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Gameday 67: Cubs vs. Phillies

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sun, June 15, 2014 12:58 PM Comments: 35

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Chicago Cubs (26-39) at Philadelphia Phillies (29-37)

Starting Pitchers:
CHI: Travis Wood (6-5, 4.95)
vs.
PHI: AJ Burnett (4-5, 4.24)

Time: 1:05, Citizens Bank Park
TV: CSN
Weather: Sunny, 81
Media: Twitter and Facebook

Jimmy Rollins is now the all-time hit king for the Phillies. So now what? Well, now they try and win back to back series with a win over the Cubs. They can do so if AJ Burnett can pitch much the same way he did against the Padres earlier in the week.

Lineup: Revere CF / Rollins SS / Utley 2B / Byrd RF/ Ruiz C / Brown LF / Mayberry 1B / Cedeno 3B / Burnett P

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Jimmy Rollins, Phillies All-Time Hit Leader

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sat, June 14, 2014 05:26 PM Comments: 12

Jimmy Rollins passed Mike Schmidt on the Phillies all-time hit list with no. 2,235 in the fifth inning. Congrats to the Phillies new hit king.

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Injury News: Ruf, MAG, Adams, Lee

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, June 13, 2014 09:16 PM Comments: 0

-Darin Ruf has a hairline fracture in his left wrist, Ruben Amaro said Friday. He should be able to resume playing in games in about three weeks. “When it heals, it’ll be playable,’ said the GM. I’d like to see Ruf get another look at the majors, but we probably won’t see that for at least a few weeks.

-Amaro said that Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez threw a bullpen on Thursday and registered 93-94 on the radar. MAG had been shut down with a sore shoulder. We won’t be seeing the $12 million Cuban any time soon.

-Mike Adams was slated to have a cortisone shot in his ailing right arm today, according to Amaro. He’s been dealing with inflammation in his surgically repaired shoulder, but Amaro said that if all goes well they could have him back in early July.

-Freddy Galvis could be playing in games next month after breaking his collarbone.

-Cliff Lee threw again on Friday, the third time in four days he was able to do so. Amaro, however, did not elaborate on a timeline for Lee.

 

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Notes: Rollins, Lee, Giles

Posted by Pat Gallen, Thu, June 12, 2014 05:23 PM Comments: 21

-Soon, Jimmy Rollins will hold the Phillies all-time hits record. It should be within a day or two, barring a slump. With that, he’ll pass Mike Schmidt, the greatest Phillie of all-time, in a fairly important statistical category. And how does that make everyone feel?

I’ve gotten some interesting responses on twitter as to the feelings people will have and it seems mixed. It’s not like he’s shocking anyone by doing this, we’ve been tracking it for some time. Yet, some still play the hater role when it comes to Rollins. Will you be happy, sad, indifferent, when he breaks the record? Does it matter?

-Cliff Lee tossed again on Thursday and could throw again tomorrow. He told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com that he felt good after 40-45 tosses on flat ground. Lee went on the DL on May 20 and picked up a ball for the first time on Tuesday. But it’s likely we won’t see him for at least the next three weeks. That gets us into July before he makes another major league start, and  you know what that does to a mans trade value.

-Ken Giles was about as nervous as any major leaguer I’ve ever seen after his first appearance. A few things: he seems like a shy kid, not that it mattes one way or another. But he doesn’t have the nutty closer in him, at least not yet. Giles also isn’t very big. Just looks like a normal dude who can somehow throw 100. He also seems to understand what it’s going to take. When asked about how important his slider is to becoming a full-time major leaguer, he agreed it was paramount. As you saw on the home run by Grandal, having a good fastball is not nearly enough. With a wipeout slider, as he called it, Giles becomes a force. But only if he can harness it.

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Efficient Burnett Helps Phillies to Win Over Padres

Posted by Pat Gallen, Tue, June 10, 2014 10:37 PM Comments: 16

AJ Burnett shook off a few ugly starts to pitch 7+ innings, leading the Phillies to a 5-2 victory over the San Diego Padres.

Good Burnett

-All year it has been Jekyll and Hyde with AJ Burnett. Tonight, we got the proper version. Burnett needed just 89 pitches to throw 7 1/3 innings, a breeze by his standards. He allowed just two runs while striking out three and walking two. I’d caution, however; the Padres aren’t good.

-Jake Diekman came in and lit up the gun. He hit 100 mph once, much to the delight of the crowd. Ken Giles who?

-Jonathan Papelbon closed it out, but not before loading the bases and throwing 28 pitches. Jayson Stark said on our Monday show that execs around the league have no idea how he’s getting by with his stuff. Wonder if there will be a market for him?

It was also career save No. 300 for Paps.

Byrd Flies

-Marlon Byrd hit his 10th home run of the year, a three-run blast in a four-run fourth inning. Consider me shocked that Marlon has become a bit of a power hitter.

-Three other Phillies (Revere, Utley, and Howard) posted two hits a piece.

Clever Jimmy

-Great play by Jimmy Rollins in the 8th inning to dodge a tag by Evereth Cabrera, which allowed Chase Utley to make it to first base. The Phillies didn’t score, but I was very much a fan of that heads up play. Jimmy doesn’t get enough credit for things like that. If that were Chase, it would have been the smartest, bestest play ever.

 

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Phillies Sign First Round Pick Aaron Nola

Posted by Pat Egan, Tue, June 10, 2014 03:04 PM Comments: 3

The Phillies have come to terms with their first round pick, Aaron Nola. The Phillies took Nola seventh overall in last Thursday’s draft as he became the first of many college draft picks by the Phillies. Nola’s father A.J. Nola has said that the contract includes a $3.3 million dollar signing bonus, which is slot value for the seventh overall pick.

Nola, who was the LSU ace, compiled impressive numbers this past season with the Tigers. In 16 games this season Nola went 11-1 with a 1.47 ERA (16th in NCAA). He struck out 134 batters (2nd in NCAA) in 116.1 innings pitched. Hitters batted just .172 off of him this season, and his .83 WHIP was good for fourth among NCAA pitchers.

Scouts believe that Nola will be the first player from the 2014 draft class to reach the majors. Because of this I wouldn’t be surprised to see him thrust right into the struggling High A Clearwater Threshers rotation. The Threshers have struggled mightily this season with a record of 14-49 and the worst team ERA in the Florida State League (4.89).

With AJ Burnett, Kyle Kendrick, and Roberto Hernández on the last years of their contracts, and Cliff Lee the topic of impending trade talk, the Phillies will probably look to fast track Nola to the majors as they will likely have a pressing need for starting pitching come next season.

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The Hopeless Phillies of 2014 and Beyond

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Mon, June 09, 2014 02:30 PM Comments: 56

Recently, I was fortunate enough to take a wonderful vacation with my wife to Orlando, FL and New Orleans, LA to visit family. On the trip, I met my newest nephew for the first time and played golf at a level not unlike Sinbad in House Guest. My wife and I did the trip by car, going, by our estimation, over 3,200 miles round trip, seeing parts of the country we had never seen before.

With rest and relaxation on my mind, I had almost quite literally forgotten about the Phillies. When we left, they were just a few games out of the race and, even though I pegged them as a 64-win team in the offseason, I did not think they would fall into a tailspin this season or at least this early in it. When we returned to Glenside, PA, I started to think that maybe forgetting about them was the best thing that could have happened.

It has been difficult to write or think about the Phillies and I wanted to hold off writing something extremely negative until they won a few games. Seeing as they have lost eight of nine, I am not sure that day will come soon. Still in a vacation haze, Buster Olney successfully snapped me out of it with one sentence uttered during ESPN’s draft coverage. I am unable to find the footage and do not want to misquote Olney but it was to the effect of:

The Phillies are in trouble and not just in trouble this year but for a long, long time.

Continue reading The Hopeless Phillies of 2014 and Beyond

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Did the Phillies Accidentally Trade a Prospect?

Posted by Amanda Orr, Sun, June 08, 2014 08:10 PM Comments: 30

There have been numerous reports around the Internet claiming that the Phillies accidentally traded a prospect in the 2011 Hunter Pence deal.

Domingo Santana

In exchange for Pence, the Houston Astros received Jonathan Singleton, Jarred Cosart, Josh Zeid, and a player to be named later, who turned out to be Domingo Santana. Singleton made his Major League debut last week after being given a 5-year, $10 million contract.  Cosart has found his way into the Astros’ rotation and Zeid remains a pitching prospect.  In Triple-A, Santana is batting .297 and may soon find his way into the Majors. Now, Santana has become the question of the trade.  According to reports, Santana was not on the list of players that the Astros were able to choose from.

Reports are saying that the mistake was made on the Phillies part, and they never intended to let Santana go. With the Phillies’ poor play and with Santana about to be the third player in the Pence deal to appear in the Majors, the trade may be receiving more attention than it should.

Ruben Amaro Jr. has denied the mistake, claiming Santana was needed to complete the deal:

“We didn’t want to put [Domingo] Santana on the list but we had to to get the deal done.  There were several prospects we didn’t want to part with in that deal but we were trying to acquire the best right-handed hitter on the market and that was the price. I understand we’re going to get picked apart because we haven’t had success for a couple of years, but this is not true.”

“There were three names that they had to have.  There was a list of three or four more guys from which they could choose one. I think they wanted more time for evaluation. Santana was on the list because Ed [Wade] asked for him to be placed on the list. There was no mistake.”

It all comes down to who got the better end of the deal. The Astros received four top prospects who are about to make an impact in the big leagues, while the Phillies got one year and a playoff appearance out of Pence.

What do you think? Was this an honest mistake on the Phillies part, or do you believe Ruben Amaro Jr.?

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Nola’s Goofy Shoulder; Phillies Run Differential

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, June 06, 2014 12:29 PM Comments: 8

-David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News, who joined us on Phillies Nation TV this past week, wrote a quick, yet interesting post on Aaron Nola’s release and arm action when throwing a baseball.

There seems to be an awful lot of force concentrated on his right shoulder just before he releases his ball to home plate. The force pushes it toward third base, before its physical structure slams its momentum to a stop and turns into the fulcrum off of which the baseball is launched.

Go ahead, watch the video. It does not look normal, or comfortable.

It’s certainly a weird movement within the shoulder on Nola’s followthrough, however, to ease your mind, he has had no history of shoulder issues, obviously a good note.

-Corey Seidman tweeted this beaut today:

That is how far they’ve fallen in a little over two months time. Forget the record, forget the division; the Phillies will not win anything if they can’t come close to winning the run-differential battle.

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Reports: Cedeno Called up, Gillies removed from 40-man

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, June 06, 2014 11:25 AM Comments: 14

According to the Express-Times, the Phillies will call up veteran infielder Ronny Cedeno today. No word on who will be sent down from the roster. Cedeno is hitting .286 with one home run and 10 RBI while playing the middle infield.

According to the Lehigh Valley broadcast, via Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly who tweeted this late last night, the Phillies have released Tyson Gillies. Haven’t heard any other news from any sources yet on this, but will keep an eye/ear out. If so, the Phillies have finally give up on a talented, yet oft-injured piece of the Cliff Lee trade. Man, that did not work out AT ALL.

 UPDATE:  Official word on Gillies is that he cleared waivers and was outrighted off the the Phillies’ 40-man roster and will remain on the Triple-A Lehigh Valley roster.

PhilliesNation’s minor league insider Jay Floyd contacted Gillies for comment today, but the 25-year-old British Columbia native declined to offer any thoughts.

Gillies, who has had repeated disciplinary concerns since joining the Phillies organization and reportedly had a verbal bout with coaches over being removed from a game last week, is batting .217 with two homers and 10 RBI in 37 games with the IronPigs this year.

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