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Archive for July, 2011

Potential Prospect Packages Phils Could Trade

Posted by Jay Floyd, Tue, July 26, 2011 10:00 AM Comments: 37

Jon Singleton is a top trade piece held by the Phillies. (PHOTO: Phoul Ballz)

In recent years, the Phillies have acquired elite talent, adding Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay and Roy Oswalt in separate blockbuster trades. The packages of players sent away to make those deals all included highly ranked prospects.

Fans and experts alike presume the Phillies have depleted their system of prospects with the amount top minor league players traded in those deals. That’s far from true, as many individuals currently in Philadelphia’s developmental system have proven worthy of high recognition.

If the Phillies are going to put together similar groups of players to add a key contributor at the big league level again this season, they’ll surely need to send away more ascending young talent. In order to understand what type of package the Phillies would be required to deal, it’s important to look at what they gave up in those previous trades.

Cleveland/Lee trade…July, 2009- RHP Jason Knapp, IF Jason Donald, C Lou Marson, RHP Carlos Carrasco.

Knapp was the young ace of the Class A Lakewood staff and had earned attention with his high-90′s fastball. The emerging young hurler with ace potential on the BlueClaws staff this year is last season’s top draft choice Jesse Biddle. But Biddle, a 19-year-old Philadelphia native, doesn’t throw quite as hard as Knapp – his fastball has been ranging in the low-90′s in recent starts. In his latest 10 starts, Biddle has been sharp, posting a 1.85 ERA.

Donald was a force with Double A Reading in 2008 (.304 avg, 14 HR, .889 OPS in 92 games) and turned 25-years-old in 2009, after he was sent to Cleveland. The current Phils prospect most comparable to Donald is likely third baseman/first baseman Cody Overbeck, who has ripped up Double A pitching, but has now hit a bit of a skid at Triple A Lehigh Valley. The 25-year-old Overbeck leads the Phillies organization thus far in 2011 with 21 homeruns, combined at two levels. Overbeck, an 8th round draft pick in 2008, has even dabbled in the outfield this year, adding to his versatility and appeal to potential trade partners.

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Writers Roundtable: The Top Threat Is _______

Posted by Corey Seidman, Mon, July 25, 2011 07:00 PM Comments: 20

Jair Jurrjens and the Braves will give the Phillies a run for their money...right? (PHOTO: KFFL.com)

The whole crew got together to discuss the Phillies’ top National League challenger. There were conflicting viewpoints as to who poses the biggest threat this Fall…

Michael Baumann: The biggest worry is the Braves, for two reasons: first, because the Braves, being in the same division, are in the most direct position to knock the Phillies out of playoff contention. The second reason is that they’re the next-best team in the National League. The Braves, like the Phillies, are constructed around a couple of great hitters and a phenomenal starting rotation, which also sets them up well for the playoffs, where a single great start by Tommy Hanson or Jair Jurrjens (never mind Roy Halladay or Cole Hamels) can swing a team’s fortunes.

It’s interesting to note that both leagues are shaping up the same way: two clear frontrunners in the East, a single good team pulling away in the West, and a cesspool of mediocrity in the Central, where three or four teams are vying for the privilege of being swept out of the first round of the playoffs. Simply put, the Phillies are clear frontrunners, and are setting themselves up for an exhilarating–if low-scoring–NLCS with Atlanta.


Jay Floyd: The Brewers. Milwaukee entered the season as a favorite in the NL Central division. While they’re currently battling in the standings with the upstart Pirates, that won’t last, as Pittsburgh doesn’t have the talent to stay hot through September. Milwaukee is primed to run away with the division, especially if the Reds can’t pull their season together.

With the trio of Rickie Weeks, Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder leading the team in virtually all offensive categories and the group of Zack Greinke, Shaun Marcum and Yovani Gallardo leading the team on the pitching side, it’s clear where the majority of the talent lies on this club.

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Early Exit for Lee, Phillies Come Up Short

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Mon, July 25, 2011 05:59 PM Comments: 3

(PHOTO: Philly.com)

I guess if something was going to give, it would have to be the Phillies.  Mother Nature has been pumping her hot breathe up and down the East Coast all weekend.  The Phillies stayed toe-to-toe with the beast for the first three games of the San Diego series taking all three heading into Monday.

Cliff Lee (9-7, 3.05) was on the hill looking to get all double-digit in the win column to join mound-mates Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels who both have 12 wins for the season.  Unfortunately for Lee, he was only able to last five innings in the Philadelphia sun giving up five runs on 10 hits.

The Phillies were unable to overcome the five run hole after four innings but didn’t go down so easily.  Offensively they spread out four runs over a three inning stretch but failed to come through in the clutch.  The team left runners in scoring position three times today.  Ryan Howard was thrown out at the plate and Jimmy Rollins was caught stealing in the seventh inning.

Shane Victorino had a three hit game to lead the Phillies and Raul Ibanez added two more right behind him in the lineup.

Ironically enough, it was the two relief men the Phillies have been scouting that would shut it down in the late innings nailing down the 5-4 win for the Padres.  Mike Adams and Heath Bell pitched the eighth and ninth innings, respectively, needing only 25 pitches and struck out three Phillies hitters; two looking.

Out of the Phillies bullpen, Michael Stutes threw two scoreless innings for the Phillies and now has 38 strikeouts in 36.2 innings.  He would have been in line for another win had the Phillies pulled it out.  Chatting with him Friday during batting practice, he said, when mentioning his five wins, ‘Yeah, I guess I keep getting lucky.’  Works for me.

A look ahead and the Phillies are welcoming in the World Series Champs for three games and America’s Team for another three.  Do I really need to explain who they are?

Now a look back….

Continue reading Early Exit for Lee, Phillies Come Up Short

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Gameday: Padres (44-58) vs. Phillies (64-36)

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, July 25, 2011 01:00 PM Comments: 32


San Diego Padres (44-58) at Philadelphia Phillies (64-36)

Aaron Harang (8-2, 3.29 ERA) vs. Cliff Lee (9-6, 2.83 ERA)

Time: 1:05, Citizens Bank Park
TV: MY PHL 17
Weather: Scattered Storms, 88
Media:
Twitter and Facebook

Let’s sweep, shall we? While filling in on the radio last Friday (go to 973ESPN.com NOW to listen to me hosting from 1-3, thanks!) I called a Phillies sweep, and they’re about to make me look really smart. I felt coming in that the Padres were a completely overmatched team and that is apparently the case. The Phillies have beaten the Padres in every facet of this series. A sweep could put more distance between the Phils and their nearest competition, the Braves.

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Happy 7th Birthday Phillies Nation!

Posted by Brian Michael, Mon, July 25, 2011 08:25 AM Comments: 4

On this day seven years ago, Phillies Nation was born. I was jealous of my roommate’s obsession with Sons of Sam Horn and wanted a similar home for Phillies fans. Mostly I wanted one place where I could find all my Phillies information. But at least part of me was inspired by Eric Milton’s excellence.  Here is Phillies Nation’s first post:

Milton Perfect though 8 1/3

What a game! Supurb pitching by Eric Milton, and Doug Glanville won’t have anything funny to say about this nailbiter. Phils funnyman nearly cost his team the win, which brings the unoffical total of 5 defensive mistakes in centerfield in the past week.

It was nice to see the Phillies’ young stars, Ryan Madson and Chase Utley, perform well today. Utley had the Phils first two RBIs including a HR. Smoltz just got the save up in New York, that means the Fightins’ are still a half game out.

Apparently they didn’t have spell checkers back then…but how about those young stars, I hope they work out!

Everyone, thank you for all your support over the past seven years.  Go Phils!

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Halladay Finally Beats the Heat and the Padres

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sun, July 24, 2011 05:16 PM Comments: 20

You know Roy Halladay was chomping at the bit to get back on the mound after his last start in Chicago. He didn’t disappoint the fans, or himself,  in Sunday’s 5-3 win over the Padres, securing the Phillies 9th consecutive series victory.

In Halladay’s 12th victory of the season, the 64th of the year for the team, the heat was a non-factor, although the game-time temperature was 94 degrees. It has been well documented how Doc fares when the mercury rises above 90, but today he bucked that trend against a scrappy Padres team to go eight innings, after 91 pitches through the first five. All told, Halladay struck out eight batters, giving up eight hits and three runs (two earned), tossing 116 pitches. Charlie Manuel let him go deeper in the game after a few seven-pitch innings late, plus the fact that his last start was cut short after just 69 pitches in Chicago.

Early on, the Padres bats were aggressive early in the count, which seems to be a way to get at Halladay. In the first, the Padres scored one as Cameron Maybin singled on the game’s first pitch, stole a base, and then came home on a single by Chase Headley. San Diego would get two more in the fourth, and then Halladay settled in.

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Gameday: Padres (44-57) at Phillies (63-36)

Posted by Amanda Orr, Sun, July 24, 2011 12:45 PM Comments: 29

San Diego Padres (44-57) at Philadelphia Phillies (63-36)

Tim Stauffer, RHP (6-6, 2.83 ERA) vs. Roy Halladay, RHP (11-4, 2.57 ERA)

Time: 1:35, Citizens Bank Park
TV: MY PHL 17
Weather: Partly Cloudy, Chance of Rain, 92
Media:
Twitter and Facebook

OSWALT UPDATE:

Roy Oswalt threw a 40-pitch bullpen session earlier today and told the media he hasn’t felt this good in a long time. He’s set to go on a rehab assignment Wednesday and legitimately could be back in the Phillies rotation in less than two weeks. That’s basically adding a solid #2 starter to your rotation right at the trade deadline. We really only saw about one good month of Oswalt. Maybe this is the only move the Phillies need to make, is bringing him off the DL. That will move Kyle Kendrick to the bullpen, taking the place of one of the underachievers, making this pitching staff even more solid for the long haul.

TODAY’S GAME:

Temperatures over 100 degrees did not stop the Phillies from taking the first two games of the four game series against San Diego.  Like the weather, the Phillies are staying hot, and this is the kind of weather the Phillies like to hit in.

Continue reading Gameday: Padres (44-57) at Phillies (63-36)

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Phils Win Home Run Derby, 8-6

Posted by Corey Seidman, Sat, July 23, 2011 09:02 PM Comments: 10

Oh how the ball travels at Citizens Bank Park in the summer heat.

The Phillies came out on top, 8-6, in a game that featured six home runs by two teams that don’t hit a whole lot of them. Chase Utley went deep in the first inning to give the Phillies a 3-0 lead, which was eventually relinquished when Kyle Kendrick served up two gopher balls in the sixth inning. Cameron Maybin hit a line drive blast to left, and then Chase Headley added an opposite field solo shot two batters later.

Kendrick had pitched a strong (or typically lucky) five innings, but was ultimately chased in the sixth for Michael Stutes.

Stutes ended the sixth successfully, and almost escaped a no out, runner on third jam in the seventh. But Maybin again delivered a key blow, smashing a single that Jimmy Rollins dove to stop but couldn’t make a play on.

What followed was a questionable decision by Bud Black to bring in Chad Qualls. Sure, Qualls has had success this year (mostly ALL at spacious Petco Park,) but the significantly less hittable Luke Gregerson was loosening in the pen, too. I had seats in right field directly next to the pen and was surprised that Qualls got the call.

In came the mediocre, homer-prone righthander to face pinch-hitter Ryan Howard. Howard sat because he was 0-for-8 with eight strikeouts off Mat Latos in his career. On the first pitch, The Big Piece hit a low liner that somehow traveled 419 feet for a game-tying homer. Continue reading Phils Win Home Run Derby, 8-6

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Gameday: Padres (44-56) at Phillies (62-36)

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Sat, July 23, 2011 02:55 PM Comments: 69

San Diego Padres (44-55) at Philadelphia Phillies (61-36)

Mat Latos, RHP (5-10, 4.02 ERA) vs. Kyle Kendrick, RHP (5-4, 3.34 ERA)

Time: 4:10, Citizens Bank Park
TV: FOX
Weather: 94, Partly Cloudy
Media: Twitter and Facebook

The heat wave is coming to an end! It will only be 94 (with a heat index of 103) at game time tonight. As Charlie Manuel would say: “That’s hittin’ weather!” Frankly, I’m tired of living in an oven for the last few days.

Anyway, Kyle Kendrick will brave the heat tonight and try his best to continue his surprising success this year. Without looking at any peripherals, Kendrick has kept the Phillies in games for the most part — something that is ideal for a guy like Kendrick.

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In Defense Of Kyle Kendrick

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Sat, July 23, 2011 02:00 PM Comments: 19

I know what you’re thinking. “Defense” and “Kyle Kendrick” only belong in the same sentence if you’re talking about how defenseless he is when pitching, especially to Jason Giambi.

In fact, I’m sure most of you still wish that the prank by Charlie Manuel and Ruben Amaro telling Kendrick he’d been traded to Japan for “Kobayashi” was true.

Last Sunday, Kendrick pitched 7 innings of one-run ball and got the win. Sure, he walked three and didn’t record a strikeout, but he got the job done. That’s all you can ask for from a spot starter, and that’s all that he is. It doesn’t matter if the success is sustainable, and his peripherals are irrelevant. As long as he gets the job done, we can’t complain.

In 2010, he made 31 starts with the Phillies in which the team went 17-14. If you divide those 31 starts into categories of good (0-3 ER with more than 4.0 IP), meh (4-5 ER or 0-3 ER with less than 4.0 IP), and bad (6+ ER or 5 ER with less than 5.0 IP), Kendrick had “good” starts in over half (16) of them. Six of them were “bad”, and the remaining 9 were “meh.”

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