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Archive for April, 2012

David Herndon to DL

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Mon, April 30, 2012 11:33 PM Comments: 3

Will Herndon's absence create an opportunity for Diekman or Sanches? Photo (AP)

According to Todd Zolecki, David Herndon is headed to the DL with right elbow inflammation. Herndon has pitched to a career high 4.70 ERA but is also posting a career high in K/9 IP and low in BB/9 IP. At best, Herndon has been a reliable reliever whose peripherals (1.95 xFIP, .391 BABIP) indicate that luck has not been on his side. At worst, Herndon has been ineffective. No corresponding roster move has been announced.

My take: Herndon was showing flashes of effectiveness in some appearances but looked rocky in others. Jake Diekman (0.82 ERA in 11 IP, 17 Ks) has pitched his way into the conversation for a call-up but is a lefty. If the Phils are looking to replace Herndon with a similarly-handed pitcher, former Phil Brian Sanches (3.21 ERA in 14 IP, 12 Ks) has been pitching well for the Pigs. After a hot start, righty Phillippe Aumont is struggling (6.48 ERA in 8.1 IP, 13 Ks against 9 walks) and likely will not be considered to replace Herndon.

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Worley Impressive Again, Polly Comes Up Big Late

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, April 30, 2012 10:05 PM Comments: 15

Worley was solid once again. (AP)

The offense, somehow, saved the day.

After blowing a 4-0 lead, Placido Polanco’s two-run double in the eighth inning was the game winner as the Phillies split the 4 game series with the Cubs, winning 6-4 on Tuesday night.

BULLPEN BLOWS IT

-Antonio Bastardo was lights out last year and was the pleasant surprise of the 2011 roster. This year, he just hasn’t looked the same. He, along with Chad Qualls, allowed the Cubs to tie it in the eighth inning. Bryan LaHair’s 2-run home run wiped away a Vance Worley win.

-As @TheLollipopking said on twitter – “I know Qualls gave up the HR, but it’s a shame Bastardo has gone from being awesome last yr to a guy you can’t trust anymore.” Well put.

WORLEY STAYING STRONG

-Worley began the night thanking his right fielder for a strong defensive play. David DeJesus roped a ball off the wall that was picked up cleanly by Hunter Pence, who threw a strike to get DeJesus at second base. Except, he wasn’t out. The umpire just called it that way. So, Worley started with a mulligan. From there on, he retired the first 11 batters of the game.

-His trouble spots were the fourth and fifth, and seventh innings. In the fourth and fifth, he got out of jams with two runners on base. In the seventh, he loaded the bases with no outs, but got a little help from his defense as Placido Polanco turned a 6-3 double play. A run would score on that play and one batter later, Worley would get Reed Johnson to ground out to first. Crises averted.

-For the past two seasons, Vance Worley has been a K-looking machine. Heading into Monday night’s game against the Cubs, Worley had fanned 57% of his strikeout victims on called third strikes. This year, that number is at 67% (thanks Corey). On Monday, he fanned five Cubs, three of them looking.

Continue reading Worley Impressive Again, Polly Comes Up Big Late

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Lee DL Stint Will Continue; Howard Rehab Begins

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, April 30, 2012 07:36 PM Comments: 0

Cliff should be back soon.

-Cliff Lee is getting closer to a return, but it won’t happen on Friday. Lee was eligible to be activated from the disabled list at that time, however, the Phillies will play it safe and keep him there until he throws two bullpen sessions. Rich Dubee gave that news today, saying that Lee was progressing.

-Ryan Howard started his rehab program in Clearwater today and had some encouraging words to say on twitter.

Obviously good news that the Big Piece is getting closer.

-There was no update on Jim Thome and his balky back today. He was scheduled to take part in some BP and then reassess.

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Gameday: Cubs (8-14) vs. Phillies (10-12)

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, April 30, 2012 05:38 PM Comments: 5

Philadelphia Phillies (10-12) vs. Chicago Cubs (8-14)

Chris Volstad (0-3, 6.14) vs. Vance Worley (2-1, 2.16)

Time: 7:05 PM, Citizens Bank Park
TV: PHL 17
Weather: Overcast, 55
Media: Twitter and Facebook

INJURY UPDATE: Cliff Lee will NOT come off the disabled list on Friday, the first day he would have been eligible to do so. That doesnt mean he isn’t doing well; Rich Dubee says he’s improving. But they don’t want to rush it and he’ll have to throw a few bullpen sessions before they bring him back to the rotation…

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Offense, where art thou? It’s back to being ugly again – Charlie Manuel says plain and simple, they’re pressing. I think that’s pretty evident. It’s another different lineup this evening, as Pete Orr is at second base, Laynce Nix plays left field.

Will Jimmy Rollins bust out? He has looked downright awful. He’s getting on base at a .264 clip, which just won’t do. J-Roll is 4 for his last 40. We know when J-Roll goes, so go the Phillies.

They’ve absolutely torched Cubs starter Chris Volstad during his days with the Marlins. He’s 2-5 with a 5.88 ERA in 12 career starts against the Phillies, so it’s the perfect storm for the Phillies tonight. I’m going out on a limb tonight – 7 RUNS! Bring it to the bank. Bet the over. Phils drop a 7-spot this evening.

Vance Worley is responsible for holding it down on the mound tonight. He’s done that so far this year, posting a 2.16 ERA. It’s been tons of fun watching Worley pitch with swagger on the hill. Let’s hope that can continue tonight as he shuts up the critics who believed a sophomore slump was inevitable.

Lineup: Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Victorino CF, Pence RF, Wigginton 1B, Nix LF, Ruiz C, Orr 2B, Worley P.

Your gameday beer: Stella Artois

A cold Stella on a crisp night with a little baseball? Love it. Stella is a Belgian beer and the name is Latin for the word “star”. The Phillies could use some Stella’s tonight in their lineup. It’s been far too long since we’ve enjoyed one of their patented offensive tears. Enjoy it with a Chicken Caesar salad and a Phillies victory. You won’t be let down tonight – by either. – By Pat

GO PHILLIES

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One Day Free Fantasy Baseball Contest – $200 in cash prizes

Posted by Brian Michael, Mon, April 30, 2012 02:21 PM Comments: 1

If you haven’t heard yet, there’s a new way to play fantasy baseball that turns the season long grind into quick one night leagues. And the best part is that you can win cash every single day. You draft a team for one night and get paid out as soon as the games end that night. DraftStreet.com is one of the pioneers in this type of gaming and has put together a pretty cool promotion for us: a FREE one-day fantasy league with $200 in prizes exclusively for Phillies Nation fans.

This free contest will be salary-cap style drafting where everyone tries to assemble the best team out of the available players. You will have a $100,000 budget to build a team of 14 players consisting of the following: Catcher, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, 3 OF, 2 Utility, 2 SP, 1 RP, and 1 P. Each MLB player has been assigned a price based on their expected fantasy performance.

You can adjust your roster up until the contest starts on Friday May 4th at 7:05pm ET at which time your rosters will lock and the Live Scoreboard will be available. Only the games starting at 7:05pm ET or later on Friday will count towards your score. It’s a one day event – and if you’re good at Fantasy Baseball, you could make an easy 200 bucks!

Click here to sign up for free and register for the Phillies Nation $200 Fantasy Game on DraftStreet.com

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Dugan to Rehab Ankle in Clearwater

Posted by Jay Floyd, Mon, April 30, 2012 08:30 AM Comments: 4

Lakewood first baseman Kelly Dugan (pictured, left) has been sent to the Phillies’ spring traning home in Clearwater, FL to rehab his injured ankle.

The switch-hitting Dugan has been sidelined since the Class A BlueClaws’ game at Hagerstown on April 20th, when he stepped on first base awkwardly, while taking a throw on a ground out, and turned his left ankle.

According to Lakewood manager Mickey Morandini, there is no time frame for a return for Dugan, but the injury is not very serious.

“It’s basically a twisted ankle.  Once the swelling goes down and the pain goes away, he’ll resume some strengthening (exercises) and he’ll start running again,” Morandini stated.

Morandini added that Dugan spent some time in a protective boot, after suffering the injury, to limit the range of motion and to keep the swelling contained. Continue reading Dugan to Rehab Ankle in Clearwater

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Week In Review – Still Early, Rising Stars

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, April 29, 2012 09:01 PM Comments: 9

Looking back at the week and I feel optimistic.  The Phillies lost two games this week but the hit and run production is on the rise.  There are still frustrations with RISP that need to be addressed but Charlie Manuel is doing his best with lineup shake-ups to right the ship.

I’ve been preaching this all season and it still holds true; it is still very early in the season.  It’s hard to take a sample of whats to come for the season.  Roy Halladay is pitching very well and Shane Victorino is producing some power at the plate.  Injuries are holding back this team, but a full squad could be back sooner than you think.

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Injury Updates – The end of last week Cliff Lee went on the disabled list with a left oblique strain.  He joined Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, who both started the season on the DL.  We have been waiting what seems like forever for these two guys to get healthy and rumor is they both might be close to coming back.

Originally Lee was only expected to miss a couple starts, and is eligible to come off the DL May 4 but Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. is not sure so sure about it.  According to Matt Gelb, and MRI shows a Grade 1 oblique strain which could cause the lefty to miss more starts.  Time to step it up Kyle Kendrick. Continue reading Week In Review – Still Early, Rising Stars

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Garza Too Much, Phils Two-Hit

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, April 29, 2012 05:06 PM Comments: 31

The Phillies couldn't figure out Matt Garza today.

When a pitcher is hot, he is hot.  We have seen time and time again  Roy Halladay go lights out on opponents.  The same thing happened today against the Phillies in the form of Matt Garza.

Garza pitched seven innings of one hit ball against a struggling Phillies offense looking to finish April above .500.  With this 5-1 loss the Phillies are 10-12 with one more game to play in the opening month.

Tough HittingJimmy Rollins started the game off with a hit.  The Phillies didn’t get another base runner until the seventh (a Juan Pierre walk), and their second hit didn’t come until a Hunter Pence single in the ninth.

Ailing April – This will be the first April since 2007 the Phillies will open the season with a losing record in the opening month.  The Phillies are seventh in the NL in hitting and have the fourth best ERA.  Those numbers alone should lead to more wins. Continue reading Garza Too Much, Phils Two-Hit

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Gameday: Cubs (7-14) vs. Phillies (10-11)

Posted by Amanda Orr, Sun, April 29, 2012 12:39 PM Comments: 8

Philadelphia Phillies (10-11) vs. Chicago Cubs (7-14)

Kyle Kendrick (0-1, 9.39) vs. Matt Garza (1-1, 3.38)

Time: 1:35 PM, Citizens Bank Park
TV: PHL 17
Weather: Sunny, 65
Media: Twitter and Facebook

Joe Blanton led the Phillies to a 5-2 victory on Saturday. Also on Saturday, Carlos Ruiz had a big night, going 2-for-4 with a home run and 3 runs batted in. The Phillies hope to keep the momentum a they are looking to get back to the .500 mark today.

Continue reading Gameday: Cubs (7-14) vs. Phillies (10-11)

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Cloyd Proving Himself Ready for the Next Step

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, April 29, 2012 09:00 AM Comments: 0

Tyler Cloyd feels no heightened sense of urgency to climb the developmental ladder because of his age. The righty starter, who will turn 25-years-old on May 16th, has all but exceeded everyone’s expectations of his ceiling, clearly proving, with a very solid 2011 campaign and an exceptional first month of this season, that he can compete at the highest levels of the minor leagues.

An 18th round draft selection in 2008, Cloyd made his professional debut that year, posting a 7-4 record with a 3.91 ERA in 14 outings combined with the rookie level Gulf Coast League Phillies and short-season Williamsport. Since then, the Nebraska native has had winning records every season, while alternating between starting and relief duties.

Cloyd made a considerable impact last year, following up a season in which he sported an unimpressive 5.17 ERA in 37 combined games (5 starts) with Class A Advanced Clearwater and Double-A Reading to serve up a 9-4 record and a 2.77 ERA overall in 2011, splitting time with Clearwater and Reading once again.

Officially on the prospect map, heading into the 2012 season, Cloyd was called upon to fill in for suspended Triple-A hurler Dave Bush on opening day this season. He took that opportunity to shine, throwing 6 shutout innings, allowing no baserunners and striking out 8 batters.

In his three starts that followed, after returning to Double-A, Cloyd has been nearly as sharp, posting a 3-0 record with a 2.37 ERA and 13 strike outs in 19 innings. Even more remarkable is that Cloyd has yet to allow a walk this season.

Many minor leaguers would be considered to have aged themselves right out of prospect consideration by the age of 25, but that’s not something that bothers Cloyd. He keeps a focus on performance, regardless of the level he is assigned to.

“For me it’s just- I do what I can, where I’m at. I’m not in a big hurry to move. Whenever the Phillies want to move me, then that’s their decision to make,” Cloyd said in an exclusive interview. “For me, I try not to get too caught up into that. I do what I can, where I’m at, every five days when I go out on the field. I just do what I can and go out there and show them that I can do this. As far as me moving up, obviously, I want to get back up there and keep climbing the ladder, but when that is would be up to the Phillies.” Continue reading Cloyd Proving Himself Ready for the Next Step

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