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Phillies Jump on Pirates Miscues in 8-3 Win

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, June 25, 2012 10:01 PM | Comments: 45
Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

After an ugly Sunday doubleheader, the Phillies righted the ship, at least for one day. After getting good news that one of their leaders, Chase Utley, would return to the lineup this week, the Phillies opened up a four-game series with the Pirates with an 8-3 victory.

BLANTON SOMEWHERE IN BETWEEN

Jimmy is swinging a hot stick and Chase could be back soon. (AP).

-It wasn’t awful Joe Blanton, but it wasn’t great Joe Blanton, either. He did his best to piss off 43,000+ by keeping the Pirates well within striking distance, even with the Phillies scoring seven runs in the first four innings. It was that Blanton we will most certainly accept, the Blanton somewhere in between those two, but more toward the good end.

-Blanton again threw a ton of strikes. It’s been his M.O. this year, almost to a fault. He threw 114 pitches, 72 strikes on the evening, and walked just one batter. His line: Seven innings, seven hits, three runs (two earned), one walk, eight strikeouts.

-Jake Diekman came on and allowed a four-pitch walk, then settled in for a double play and strikeout in the eighth. They NEED Diekman to step up, someone in that pen has to.

-Chad Qualls came on in the ninth holding a five-run lead and did not relinquish it.

J-ROLL ON FIRE

-It’s unlikely we’ll ever see Jimmy Rollins approach the MVP season of 2007. Even still, he’s done a damn good impression of it since June. And really, he stepped it up before that. Go back to when Rollins and wife Johari had their baby. Since retuning from paternity leave on May 24 (as Kevin Cooney pointed out on twitter) he’s hitting .321 with seven homers and 19 RBIs (after his homer). He doubled in the first and tacked on a monster home run in the fourth inning, even showing a little Jimmy swagger in the process as he admired the shot.

-More Jimmy stats: Rollins has four homers in his last 5 games. Before that, he had 4 homers in first 67 games this season

-In the Phillies four-run first inning, they were aided by a cadre of mistakes on defense. The Pirates looked like the Bad News Bears committing three errors, two from right fielder Jose Tabata. All told, they put up four in the E-column on Monday night.

-Carlos Ruiz three hits and raised his average to .354. His OPS is now a loony .982. Vote for Chooch, seriously guys.

-Pirates pitching wasn’t very good, either. Jeff Karstens allowed 11 hits in five innings. Doug Slaten came in and nearly imploded in the seventh inning, loading the bases with nobody out. He would walk home a run then get out of the inning with three straight strikeouts.

NOTES

-Second baseman Mike Fontenot went down in a heap in the seventh inning. Fielding a grounder to his left, he twisted his ankle but did stay in the game.

-Chase Utley comes back this week. That’s enough to make the notes section.

Avatar of Pat Gallen

About Pat Gallen

Pat Gallen has written 1684 articles on Phillies Nation.

Pat is Editor-in-Chief of Phillies Nation. He also covers the Phils for 97.5 FM in Philly.

 
 
  • Posts: 0 Jeff Dowder

    I know you wrote this quickly Pat, but Rollins’ MVP season was 2007.

     
  • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

    Avatar of Pat Gallen

    Thanks for the catch Jeff.

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    winner winner chicken dinner

    Righted the ship. I get jokes

    if the other team makes four errors or their firstbaseman cant touch first base look out!

    Would like to say maybe some momentum but Sunday came after Thomes walk off on saturday.

    need to start winning some games. its a start/

     
  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    The double header took the wind out of me. I’ll jump back in with a sweep of the Pirates. I;m currently looking for ways to parlay Thome(cleveland needs him bad), Pierre, Vic and Polanco into a 25 or 40 roster worthy player(i’d add in some minor league guys as necessary).

     
  • Posts: 0 glutenous

    If anyone predicted that up to this point in the season, joe blanton would have 7 more wins than cliff lee, I commend them. Well done.

     
  • Posts: 0 Ryne Duren

    yo pat! give blanton a break man. nmo it was scary but he worked his way through it 7so 1BB not as bad as you make it out to be. any i can understand how you feel. we just want some easy wins. this one was about as easy as it’s gonna get. on another note. rollins is certifably hot! however did you notice him lollygagging down the line then kickit in gear when the 1st baseman bobbled the ball. and people ask me why i refer to him as j-bag! as hot as he is i still wish we didn’t sign him for three years.

     
    • Posts: 2069 Brooks

      Avatar of Brooks

      Ryne – JB pitched a fine game for him however, we all know that sometime soon, he will get tatooed again, early and often. And when he does, Cholly will leave him in until there are 7 runs. We just know this is going to happen so its tough to give a shout out to Cheeseburger Joe.

      @glute – and Lee just continues to pitch worse and worse each outing.

       
      • Posts: 0 Ryne Duren

        yea brooks i know! thanks for reminding me.lol for a minute there i must have been daydreaming thinking he would continue. nice to think though brooksie

         
  • Posts: 542 Bruce

    Avatar of Bruce

    As J-Roll goes, so goes the Phillies. I love the guy and he is having great month of June. I don’t have the statistics but Phillies play-by-play broadcaster, Tom McCarthy stated that Rollins has been the best hitter on the team this season when playing at home. Yet because of team’s struggles with injuries, inept bullpen and inconsistent starts in rotation, their home record continues to be deplorable (16-22).

    I’m glad to see Blanton bounced back again with another quality start. Amazing that he has more wins (7) than Lee and Halladay combined. I have supported Blanton (unlike some here) and will continue to do so. The Phillies need him to do well. Quality starts (3 runs in 6 innings)is what the team is asking for from their number.

    The team and the fans are anxiously awaiting the arrival of Utley to enter into the lineup as their number 3 hitter this week. As Charlie Manuel have said, the team have not had a true no.3 and 4 hitters in the lineup all season and a huge part of the reason for their struggles. We can only hope that Howard will join the team before time runs out on the team’s chances of making the playoffs.

     
    • Posts: 0 Jeff Dowder

      Bruce – Rollins is definitely having a great month, but the Phillies are 8-15 in June. I don’t think “As J-Roll goes, so goes the Phillies” really holds up in this case.

       
  • Posts: 0 glutenous

    That he has, hopefully part of it is in his head and when he gets that elusive first W he will start rolling.

     
  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    @Bruce – I understand your sentiments as they have been uttered by Mr. Gallen, myself and others in the past. But, its apparent that Jimmy’s bat, along with the continued hitting of Chooch & Pierre (who are both having outstanding seasons) is just not enough for the Phils to win consistently. The Phils are also 3-7 in one run games this month and for the year an abominable record when going into late innings with a deficit – the magic that captured the hearts of this city is nowhere to be found. Where are the late inning rallies, the come from behind victories, the improbable walk off wins (thanks Jim for that reminder!)?

    Unfortunately, its a sad combination of the lack of offense, defense and pitching that has placed them firmly in the second tier (I see they are a percentage point ahead of the Fish) of their division.

    So, think about it – with the return of Chase on Wednesday – what will that do for the Phils? Better defense, we hope a better offense but what about the porous, inconsistent pitching?

    It’s time to take a firm grip on reality my friends, the Phils woes are not going to be fixed in a day or a month. Not by one man’s return nor by 2 men. This problem has to be solved from atop and it looks clearer and clearer that the problems will not be resolved this year.

     
    • Posts: 875 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      ” an abominable record when going into late innings with a deficit”

      This is talked about a lot, so I just want to put it in some context:

      The Phillies are 0-29 when heading into the 8th. NL teams overall have a .065 winning percentage in those situations, so if the Phils came from behind an average number, they would have won 2 of those 29 games.

      To summarize the late innings, when trailing heading into the…

      7th: Phils are 4-25; on average they should be 3-26 (1 win better)
      8th: Phils are 0-29; on average they should be 2-27 (2 wins worse)
      9th: Phils are 0-31; on average they should be 1-30 (1 win worse)

      So two things:
      1) we were spoiled from years of not just excellent play, but a combination of very good offenses and good bullpens, which led to more come from behind wins than “come from ahead losses”

      2) the difference is on the order 1-3 wins, not 5-10, although of course 1-3 wins could still be the difference between making and missing the playoffs.

       
      • Posts: 2069 Brooks

        Avatar of Brooks

        The numbers you raised mean nothing. “Should be…” what?
        The first point you raised is everything in a nutshell. We have gotten quite used to some gritty, gutsy baseball in the past 6 years and to have that style of play drop off the face of the Phils so sudden like is just hard to swallow. The reasons for the drop off are even more difficult to take. Injuries are to be expected, poor glove work, a collapse by key relievers and some of the starers are head scratching at best.

         
      • Posts: 875 schmenkman

        Avatar of schmenkman

        I see that could have been clearer.

        We know that teams come back sometimes after being down in the late innings. The question is how often should we expect a team to do that?

        Trailing heading to the 7th:

        When a team is trailing heading into the 7th inning this year, they’ve won that game 10.7% of the time. The Phillies have trailed heading into the 7th inning 29 times this year. If they were the average NL team in coming back in that situation, they would have come back and won 3 of those 29. They actually came back and won 4 of the 29, so in terms of trailing heading into the 7th, they’re doing a little better than average.

        Trailing heading to the 8th:

        Teams that are trailing going into the 8th have come back to win 6.8% of the time. The Phillies had 29 games where they trailed going to the 8th, so if they came back as much as the average team, they would be 2-27 in those 29 games, instead of 0-29.

         
      • Posts: 5229 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        You know, I’m a numbers guy normally, but in this case, I think it’s more about perception than cold numbers. If the fans are leaving in the 7th inning because the team is down and they don’t believe they can come back, the only way to change that is to come back several times, – many times better than “league average”. I think you have to give your fan base confidence that if they hang, it can happen.

        I can tell my child that I can’t afford to give him/her what the kid next door gets. And I can tell them it’s okay because most people ( league average) can’t afford it. That isn’t going to make my kid feel any better. They want to believe. Sometimes it’s about perception, not numbers. If you want to say we’re spoiled, I won’t argue it. If you want to say the league in general is down in one category or another, and so are the Phils, I won’t argue that either. It still doesn’t make what we are seeing from our well paid team hurt less. And some of us are paying the freight.

        All that said- 55-32 from here on out is not out of the realm of possibility. I still believe, and some trending numbers agree. ( thanks for the Cohen article last week, I did see it.)

         
      • Posts: 875 schmenkman

        Avatar of schmenkman

        Lefty, completely agree that it’s about perception. I was just trying to put that perception in the context of how often teams actually come back.

         
  • Posts: 0 TheDipsy

    The magic is gone because the players are gone. If Chase can come back and play OK thats gonna really help the fung schway (sp) of the team. The team is gonna look like the old team a little and a little bit of the excitement will come back. More so when Ryan comes back. Jimmy is playing great.

    I don’t think anyone who hasn’t played organized sports, especially baseball, can fathom what its like for their teammates to lose two guys like Howard and Utley. The other players are, yeah, really unhappy about it. They are professionals and their job is to play. But its not the same. The confidence is not there. The constant grinding and beating down. You are never supposed to use injuries as an excuse…….I get it, but it has had a really horrible effect on the team….and on the defense more than the offense!

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 Willie

    With an on base percentage like .982 how can anyone say that Chooch doens’t deserve to be in his first All Star game. Great to see former BlueClaws in the majors doing so well.

     
    • Posts: 875 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      You mean on base plus slugging (OPS), but in any case I agree. I hope everyone is voting their 25 times from as many e-mail addresses as they can get access to. He will obviously be chosen as a reserve, but it would be great to see him as the starter rather than a 7th inning replacement.

      Deadline is midnight Thursday (6/28).

       
  • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

    Avatar of Pat Gallen

    Blanton was teetering on the edge there. The Phillies gave him 7 and it was still a little too close for comfort at times. That’s all I meant. He was good, but not great. We should want more out of our pitchers than 7inn/3 runs.

     
    • Posts: 0 George

      Actually, it was seven innings and two runs; the third only scored because of poor defense. Maybe we should want more from our pitchers, but please remember that Blanton is number four in the rotation (and when Halladay returns, he’ll be number five) and I think it’s unfair to expect more from any number four starter.

      I do wish he didn’t throw so many gopher balls, though.

       
      • Posts: 0 Dave P

        I agree with george. Even if all 3 runs were earned, 3 runs in 7 innings equates to a 3.86 ERA, certainly a respectable number from a back of the rotation starter.

         
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    For the season . . .

    Fangraphs lists Rollins as the #5 SS in WAR rankings (Elvis Andrus, Jed Lawrie, Asdrubal Cabrera, Starlin Castro)

    if you go just on their fielding – he’s #12

    if you go by wOBA – he’s #8

    For a declining, old SS, he’s still better than most

     
  • Posts: 993 betasigmadeltashag

    Avatar of betasigmadeltashag

    Really you expect more then 7 innings three runs even if all three were earned, which they were not last night. If Joe pitched three run ball and seven innings everytime out how would you not be happy with that out a four or five starter, you really think he should pitch shut out ball everytime out. This game was never in question, nice to see them add on throughout the game. They do have to put a real winning streak together, like running of 8 or 10 or something like that.

     
  • Posts: 2993 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Hey Dipsy – It’s feng shui

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&gs_mss=feng++shui+and+bas&pq=the+effect+of+feng+shui+on+the+phillies&cp=23&gs_id=2h&xhr=t&aq=f&aqi=&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&biw=1024&bih=673&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=hcfpT-34He7F0AG9oLClDQ&q=feng%20shui%20and%20baseball&orq=feng++shui+and+baseball#um=1&hl=en&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=feng+shui+phillies&oq=feng+shui+phillies&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&gs_l=img.3…49199.60785.0.61624.18.13.0.5.2.0.281.1975.3j6j4.13.0…0.0.2-XIBApaf0E&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=dffee7b5e5a431ac&biw=1024&bih=673

     
  • Posts: 0 TheDipsy

    That Chuck. Maybe “zeitgeist” may have been a better term.

    The Dipsy

     
    • Posts: 2993 Chuck A.

      Avatar of Chuck A.

      Ha! Yeah… good one! Anyway, I was just being a jitbag of sorts..

      Go Phillies.

       
      • Posts: 0 Ryne Duren

        hey chuck no way you are that! that’s why i call jimmy j-bag cause he is and always will be! even though he’s on fire and i’m glad for that. he still managed to trot to first mon a play he woul;d have beat out if he hustled! that’ why he’ll always be j-bag. and i have no effin clue as to what you and the dipsy are taking about but it sounded really funny i had to bring it up. any way whatever it means i’m with you guys lol

         
      • Posts: 2069 Brooks

        Avatar of Brooks

        Jitbag? good one, I haven’t heard that term in probaly 15-20 years

         
    • Posts: 0 George

      Feng shui might actually be the correct word, and might also be the reason the Phils are doing badly. It’s quite possible that at least one player has been standing too close to the toilet, and the team’s playoff hopes are being sucked down the crapper.

       
  • Posts: 875 schmenkman

    Avatar of schmenkman

    Rollins’ next extra base hit will tie him with Ed Delahanty for 2nd on the Phillies’ all-time list.

     
    • Posts: 875 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      Not bad for a good fielding shortstop; later this year or early 2013 he’ll also pass Delahanty for 2nd in total bases. Schmidt is well out of reach in both categories.

       
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Victorino said ” ya know” 731 times in his interview on 97.5 FM today

     
    • Posts: 61 GM

      Avatar of GM

      Why such a short interview?

       
    • Posts: 0 Ryne Duren

      Don if you notice which you probably have. every conversation vic has usually starts with ” like i said ya know” ya know? i’d love to have a recorder recording a conversation between him and cholly! cholly…that was a good hit you got there you’re first atbat vic that’s what i think! Vic… well like i said skip ya know? cholly… no i didn’t know! and what did you say? Vic… like i said skip ya know? ya know? cholly… no i didn’t think about that! but it’s good real good!

       
      • Posts: 0 Ryne Duren

        i can’t help it man. i know you shouldn’t laugh at your own humor but i was p-ing myself with that vision! ya know?

         
      • Posts: 2993 Chuck A.

        Avatar of Chuck A.

        I just found out recently that Shane Victorino is an Eagle Scout. Who would have ever thought???…

         
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    When you have to make posts justifying a player. Thats an issue. Just saying.

    But back to smiling happy faces time.

    The Phillies are now only 8 games out of first. And no longer in last place. They are .001 ahead of the Marlins so thats second to last. As Charlie Sheen would say. Winning!

    Also looking at the 3 teams ahead of the Phillies. The Mets are really not even a factor.
    What happened to the Braves last year will linger. Especialy in the second half of the year. And the Senators have very real exploitable issues and I still believe 2013 is their year not 2012.
    Do I think the Phillies can mount some type of a come back? I dunno will take some changes.
    Its possible though.
    Some of you think this is a great division. it is not in 2012. And that can be taken advantage of. Maybe.
    I am holding onto some hope.

    BTW those trades that would make some of you guys cry. You know the sacred cows.
    Those deals could help the phils be better this year as immediately as they happened. Even if they got used balls and a wiffle bat in return.

    Go phils
    win tonight and its a streak

     
    • Posts: 875 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      The East is not a great division, and it doesn’t have any great teams. It’s just the best division of the 3 in the NL, and by a pretty wide margin.

       
  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    I dont know Andrew – the Phils have a few things going against them tonight:
    1) they scored more than 5 runs
    2) they are playing the Pirates
    3) I’m going – my record is a dismal 4-12 in games I have attended, whether at CBP or DC or Camden Yards

    Point is, I would not be looking for any kind of streak coming up.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    I for one, can’t wait for the sacred cows. and I’m assuming the remark about “justifying a player” was directed towards me point out where Rollins ranks among SS ?….. I didn’t really “have to” do that, I just thought that for a guy that sucks so bad, he’s really not so bad

    Don M Wheeler

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    Donald it isnt all about the numbers or even him individualy.
    And with his glove if he hit 7th or 8th he may even be worth 60-75% of his current contract.
    I dont think he sucks at all.
    I think we have a team that thinks he is a leadoff hitter and will be for 3 more years.
    Its more of a team thing.

    If I manage this team when Utley is back he is penciled in 7th in the line up maybe 8th.
    Let him get his legs ( pun intended)
    But that wont happen here.
    I also thnk when Howard is back. Pinch hitting for him late in a game vs a lefty is a good strategy. If you wanted to win a game ( see 3 pitch Ks to Arthur Rhodes in last years playoffs)

    I dont hate the team or any of the players.
    I thnk the team and management are misguided and hung up on players that were in their prime 5 years ago.

    I do still thnk this division is bad enough and that when the Senators come back to life there is a chance. To win the division and make the playoffs.

    But make no mistake.
    Just like 2010 and 2011

    A team with Rollins hitting first and Utley and Howard hitting 3 and 4. Has no chance in the playoffs. When they face a good pitching staff in the playoffs they fold up tent.

     
    • Posts: 875 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      Are you ignoring the 2011 NLDS on purpose, or have you blocked it out already?

       
      • Posts: 0 Don M

        He blocks things out besides the 3-0 line drive to Lance Berkman…

         
 
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