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Archive for June, 2011

Gameday: Athletics (34-43) vs. Phillies (48-29)

Posted by Corey Seidman, Sat, June 25, 2011 06:35 PM Comments: 50

Oakland Athletics (34-43) at Philadelphia Phillies (48-29)

Cole Hamels (9-3, 2.51 ERA) vs. Trevor Cahill (7-5, 3.24 ERA)

Time: 7:05 pm, Citizens Bank Park
Weather:
Possible Rain , 82
TV:
CSN, MLB Network
Media: Twitter and Facebook

Last night was not supposed to be a pitcher’s duel…but the Phillies are good at making the Guillermo Moscosos of the world look like Greg Maddux.

Tonight’s game, however, has the look of a well-pitched and low-scoring affair. NL Cy Young frontrunner, Cole Hamels (yeah, I said it) is set to take on up-and-down As ace, Trevor Cahill. The 6’4″, 225 pound righthander was untouchable through his first ten starts, but gave up 3, 4, 5, 6 and 4 runs over the next handful. In his last start, Cahill shut down the Giants at the spacious Oakland Mausoleum, generating fourteen groundouts to seven flyouts.

Hamels should make mincemeat of the Athletics’ sad, sad lineup. Coco Crisp will play center instead of Ryan Sweeney tonight, Adam Rosales will man short over Cliff Pennington. “Cliff Pennington” sounds like the name of a gentle Englishman who would be friends with the James Bottomtooth from Family Guy.

The only man who can beat Hamels tonight is himself. A victory would give the Phillies their tenth series win of the season.

Phillies Lineup:

Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Victorino CF, Ibanez LF, Brown RF, Ruiz C, Hamels P

GAMEDAY BEER: Anchor Steam Liberty Ale

Anchor Steam is a bay area beer, brewed in San Francisco. Oakland is close enough, though. Liberty Ale is bright and beautiful, a crisp yellow color and it’s even tastier than it looks. Go for Anchor Steam as you watch the Phils take on their former city mates. You’ll be impressed if you’re new to it. I might go pick up a few myself. -by Pat

Go Phillies!

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Madson Dealing with Numbness in Right Hand

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sat, June 25, 2011 01:13 PM Comments: 9

Not another injury. Charlie Manuel said he expects Ryan Madson to be unavailable for the next few games due to numbness in his throwing hand. Jayson Stark of ESPN.com says it may link back to an infield single on May 20 from the bat of Rangers OF David Murphy, when the ball struck Madson.

They are downplaying the situation, it would seem, but the Phillies organization has a tendency of doing that with pretty much every injury, except for Chase Utley’s.

You can be assured that Ruben Amaro is trying to find some bullpen help with Contreras and Lidge still miles away from contributing due to various injuries.

Antonio Bastardo would be the best bet to close games out with Mike Stutes becoming the primary set up man.

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BenFran Hits For Phillies Walk Off

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Fri, June 24, 2011 10:38 PM Comments: 10

Charlie Manuel knows what he is doing.  Vance Worley has benefited from favorable pitching match-ups this season.  He is a young pitcher with good stuff but with obvious and excruciating control issues.  But, it’s worked for him thus far.

Worley took a no hitter into the sixth inning before Hideki Matsui doubled with two outs.  He finished the inning and was finished for the game.  The rec-spec righty had thrown 105 pitches after six innings, allowed only one hit while walking and striking out four hitters.

Unfortunately for him, Oakland starter Guillermo Moscoso would not be out done.  Moscoso also took a no hitter into the sixth inning tonight before giving up a single to the hit machine Placido Polanco with one out.  Just as Oakland couldn’t capitalize with a runner on the Phillies, too, stranded Polanco after Chase Utley flew out and Ryan Howard grounded out to second base.

Continue reading BenFran Hits For Phillies Walk Off

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Gameday: A’s (34-42) vs. Phillies (47-29)

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Fri, June 24, 2011 06:06 PM Comments: 29

Oakland Athletics (34-42) at  Philadelphia Phillies (47-29)

Vance Worley (2-1, 3.41 ERA) vs. Guillermo Moscoso (2-3, 3.30 ERA)

Time: 7:05 pm, Citizens Bank Park
Weather: Possible Rain , 82
TV: CSN, MLB Network
Media: Twitter and Facebook

The saying ‘It’s good to be home’ could not ring any truer than on this night.  The Phillies left St. Louis on a bad note, losing the final game of the three game series.  They also lost Ace #3 Roy Oswalt, who left with tightness in his lower back and ended up on the disabled list again. Some home cookin’ is in order.

The Phillies lead the league with 28 home wins and will look to improve on their current seven-game home winning streak tonight as they welcome the Oakland Athletics to town.  During the streak the Phils’ offense has posted a +28 run differential.

Vance Worley (2-1, 3.41) will also look to continue his winning ways in front of the home crowd.  He is 2-0 in three home starts with a 2.12 ERA.  Worley has been up and down this season, splitting time between the Phillies and the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, but is looking to stick with the injury to Oswalt.

Continue reading Gameday: A’s (34-42) vs. Phillies (47-29)

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Did the Dozer Break Roy Oswalt for Good?

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, June 24, 2011 11:44 AM Comments: 39

Can Roy Oswalt continue on? We'll find out soon. (PHOTO: AP)

It was a gentile situation; one that required a team to forget about the game and allow a player to tend to family, friends, and a town in need. The Phillies did just that when they permitted Roy Oswalt to fly home to Weir, Mississippi, after another rash of tornadoes hit in late April, wrecking even more a year after twisters leveled much of Roy Oswalt’s hometown in 2010.

Travel back with me to 2005. A pledge was made by owner Drayton McLane to the Astros ace; you clinch the NL pennant for Houston and a brand new bulldozer is yours. Roy O. did just that, tossing seven innings of one-run ball to send the Astros to the World Series. Following the season, just before Christmas, McLane presented him with a $200,000 dozer as he’d promised.

The Phillies OK’d Oswalt’s latest humanitarian effort because it was the correct thing to do. Friends were lost in the storms, roads needed to be cleared, family was going through a tough time. Oswalt has the financial wherewithal, and the tools, to help clear roads with his equipment and make life easier for a town in shambles. There was really no other choice.

But did this trip home wreck Oswalt’s season, and possibly even his career?

Continue reading Did the Dozer Break Roy Oswalt for Good?

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Dr. Strangeglove: On Pitcher Usage

Posted by Michael Baumann, Fri, June 24, 2011 09:00 AM Comments: 9

Okay, you’re right. Ryan Madson ought not to be closing games for the Phillies. However, it has nothing to do with mentality, or toughness, or any of the intangible reasons that have kept the Phillies’ best reliever out of the bullpen’s most glamorous spot for three years. Madson is the Phillies’ best pitcher out of the bullpen, by far, to the point where any argument to the contrary is really not worth discussing. So what should he do, if not close? Something far more important.

As an aside, this is hardly new ground being broken here; people smarter and more knowledgeable than I have been calling for the abolition of the closer role as such for more than a decade. This is just a different take on that argument.

Major league managers use their top relief pitchers in one of these three situations:

Continue reading Dr. Strangeglove: On Pitcher Usage

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Phillies Back’ed Into Corner, Could Lose Oswalt

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Thu, June 23, 2011 11:57 PM Comments: 13

That got out of hand, quickly.

Roy Oswalt made it through two innings before he was shut down with tightness in his lower back.  To add insult to injury, he left after giving up five hits and four runs against the Cardinals in this final game of the three game series.

The back injury is something Oswalt had been dealing with almost all season.  It was clear he was not 100% today grimacing in pain after making pitches which invoked a visit from catcher Carlos Ruiz.

Kyle Kendrick came in to pitch the third and stayed for the next four innings.  Kendrick, who has been used out of the bullpen and as a spot starter, allowed two runs on five hits before handing the ball over to Juan Perez in the seventh.  Perez was called up today after the Phillies put reliever Jose Contreras on the disabled list.  The 32 year-old reliever walked two, struck out one and did not allow any hits.

Continue reading Phillies Back’ed Into Corner, Could Lose Oswalt

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Gameday: Phillies (47-28) at Cardinals (40-35)

Posted by Michael Baumann, Thu, June 23, 2011 06:30 PM Comments: 29

Philadelphia Phillies (47-28) at St. Louis Cardinals (40-35)

Roy Oswalt (4-5, 3.37 ERA) vs. Chris Carpenter (1-7, 4.47 ERA)

Time: 8:15 p.m., Busch Stadium
Weather: Partly Sunny, 72
TV: CSN WPHL
Media: Twitter and Facebook

I’m sorta broken up about the Flyers trading away Mike Richards, so please forgive me if I start *sniff* sobbing throughout this post.

Tonight, we get a matchup that would have been much better in 2005 than in 2011. That year, Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter won the NL Cy Young, while Roy Oswalt, then with the Astros, finished fourth in the voting. Since then, both have slipped some, with Carpenter battling a little bit of bad luck to a 1-7 record and a 4.47 ERA. Carpenter’s peripherals show that record and ERA are the result of a combination of an increased line drive rate and, frankly, some bad support from his teammates; his xFIP is at 3.34, in line with his career averages.

Oswalt, however, may actually be losing something, as Dave Golebiewski explains at Baseball Analytics. Still, The Speedwagon has a 4.06 xFIP through 12 starts, so complaining about that from your fourth starter when your top 3 are the three best pitchers in the NL seems a little churlish.

Continue reading Gameday: Phillies (47-28) at Cardinals (40-35)

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Kieran Carobine talks with the Pulse Network

Posted by Brian Michael, Thu, June 23, 2011 04:20 PM Comments: 1

Yesterday, our own Kieran Carobine spoke with the Pulse Network about the Phillies (what else is there, really?). Kieran goes over the amazing pitching, the struggling bats, and so much more.

Enjoy!

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Contreras to DL; Juan Perez Called Up from Iron Pigs

Posted by Pat Gallen, Thu, June 23, 2011 10:35 AM Comments: 13

UPDATE, 11:33 am: The Phillies have released this statement with Jose Contreras officially heading to the DL.

Right-hander José Contreras was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a right forearm strain, retroactive to June 20, announced Benny Looper, Phillies Assistant General Manager, Player Personnel.  To fill his spot on the 25-man roster, left-hander Juan Perez had his contract selected from triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Contreras, 39, is 0-0 with a 3.86 ERA in 17 games for the Phillies this season.  He has converted all five of his save opportunities while holding opponents to a .220 batting average (11-50) in 14.0 innings.  Contreras previously spent a month on the disabled list this season with a right flexor pronator strain (April 25-May 26).

Perez has gone 0-3 with four saves and a 3.52 ERA in 28 appearances with Lehigh Valley this season.  The 32-year-old has struck out 41 batters in 30.2 innings (12.17 SO/9.0 IP) and held left-handers to a .184 average (7-38).  He is 0-1 with a 5.17 ERA in 24 career major league appearances, all with the Pittsburgh Pirates over the 2006-07 seasons.

Perez will wear #53.

Continue reading Contreras to DL; Juan Perez Called Up from Iron Pigs

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