotten :O)

The first inning did not exactly kick the game off right for the National League as Tim Lincecum struggled and allowed one earned run.  An unearned run also scored in the inning after an error.  Yes folks, as Albert Pujols booted a ball at first base, an angel lost its wings…and the American League took a 2-0 lead.  It’s ok though…we still love Albert :O)

The NL battled back and scored 3 in the 2nd inning thanks to hits by David Wright, Shane Victorino (yeah!) and Yadier Molina.  After that, offense all around was fairly quiet until the 8th inning.  Curtis Granderson tripled, Victor Martinez was given the intentional walk and then Adam Jones hit a sac fly to score Granderson and give the AL a 4-3 lead.   The NL got their shot in the bottom half of the inning; Ryan Howard was sent in to pinch hit with 2 outs and 2 on in the 8th and he went down on strikes to end the threat.  Ugh.  The ever-adorable Mariano Rivera closed out the game for the AL in the 9th and so, the curse goes on.

As for the rest of the Phillies, Chase Utley went hitless, but had several stellar defensive plays.  Victorino ended up 1 for2 with a run scored; Jayson Werth struck out after a great at-bat against Jonathan Papelbon and later, made an amazing running catch in centerfield; P5314810 Ibanez.jpgand Raul Ibanez went 0 for 2, but looked thrilled anyway just to be playing.  It was his first All-Star appearance in his 14th major league season at 37 years of age.  Congrats to Raul for finally getting there!

As for the broadcast, FOX was annoying as usual.  I think I heard more about Taco Bell and Domino’s Pizza than I did about the game.  And while it was nice to hear the President Obama in the broadcast booth, was it really necessary to see him?   Don’t get me wrong;  I love Obama and all that, but I already know what he looks like.  I’d have been just as happy to hear him speak while the game was showed in its entirety on the TV screen, instead of the annoying flashes back and forth from individual pitches to a visual of Obama in the booth.

Pedro – Say It Ain’t So!

Much to the dismay of Phillies fans everywhere, Pedro Martinez passed his physical and has been signed by the Phillies.  Pedro will get 1 million plus another possible 1.5 million in incentives.  He will need about 3 weeks of rehab and minor league work to be ready.  The good news is that the price is cheap; however, we are all familiar with the saying “you get what you pay for.”  If Martinez has some magic left in that arm, then this deal will turn out to be a real bargain; if not, at least they did not overpay. 

Personally, I worry more about the clubhouse chemistry being disrupted than anything else.  Martinez is notorious for his sandpaper-like personality and penchant for creating controversy.  If he does not pitch well, no biggie.  It was a small investment.  But if he wreaks havoc on the peaceful and serene Phillies-vibe, then the deal will not have been worth the risk.  We shall see how it goes…

A Day Without Baseball?

So no baseball tomorrow…except for the Double-A All-Star Game in Trenton, NJ.  I will be risking life and limb as I venture into Trenton, the dregs of Jersey, but will be attending the game anyway. ;O)  Four Phillies prospects will be in the game, with Michael Taylor participating in the Home Run Derby. I will return (I hope) with photos and all body parts still in place.  Wish me luck :O)

Photo by Jenn

 

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

 

Home Run Derby 2009

P2283235 Howard.jpg

The St. Louis crowd loves Ryan Howard.  But when Albert Pujols made his entrance, the fans officially went nuts.  Both sluggers were favorites to win the 2009 Home Run Derby; Pujols playing for the Cardinals and Howard, a St. Louis native, both had a lot of support going into the contest.

The first round results, which put Pujols into a swing-off with Joe Mauer and Carlos Pena, ended with both Pujols and Howard making the second round along with Prince Fielder and Nelson Cruz.  Pujols ended round #2 with 11 total homers and Howard wound up hitting 15.  Cruz stepped in for his turn and out-did Howard by just one home run for 16 total.  Howard’s last hope was that Fielder, the final batter in round 2, would not surpass his 15 homers.  Sadly for Phillies fans, Fielder wound up hitting 17, knocking Howard out of the contest.  Ryan seemed relieved though, as exhaustion set in and he was likely happy to be done.


It was a nice effort all around, although not as exciting as last year’s derby where Josh Hamilton put on a show that will probably never been repeated.  Hamilton hit 28 homers in the first round, many of which disappeared from sight in old Yankee Stadium.  Although he went on to take 2nd place to Justin Morneau, those of us who witnessed the amazing display of power and grace will not soon forget it.  I had a feeling this year’s derby would pale in comparison, but how could it not?

But the derby is always an entertaining event that I look forward to seeing every year.  And the 2009 champion is Prince Fielder, who hit 6 in the final round to Cruz’s 5.  Congrats to Fielder!

Tune in for the All-Star Game tomorrow night at 8pm on FOX.  Tim Lincecum will start for the NL and Roy Halladay for the AL.  As for your Phillies, Chase Utley gets the start at 2nd, Raul Ibanez in left and Shane Victorino in center.  Howard and Jayson Werth will be available on the bench.

My predictions for the game are as follows:

- The NL will finally break the curse of 11 straight AL wins (plus 1 tie) and win the game!

- Chase Utley will look FABULOUS, even if he strikes out multiple time.  I guarantee it.

- Tim Lincecum will be asked by at least 15 fans if he is the teenage son of one of the other players.

- St. Louis fans will chant “RAUUUUUUL!” even if they do not know why they are doing it.

- The broadcasters for FOX will screw up simple facts at an approximate rate of 2.3 times per inning.

- The FOX broadcast will also be boring, redundant and completely void of any redeeming value…sorry to have to break it to you.  But, enjoy the game…with the volume turned down :O)

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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