Posts Tagged ‘Baseball Team’

Tragedy Strikes Phillies Family in AZ Shooting

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sun, January 09, 2011 11:28 AM Comments: 7

Some sad news to pass along from the extended Philadelphia Phillies family:

In Saturday”s rampage shooting in Arizona, one of the victims, Christina-Taylor Green, was a nine-year-old granddaughter of former Phillies manager and now-consultant, Dallas Green. Six people were killed and 13 more injured, including U.S. Representative Gabriella Giffords who was holding an open forum at a local supermarket in Tuscon.

This is certainly an unthinkable tragedy that has affected the Phillies family as well as the Dodgers family. Christina’s father, John, is a scout for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Our thoughts go out to not only the Green family, but all those affected by this senseless act of violence from a clearly-deranged person.

From the High Cheese Blog on Philly.com:

Christina-Taylor Green, born on Sept. 11, 2001, died while trying to meet Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords at an appearance at a supermarket in Tucson. She attended with a neighbor, who was shot four times and was recovering from surgery last night.

According to the Arizona Daily Star, the third-grader “already told her parents she wanted to attend Penn State one day and have a career that involved helping those less fortunate than her. She also loved animals and was a passionate dancer who loved ballet, hip-hop, jazz and gymnastics and was the only girl on her Canyon del Oro Little League baseball team, “The Pirates.” She played second base.”

Her father, John, is a scout for the Dodgers.

“We lost a member of the Dodgers family today,” owner Frank McCourt said in a statement. “The entire Dodgers organization is mourning the death of John’s daughter Christina, and will do everything we can to support John, his wife Roxana and their son Dallas in the aftermath of this senseless tragedy. I spoke with John earlier today and expressed condolences on behalf of the entire Dodgers organization.”

Christina-Taylor also had an 11-year-old brother Dallas, named for their grandfather.

And from the Phillies and David Montgomery:

“The Phillies organization expresses our heartfelt condolences to Dallas and Sylvia and the entire Green family on the senseless, tragic loss of Christina’s life.  She was a talented young girl with a bright promising future.  Her untimely death weighs heavily on our hearts. Our thoughts and prayers are with all the families affected by yesterday’s horrific shooting.”

David Montgomery
Phillies President


Offseason Icebreakers, Vol. 2: The Unbeatable Team

Posted by Michael Baumann, Tue, December 21, 2010 02:50 PM Comments: 20

In order to alleviate the boredom of the offseason–the NFL and regular season ice hockey being inadequate as diversions–I’ll be posting icebreaker questions periodically. They’ll always be at least tangentially related to the Phillies, and, as always, feel free to leave your own answers in the comment section.

This icebreaker comes courtesy of my younger brother, who killed about 3 hours on a bus somewhere in Eastern Europe with this question. You are hired as the general manager of a baseball team and given the task of assembling a team that will win each of the next 10 World Series. If you fail, you’ll be executed.

The Rules:

You can choose any 25 people on the planet, regardless of contract status or if they’re in the major leagues. Money is no object–any player can be had and paid. You can also choose any assortment of players–if you want to go with 8 position players and 17 pitchers, or vice versa, knock yourself out.

However, once you choose your 25-man roster, no changes can be made for 10 years. Also, while money is no object, injuries and aging are, so if you pick Roy Halladay as your ace, don’t expect him to perform at his current level until he’s 44. And while you’re at it, you also have to hire a manager and a coaching staff. A big tip of the hat to FanGraphs and Baseball Reference, two sites that, as always, have been my primary sources for research.

My Unbeatable Team is after the jump. If you feel so inclined, make up one of your own and leave it in the comments section. Warning: this post is 5,001 words long, so if you’re one of those people who refuses to read anything longer than a comic strip, you might want to take a pass.

Continue reading Offseason Icebreakers, Vol. 2: The Unbeatable Team


Baby Steps: Shoot for the Wild Card

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, July 19, 2010 01:11 PM Comments: 59

Eight. That’s how many times a Wild Card team has made it to the World Series in the past decade, including both participants in 2002 with Anaheim and San Francisco getting in. As long as you make it to the postseason, anything can happen.

Teams don’t necessarily want to make it in as a runner-up in their own division, but proceeding to the second season in any way possible works just fine.  The Phillies may find this out relatively soon.

With the division slipping away with each passing loss, perhaps it’s time to focus on becoming the best runner up in the National League. The Wild Card may be where it’s at.

The Phillies currently sit 5.5 games behind the Braves in the NL East, with a 1/2 game separating the Phils and the Mets. In the very early WC standings, a slew of teams are within striking distance. Two games separate six teams, with Colorado leading the way at 50-41. The Phils sit at 48-43.

For as seemingly awful as this season has progressed, there is room for optimism. They really can’t play much worse, can they? This Phils club is far too explosive and talented to waste this season from start to finish. The ingredients are still there and with the trade deadline close, a change could be made to kick start the engine once again.

If you’ll recall, the 2007 Phillies went on a late tear which put them into the postseason, coming back from seven games down over the final 17 games. That same year, Colorado stole the wild card on the final day of the year after ripping off 13 wins in the final 14 games.  There is an opportunity to again become the comeback kids of the NL. Is it looking likely with the way this team is playing? No, not really. But at any point, a baseball team can create a positive swing of momentum.

And if it means settling for the Wild Card, then so be it.


Happ Effective, Offense Continues to Roll

Posted by Jason Bintliff, Sat, April 10, 2010 12:02 AM Comments: 37

For Chris Wheeler’s 64 and 2/3  birthday, the broadcast team provided the cake. The baseball team provided the fireworks.

The Phillies jumped on the Astros early, tagging the  starter, Bud Norris, for three runs in the first. Jimmy Rollins and Placido Polanco set the table and Ryan Howard doubled in Rollins to get the party started. Two batters later, Raul Ibanez knocked in two more and the Phillies cruised from there.

Starter J.A. Happ was solid in his debut, going five innings, with five K’s, holding the Astros scoreless. The Phillies bullpen was equally steady, pitching four shut-out frames, including two scoreless from rule-5 draft pick David Herndon.

The Astros pitching did not fare quite as well. Starter Norris was chased in the third, after throwing 82 pitches. Although he only surrendered the three in the first, Norris flirted with danger in both the second and third innings, jamming the bases full. Command was a struggle for Norris as he allowed four free passes in 2 2/3 innings of work. The bullpen fared even worse, allowing five more runs on ten hits.

There were no shortage of offensive studs for the Phils as they brought eight runs across the plate.

Ibanez, who struggled in the first series of the season, broke out of his funk, going 3-4 with two doubles, a walk, and three RBI’s. Howard also doubled twice, as the Phillies pounded out seven extra-base hits, including Chase Utley’s first bomb of the season.

Rollins, often criticized for his atypical approach to batting lead-off has shown through four games that he can fit the mold of that role. He drew two walks in tonights contest and scored twice. So far Rollins has six walks on the season, a total that he did not reach until mid-May of last season. He also gathered two hits, including a double. Polanco is also proving his value, going 4-5, with two ribbies and two runs scored.

Victorino was the only position player held hit-less despite three hard hit balls for outs, including a spectacular catch from former Phillie Michael Bourn.

The Phillies lineup has collected ten or more hits in their first four games, the first time they’ve accomplished the feat since 1926. That club, led by Art Fletcher went on to a 58-93 season. I have a feeling these Phillies will fare much better.


Listen Live to Exhibition Game vs. FSU

Posted by Amanda Orr, Wed, March 03, 2010 06:45 PM Comments: 21

The Philadelphia Phillies will face Florida State University in an exhibition game at 7:05 p.m.  J.A Happ, Phillipe Aumont, Drew Naylor, Yohan Flande, Joe Savery, Jesus Sanchez, and David Herdon will each pitch in tonight’s game against the Seminoles.

The Phillies last played Florida State in 2007, and roughed them up, 12-4. 

This year, Florida State’s baseball team is ranked second in the country.  It will be interesting to see how Aumont and other players do,  however, keep an eye on college players such as Staurt Tapley and Tyler Holt.  Some of these players could potentially be a Major League draft pick in the future. 

Click this link to listen to the game on the official athletic site of the Seminoles.


The Dip: The Needle and the Damage Done

Posted by The Dipsy, Wed, January 13, 2010 08:11 PM Comments: 37

This is The Dip, a column penned by our regular commenter, The Dipsy.

http://blogs.suntimes.com/sportsprose/assets_c/2009/10/mark-mcgwire-hitting-coach-thumb-300x300-12772.jpgSo Mark McGwire apologized for doing steroids. I guess that’s nice and I’m sure that it makes him feel better that he won’t be hounded every place he goes in his capacity as St. Louis Cardinals batting coach this season. I kinda feel bad for McGwire in a way because, in part, he is a victim. That’s right I said “victim”. The terse statement put out through his press agent merely contained an apology for something that he didn’t have say sorry for in the first place. McGwire did nothing wrong by taking steroids so he could recover from injuries, train more efficiently, and possibly acquire keener eyesight (according to Larry Bowa) so he could hit more homeruns. The only thing he did wrong was lie about it.

After the 1994 baseball strike, MLB did the stupidest thing in the world by making an owner of a baseball team the commissioner, and yes, the Brewers do count as a baseball team. Attendance was down and people were turned off. So when Bud Selig and everyone else within the inner sanctum of baseball suspected or knew that PEDs had become part of the game, they winked and kept on walking. Steroids and HGH and whatever else had been around for awhile. The Olympics had been fraught with PED’s for years. As it seeped into Major League Baseball, and more balls started flying out of ballparks and at greater distances, the turnstiles to started to smoke and the cash started to roll in. With the strike a distance memory, fans renewed their fixation with the long ball. It was in this environment, permissive and perhaps tacitly encouraged, that the slugger, armed with the knowledge that he could shoot a drug into his body to make him perform better and hit more home runs, and in turn make more money, had a choice to make. Many chose to use steroids.

Prior to 2002, when steroids were banned in baseball (the Anabolic Steroid Acts of 1990 and 2004 merely made it a crime to possess or unlawfully dispense steroids), any player was free to choose whether he wanted to use steroids or not. The only choice players had to make was whether they wanted to sacrifice their long term health in exchange for the perceived benefit the drugs would have on their game. For most players who took them, the effect was probably none. But if I’m McGwire back in 1998, knowing that MLB didn’t give a damn whether you took them or not, that they actually delighted in seeing you hit home runs as much as you enjoyed hitting them, that you would get paid more for your superior performance, I’d have done them too. No question. The only problem I have with McGwire is that, when asked, he didn’t man up from the beginning and stand behind his decision to do them.

The good times rolled, that ridiculous Sosa-McGuire-Bonds home run orgy came and went, and then, like every good scam, everyone got busted and all those complicit lawyered up. The most galling aspect of it all was MLB’s feigned surprise that this had been going on under their noses the entire time. Then, laughably, the U.S. Government suggested (strongly) that MLB put a stop to the use of steroids. Oh, how that must of hurt Bud Selig and the rest of the fellas. Not only does the golden goose get killed but they had to stick the knife in themselves. In the age of “bubbles”, the “steroid bubble” had burst.

So, here we are, after all the haggling between baseball and union, Mitchell reports, anonymous/non-anonymous player lists, juiced statistics, grand jury investigations, etc., And for the most part, I think the steroid policy that has been put in place is effective. And that’s a good thing. Now, I guess we’re left to ponder how to view what will surely become known as the steroid era in baseball. If you would wanna pick a year, say 1992, and have it generally regarded that 92-02 represents this era, that’s OK by me. I will look at most players and stats from this era with a jaundiced eye. Example: I don’t believe that Brady Anderson was drug free when he hit 50 of his 51 career homers in one season. If that is unfair to the clean players and the stats generated by them, well, that’s the way its gonna have to be. But as for McGwire, I didn’t wanna hear him say used steroids and was sorry sorry. I would have just rather him acknowledge that he’s a liar and leave it at that.


Bullpen, Bats Assure D.C. Sweep

Posted by Tim Malcolm, Sun, May 17, 2009 05:26 PM Comments: 57

RollinsDCLike any good team, the Phillies ran through a bad team, sweeping the Nationals in four games with an 8-6 win.

This time the Phils needed a late comeback, and got it in the eighth. After putting the first two runners on, a well-executed Pedro Feliz bunt resulted in a complete defensive breakdown by Anderson Hernandez, letting in two runs and setting up a third. Eric Brunlett made that possible with a pinch-hit RBI double. The three-run inning handed the Phils a two-run lead, which they wouldn’t squander this time.

That’s because the bullpen was superb. Notching the win in his first career appearance was Sergio Escalona. The Reading lefty callup pitched a fine, scoreless seventh against right-handed hitters. WIth him was Jack Taschner (2.2 IP, H, 2 BB, K), Chad Durbin (2 IP, 2 H, ER, 2 K), Scott Eyre (1.1 IP, BB, 2 K) and Brad Lidge, who threw two pitches and got two outs for the easiest save he’s collected as a Phillie. And that was highly important.

The offense teed off against rookie Jordan Zimmermann early, as Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino drove in runs in the first for a 3-0 lead. But Chan Ho Park had a poor start, never getting out of the second while letting up five runs. The Phils battled back early, though, thanks to a Jimmy Rollins RBI single and Chase Utley RBI double.

With the sweep, the Phils are now at 20-16. At 7 p.m. Friday we were all fretting a .500 baseball team; 46 hours later we’re basking in a team four over .500.

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