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Phillies Use Homeruns, Blanton to Beat Twins 6-1

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Thu, June 14, 2012 11:10 PM Comments: 28

Tater time! Thome hits his second home run in three games.

Ah so will the real Joe Blanton please stand up.

Blanton finally shook off the rust and had himself a game tonight.  The Phillies were looking to win their second game in a row for the first time in awhile and were looking to Blanton to lead them in the right direction.  Well, it worked.  The big, sometimes forgotten, righty pitched a complete game, struck out seven and allowed only one run.  Wait, what?

Summertime! – Jimmy Rollins went 3 for 5 tonight and is now hitting .317 in the month of June.  With his performance tonight, J-Roll is hitting .257 for the season and starting to produce from the top spot.

Did someone order Taters? - Jim Thome went deep again tonight, his third home run of the season and second in three games.  This is great for Thome and the Phillies.  Thome is finally getting comfortable at the plate and the Phillies are getting some pop from the clean up spot in the lineup.  I just hope Charlie doesn’t lean on the old boy for too much as the year moves on.  Two homers in three games will not be the standard for Thome.

Continue reading Phillies Use Homeruns, Blanton to Beat Twins 6-1


Gameday: Phillies (30-34) at Twins (25-36)

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Thu, June 14, 2012 06:44 PM Comments: 18

Philadelphia Phillies (30-34)
vs. Minnesota Twins (25-36)

Joe Blanton (5-6, 5.40) vs. Scott Diamond (5-1, 1.61)

Time: 8:10, Target Field
TV: WB 17
Weather: Thunderstorms, 80
Media: Twitter and Facebook

The Phillies will be trying to win back-to-back games for the first time since May 30 and June 1.  Overall they have lost nine of their last 11 games.  Before last night, the last game they won was a Joe Blanton start.

Blanton, surprisingly, has had some really good starts for the Phillies this season.  The other side of that is that he has allowed at least five runs in his last five starts.  So the question is which Joe Blanton will we see tonight.

Blanton and the Phillies will be facing Scott Diamond, who has not lost an inter league game he’s started in his young career.  He has never faced Philadelphia.  Diamond, a former Rule 5 guy, has a 7:1 strikeouts to walks ratio and has four starts where he went at least six innings without allowing a run.

The key is for Blanton to settle in and pitch a smart game.  He has given up entirely too many home runs this season.  While he has only issued 12 walks in 75 innings, he has given up 89 hits including 13 home runs.

Lineup: Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Pence RF, Thome DH, Victorino CF, Ruiz C, Wigginton 1B, Mayberry LF, Martinez 2B

GAMEDAY BEER: Flying Dog Dogtoberfest

Perhaps it’s the rich amber color, the smooth and sweet taste, or the Hunter S. Thompson quote on the label, but something about this beer really does it for me. It’s been one of my absolute favorites since the first time I had it. It has a complex taste, with elements of sweet and bitter, but also goes down incredibly smooth, without being too abrasive to the palette. Despite the name drawing inferences to Autumn, the Dogtoberfest is actually a perfect summertime beer. Have it with some traditionally grilled food. -By Ryan

Go Phillies!


Solo Homers Not Enough, Phils Lose In Extras

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sat, June 09, 2012 09:34 PM Comments: 22

The Phillies one game win streak was short lived as the Orioles won their eighth straight extra inning game with an Adam Jones homer in the bottom of the 12th inning.

Behind the solo efforts from Jimmy Rollins, Jim Thome and Hector Luna the Phillies couldn’t put together enough run scoring chances to put the Orioles away.

Vance Worley suffered from unearned run syndrome today allowing three runs, one earned, in six innings.  Worley struck out five while only walking one and seems to be getting stronger since coming off the DL.

Hunter Pence had his first four hit game in a Phillies uniform going 4 for 5 with four singles.  Juan Pierre, Thome and Luna added two hits each for the Phillies.

This was a frustrating game to watch.  A 6-4 loss in 12 innings is not how I thought this game would end.  The Phillies committed three errors in the fourth inning and I, as a fan, never quite recovered.  B.J. Rosenberg added the final nail giving up the home run to Jones to end the game.

Sorry for the short recap.  It’s a tough loss. Especially with a team that is now seven games back in the NL East.  Cliff Lee is on the mound tomorrow.

Here are some photos Brian took from the game and around Baltimore:


Gameday: Phillies (29-31) at Orioles (32-26)

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sat, June 09, 2012 03:00 PM Comments: 20

Philadelphia Phillies (29-31) vs. Baltimore Orioles (32-26)

Vance Worley (3-2, 3.38) vs.  Tommy Hunter (2-3, 5.59)

Time: 4:05, Oriole Park at Camden Yards
Weather: Sunny and hot, 92
Media: Twitter and Facebook

The Phillies erupted last night for 12 hits and nine runs last night against Orioles pitching.  They will be facing facing righty Tommy Hunter today.  Hunter started the season with the Orioles before being sent down to Triple-A Norfolk to work on some things. If the Phillies get on him early, it will force the Baltimore bullpen to once again put some long work in.

Vance Worley is making his second start since coming back from the DL.  He gave up three runs in four innings last week against the Dodgers.  Worley already has two losses this season.  He only had three all of last year.

Shane Victorino has five hits in his last three games including two home runs.  The Phillies will need similar offensive output from their center fielder to keep this momentum moving forward.

Lineup: Rollins SS, Pierre LF, Pence RF, Thome DH, Victorino CF, Ruiz C, Wigginton 3B, Mayberry 1B, Fontenot 2B

Your Gameday Beer: Tonight’s featured brew is Rogue Northwestern Ale, an India Red Ale from Oregon.  With all the rain the Delaware Valley has been experiencing, it’s starting to feel like we live up there.  This beer was recommended by one of our loyal readers, Chris, who considers it an A+ beer.  Have it with some fresh fish or other local seafood.


Victorino, Offense Lead the Way for Blanton

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Fri, June 08, 2012 10:21 PM Comments: 22

Richie Ashburn Award: Shane Victorino

Joe Blanton made it work with a little help from his friends.

The Phillies have finally snapped their losing streak.  After losing six in a row, the Phillies pulled out a win against the Baltimore Orioles 9-6.  Joe Blanton started for the Phils and muscled his way into the seventh inning after the offense gave him a 7-0 lead after the second inning.

Bailing out Blanton –

The offense helped out starter Blanton staking him to a huge lead early in the ball game.  This gave Charlie Manuel the option to let his righty take it as far as he could before calling on the bullpen.  At 115 pitches and two outs into the seventh the call was made.  Blanton struck out seven, allowed five runs and gave up another home run.  His ERA is still well above five but he does have five wins.  For now, I will take it.

Continue reading Victorino, Offense Lead the Way for Blanton


Week In Review – Halladay, Utley, Hamels

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, June 03, 2012 09:56 PM Comments: 54

We find ourselves at the end of another mediocre week from the Phillies.  The Phillies took two of three from the Mets before giving up two of three to the Marlins.  Lucky for us, mediocre baseball seems the slogan of the National League East so the Phillies are still not that far off.


The Good, the bad, the ugly (Wild Thing)

Chase Utley is on the move and he is heading south to Clearwater.  He will start some extended Spring Training games and eventually work himself into some rehab games.  Good news with this is that last season Utley was back in the Phillies line up just 16 days after beginning extended Spring Training.

Roy Halladay is a machine, yeah?  No matter what he goes out every fifth day and pitches, right?  Halladay is not a machine, he is man.  His latissimus dorsi was happy to point out this fact during his last start.  The Grade 1/2 strain will have him out 6-8 weeks.

Mitch Williams decided to open his mouth (surprise surprise) and chime in about Cole Hamels‘ upcoming contract bonanza which will be his free agency coming out party.  His opinion doesn’t surprise me at all, but I hope he is wrong.


Week In Review – No Brooms, Galvis is My Homeboy

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, May 27, 2012 09:02 PM Comments: 5

Yup, these are our Philadelphia Phillies.  A constant up and down roller coaster peeking about the .500 line before dropping back down.  Win streaks of five games are continuously overshadowed by losing streaks of three and four.  At one point this season the Phillies were 0-8 when Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee pitched.


The Phillies haven’t had much to get excited about this season.   The starting pitching has been sketchy and the offense just doesn’t like to show up sometimes.  A couple of bright spots for the team has been the output from rookie Freddy Galvis.  He was brought in to fill the gap at second base for Chase Utley defensively.  No one thought it would be his bat we would be talking about come May.

Also, Placido Polanco has seemed to turn things around and is hitting a lot better.  He may not be the .300 guy we are used to but he can definitely help this team out.


Don’t forget about the future of the Phillies with the Minor League weekly wrap up.  The organization has to be happy with Clearwater, Reading and Lehigh Valley sitting in second place for their leagues.


There has not been much going on this week besides the usual game play.  Some things to think about this week is the fact Roy Halladay just left the game after two innings in St. Louis and Roy Oswalt is still available.  We are hoping it’s nothing serious, but it seems the Phillies are going to need some help.


Don’t forget that we here at Phillies Nations are more than just text.  You can watch us on Phillies Nation TV every week.  This week David Hale from the Wilmington News Journal stops by and the guys talk Ryan Howard and Kevin Youkilis.


Game Notes

Phillies squander many opportunities

Phillies lose their fourth straight

Phillies win wild one in St. Louis

Pence helps Phils edge Cards in extras

Kendrick auditions for fourth ace spot

Phils can’t sweep, Halladay exits early


The Phillies are still holding on at 25-24, 4.5 games back of Washington.  As always the NL East is a tight race and I suspect it will continue to be.


Phils Can’t Sweep, Halladay Exits Early

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, May 27, 2012 06:33 PM Comments: 23

You see, he's not a machine. He's a man.

A pinch hitter?  In the third inning?

A collective holding our breathe made its way from St. Louis to Virginia Beach all the way up to Philadelphia as Pete Orr came in to hit for Roy Halladay in the top of the third inning.  Halladay pitched only two innings.  He gave up a grand slam to Yadier Molina in the first inning.  That’s not the reason.

Not much of a Halladay – Halladay exited the game as a precaution to tightness in his right shoulder.  It was his shortest outing since July last season when he lasted only four innings due to the heat in Chicago.  The month of May has just been awful for the Phillies ace.

Halladay has given up 24 earned runs in just over 35 innings this month.  That’s a 6.11 ERA in May compared to 1.95 in April.  We can hope this is just soreness and nothing is seriously wrong.  But those of us who have been watching him carefully fear the worse, as always.  Halladay will be reevaluated this week.

Continue reading Phils Can’t Sweep, Halladay Exits Early


Kendrick Audtitions For Fourth Ace Spot

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, May 27, 2012 07:40 AM Comments: 2

Richie Ashburn Award: Kyle Kendrick

My name is Kyle Kendrick, and I like to play.

Hi, my name is Kyle Kendrick and I am a Major League pitcher.  No, seriously, I am.

Kendrick tossed his first complete game shut out for his career tonight as a guy who has never quite had a secure spot on this Phillies team.  He was once a starter moved to the bullpen then pulled back into the rotation and, again, trotted back out to the pen.  And tonight, he was a starter, the bullpen and the winning pitcher of a complete game shut out beating the Cardinals 4-0.

Continue reading Kendrick Audtitions For Fourth Ace Spot


Week In Review – Winning Is Fun, While It Lasts

Posted by Kieran Carobine, Sun, May 20, 2012 08:26 PM Comments: 2

Winning is great.  The Phillies know how to win.  The fans know what it’s like to feel like winners.  And boy did this team remind us of better days this week.  Yes, the Phillies are struggling right now and, yes, they are sitting in last place but there is still hope for this team.

They showed it this week reeling off a six game win streak before dropping two of three in interleague play against the Red Sox.  Once this team finally gets healthy (Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Vance Worley), these kinds of win streaks could be more frequent.


Until then we will continue to check the injury updates.  During today’s game, GM Ruben Amaro Jr spoke on both Utley and Howard.  He said Howard was down in Clearwater doing all baseball activities, just not at 100% quite yet.  As for Utley, he expects him to head south in about 8-10 days.


With so many injuries circling out there, it is not unlikely that the front office will be keeping their eyes and ears open to what’s out there and if they can help the team.  One of those players is Roy Oswalt.  Oswalt threw a bullpen session for the Phillies as a ‘see, I can still pitch’ sort of thing.  Could he help?  Absolutely.


Jake Diekman got his chance to prove his worth this week being called up to help out with the flailing bullpen.  And thanks to Chad Qualls inconsistency, he got his chance and ran with it.   Diekman isn’t the only farm hand turning head this season.  Jay Floyd gives you his weekly update on the BlueClaws, Pigs and other Phillies’ minor league teams.


Game Notes -

Blanton solid again, Polanco hits no. 2,000

Phillies win Pence walk-off in 10th

Phils extend win streak to five

Hamels win sixth in a row

Hits parade leads to loserville

Lee falters, Phillies can’t catch up


Phillies are 21-21 and sitting in last place in the NL East, five games behind the Braves.  There’s still hope…

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