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Wheeler Shuts Down Phillies as Mets Win 5-Game Series Opener

Posted by Pat Gallen, Thu, May 29, 2014 10:04 PM | Comments: 23
2014 Game Recaps, Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

Zack Wheeler had his way with the Phillies and led the New York Mets to a win in the series opener, 4-1.

Buchanan vs. Wheeler

-David Buchanan was OK. He dealt with trouble most of the evening, but kept the Phillies within striking distance. Over 6 2/3, Buchanan allowed four runs, three of them earned, while walking two and striking out two. For a call-up, fifth starter, you can’t ask for much more.

-Zack Wheeler was much better. He did not walk a batter and struck out nine Phillies over 6 1/3 innings. The only damage inflicted was off the batt of Marlon Byrd. Other than that, there’s certainly a reason why he’s highly thought of. Wheeler hit 94-96 with his fastball and even K’d Chase Utley looking with a sick, 90 mph, 3-2 slider. With Matt Harvey and Wheeler, plus Noah Syndergaard in the minors, the Mets rotation could be deadly in time.

The Runs

Not much else went on in this game. Chris Young’s 4th homer of the year gave the Mets all they needed as the Phillies didn’t put up much of a fight against Wheeler.

-Marlon Byrd went opposite field on his 7th homer of the season in the 7th inning. Playing the on pace game with Marlon: .284 avg, 28 HR, 98 RBI, 51 doubles. You’d sign up for those final numbers.

Cesar or Not?

-Cesar Hernandez committed another error at third base and also made a boneheaded play by throwing to second base when he could have stepped on third base in the 5th inning. I can tell you this: the Phillies are probably itching to see if Maikel Franco is ready for prime time. It could happen soon. He’s just a better player than Hernandez, can actually play third base, and allows for the Phillies to not rush Cody Asche back. Asche hasn’t yet restarted baseball activities yet. And this is no knock on Hernandez who could be a valuable utility player.

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 Andrew from waldorf

    Down 50

    Really need a strong showing tomorrow!

     
  • Posts: 0 Guest

    So how many times after the Phillies have a great win and at the post game talk to the player of the game we get this. So is this the type of win that gets this team on a roll? Answer from player – oh yea. I think so. We just got to keep this up and good things will happen. Fast forward to the next game and the Phillies lay an egg. Maybe Murphy should ask then are they going to suck tomorrow and then they might win.

     
    • Posts: 0 schmenkman

      Yeah, it’s a dumb, lazy, filler question. Most players erroneously believe in momentum, like most fans do, and even if they didn’t, they tend to try and stay positive, so of course they’ll say that.

      “Momentum? Momentum is the next day’s starting pitcher.” – Earl Weaver

       
      • Posts: 0 Chuck A.

        I remember that quote well.

         
      • Posts: 5223 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        Love that quote

         
      • Posts: 0 crow

        T.V. is a blunt instrument for making judgments about pitchers, but Wheeler’s pitches looked awfully good.

         
  • Posts: 0 wbramh

    Pat – Re: “the Phillies are probably itching to see if Maikel Franco is ready for prime time.”

    Perhaps everyone but Ruben since he has already declared Franco not even close to ready for the bigs.

    If that’s true, and based on what we saw last night at 3rd versus the Mets, Franco must be some guy off the street who has never played baseball.

     
    • Posts: 5223 Lefty

      Avatar of Lefty

      I hear that “hands of stone” WIgginton is available.

       
    • Posts: 0 schmenkman

      To be fair I don’t think Amaro said Franco wouldn’t be better than Hernandez.

      The organization’s two most valuable assets right now are Crawford and Franco. And rushing Franco up to fill a short-term need, for a team that (chances are) isn’t going anywhere, and possibly setting him up for failure, is understandably something they’d like to avoid.

      It would also start the clock on his MLB service time sooner, which would mean the Phillies could get one less year at or near the minimum before he becomes eligible for arbitration and later free agency.

       
      • Posts: 0 Hogey's Role

        To be honest all this service time crap for a player is a joke, all these teams with multi million dollar payrolls want to save a few million on a player for one year, if I’m that player I can’t wait to leave town after that, or really fleece the pockets of that team…. That’s ridiculous, if the kid in question is ready to play let him play…

        Now down to Franco, idk if he is ready or not, and I wouldn’t rely on amaro’s word, but I’d hate to see what happened to dom brown happen to him, where he got yanked back and forth for years…

         
      • Posts: 5223 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        Gotta admit that “service clock” thing is a pet peeve of mine too. I’m not saying that Franco is ready, (how the hell would I know) but just in general for all players, IMO it’s a ridiculous reason to hold a kid that is ready back. Six years down the road, you may not even want to keep the kid. Maybe he’s not as good as projected, or maybe he’s just a pain in the ass and not a good fit.

        And if he is that good, you won’t wait six years to extend him anyway.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        Hogey and Lefty, couldn’t agree more. But I think the reality is that, all else being equal, if a team can hold on to a player an extra full season in the prime of their career, by simply waiting a month or two at the start, they’ll do it.

         
      • Posts: 0 wbramh

        So tacitly at least, by keeping Franco on the farm to save money down the road, Amaro is admitting that his current team is a loser (despite claims to the contrary). Instead, he’s playing (and paying) 4 or 5 guys at the major league level who actually belong in double A ball.
        Interesting.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        wb, no one (including me) said that they are doing keeping him in the minors for financial reasons.

        I was only pointing one one consequence of bringing him now vs. later in the summer.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        *that they are keeping him…

         
      • Posts: 5223 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        Schmenkman, I understand the reality, you are right. But I just look at guys like Longoria,Trout-all the really good ones- these guys never get to six years- so why wait?

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        Well, we don’t know how good Franco is yet, though he almost certainly won’t be anywhere near as good as either of those two.

        But I think for the large majority of players, many of whom you may not (or may) want to extend, having the extra year of flexibility and lower cost matters to a team.

         
      • Posts: 0 Hogey's Role

        I’m not saying anything against anyone here, but I think that baseball in general needs to be rid of that service time clock issue… Two of the better prospects this year, polanco of Pittsburgh and taveras of St. Louis are being held down for that sole purpose to gain an extra year of team control, and that isn’t right, it’s not fair to the player….

        And someone correct me if I am wrong but isn’t there some sort of mlb pension that you get based off of your service time when you retire??? So really you’re cheating these guys out of that….

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        I don’t know that it’s not fair. It was negotiated as part of the same CBA that grants players free agency after six years, and through which Polanco and Taveras will likely earn many millions at that point (and even before then, in arbitration).

        I suppose the entire system could be based on a player’s age (for example) instead of service time, or time since signing, but I haven’t thought it through enough to see how alternative schemes would work, and whether other unforeseen consequences and gaming of the system would crop up.

         
      • Posts: 0 George

        I don’t know about Polanco’s situation, but Taveras has had numerous injuries holding him back, and St Louis has numerous supposedly high ceiling outfield prospects, which are also holding him back.

        In the case of Franco, I tend to believe he’s not quite ready. He hit well in May, but lately his numbers have slipped again. I also don’t recall any statement about how far he is from being ready, but only that he’s not ready. Much of what Amaro says is open to interpretation, but he’s stuck his foot in his mouth enough times that many fans always assume the extreme even when he doesn’t say the extreme.

         
      • Posts: 0 wbramh

        Schmenk – Re: “I was only pointing one one consequence (money clock) of bringing him now vs. later in the summer.”

        My point is, whether it’s to save money or they honestly believe Franco is way behind their horrible infield subs or some combination the two, this is the same team that has had no problem filling spots Michael Martinez, the Nix boys, Galvis, Hernandez, JMJ’s millions and Michael Young – not to mention pissing away another $12 mil on Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez – and that could have been a lot worse.

        So by any measure, money or talent, Franco must be pure minor league in management’s eyes. Why else would they promote or negotiate for players who clearly stink. If management actually believes Franco’s better than Galvis (he of the .050 batting average) or better than the light-hitting utility 2nd baseman (Hernandez) they plunked down on 3rd, than let Franco face major league pitching (as they have with others) and learn to play up to the next level. I’m guessing here, but I believe young Franco would have had enough sense to force out that runner heading to 3rd. If I’m wrong, this team is in deeper doo-doo than I thought.

        I know we’ve gone around on this before, but I stick to my beliefs that good players (like people good at anything) play up to their level of competition and that flaws are more readily and rapidly fixed in the process, even if it means a temporary demotion (ie: Mantle’s stint in KC). IMO, a player who bounces back and forth between levels (ie: Galvis, Brown, etc) is a guy who shouldn’t be in a major league starting lineup.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        Ok wb, we’ll have to agree to disagree.

         
  • Posts: 0 Ken Bland

    David Buchannan has now thrown just under 200 pitches in his Phillie career start ,and has been swung on and missed either 5 or 6 times.

    Organizational depth. A Ruben Amaro specialty.

    That sounds a little more critical of Buchannan than I intend it to be, but I don’t now that he’ll do much better in his next couple starts.

    The lack of organizational pitching can only increase the chances of reupping with Kyle Kendrick, who Ruben seems to have a history of overpaying, let alone when he’s a free agent.

    Also, out of about 100 pro sports teams in North America, there were a lot of winners last night. This 2 bil price tag attached to the Clippers seems very likely to sky the price of pro sports teams. Not necessarily across the board, mind you. The lousy performers in lousy markets don’t figure to go along for a ride, but good markets, attractive franchises oughta sky.
    Considering the market, and overall state of the franchise, I figure the Phils are a beneficiary. Out of the many that went up overnight, maybe 1 or 2 try to sell high. And 2 bil for the Clips is higher than JDS Uniphase at 150 a share. Not many days have to have gone by since Ruly Carp got out where he regretted it. Sure, franchises have skied some before (it’s 30 years since the Carpenters ran things), but if you connect the dots from Clipperland, David Montgomery made a fortune overnight. And it could have been Ruly. Not without 30 more years of aggravation, but waking up 7 figures times a lot following a night’s sleep is a cool thing.

     
 
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