Posts Tagged ‘Fastball’

Phils Snatch Victory From Braves

Posted by Ryan Dinger, Fri, September 06, 2013 09:22 PM Comments: 12

Richie Ashburn Award: Cody Asche
Hamels has been a victim of poor run support all season. (Photo: AP)

Cliff Lee was brilliant tonight. (Photo: AP)

For a long time, it seemed like the Phillies were going to lose tonight, and then, just like that, they didn’t.

A quick swing of Cody Asche’s bat, and a great effort from Cliff Lee, and the Phils found themselves a 2-1 victory over the first place Braves.


- For a long time, it looked bleak tonight. Not much happened. Mike Minor was in control, and the Phils were his obeyers, looking like they’d go quietly into the night. they didn’t even get a hit until the fourth inning. And when that first came off the bat of Jimmy Rollins, he got thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double. They’d get just one hit in four innings after that. And then a hero came along. A brash youngster, full of talent and expectations. It took Cody Asche to turn things around.

- Asche came to the plate in the seventh with two outs and a runner on first. Darin Ruf had singled before him to keep the inning alive, but it still appeared like Minor, facing the left-handed Asche, could see his way out of the inning with the lead intact. But Asche had other ideas. He came to the plate looking for a fastball, and when Minor gave him one on the first pitch of the at-bat, he didn’t miss it. The home run gave the Phillies the lead, and a cruising Cliff Lee didn’t waste it. Lee wouldn’t waste it. Continue reading Phils Snatch Victory From Braves


Phils Blow Lead, Lose Series

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Wed, September 04, 2013 10:09 PM Comments: 6

Doc struggled with command yet again, but gave up just one run over six innings. (PHOTO: AP)

Doc struggled with command yet again, but gave up just one run over six innings. (PHOTO: AP)

The Phillies had a 2-1 lead going into the 7th inning, after Roy Halladay had gutted out six innings of one-run baseball on the mound. But two batters later, the game was tied 2-2 after a home run by Ryan Zimmerman off Zach Miner. Then, in the 8th inning, a leadoff walk by Jake Diekman resulted in a manufactured run for the Nationals, and that’s all they would need to beat the Phils.


Roy Halladay began the game in a…sub-optimal way. His first two innings included four walks and a HBP. However, he only gave up one run. He then seemed to settle in, and cruised four more innings without giving up a run before he was taken out after the sixth inning. His fastball sat in the 86-88 range, which was slightly better than his last outing. He also seemed to make real-time adjustments on his command, which was actually fascinating to watch. I’ll definitely be keeping a close eye on him the rest of the year. Maybe he can learn to pitch like a Jamie Moyer type guy, as he suggested a couple weeks ago.


This might be nothing, but I’ve noticed that Jimmy Rollins hasn’t been hitting leadoff lately. Tonight, Cesar Hernandez got the call at the top of the lineup, and delivered with a two-run double in the second inning along with a single and a walk. He was caught stealing in the fifth.


The Phils are off tomorrow, but welcome the Atlanta Braves on Friday for a three game set. Friday is also the cool hat giveaway at Citizens Bank Park. Cliff Lee will take the mound for the Phillies and Mike Minor will get the ball for the Braves.


Phillies Trade McDonald to Red Sox

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sat, August 31, 2013 08:43 PM Comments: 8

McDonald, seen here celebrating his only homer in 2013 as a Phillie with Chooch. Photo by AP.

The Phillies make a waiver-deadline deal!

Color me surprised. No really, this one is kind of shocking.

Ruben Amaro Jr. found a taker for Major League Baseball’s most statistically ineffective player (fWAR/PA) John McDonald, shipping the utility infielder he got for nothing for Nefi Ogando, a 24-year old reliever from the Dominican Republic in his fourth season in organized baseball. McDonald hit .174/.208/.304 with one homer with the Phillies. This nearly tripled his entire triple-slash line at the time the Phillies acquired him (.053/.163/.079).

From Sox Prospects, here is a scouting report on Ogando:

Dominican right-hander signed later in the 2009-2010 international signing period. On the older side for an international signee. Fastballs sits 92-93 mph and tops out at 94 mph in shorter bursts. Currently being stretched out to sharpen arsenal. Loses velocity as outings progress due to max-effort delivery. Does not easily generate velocity. Below-average fastball command due to inconsistent release point and lack of fluidity in delivery. Rough overall mechanics that must become smoother to enhance command. He may struggle to reach average fastball command. Also features an 83-86 mph slider with tight rotation. Plus potential and the ability to miss bats with the offering. Feels slider well, but does not mix well into sequences. Still learning how to pitch. Slider’s effectiveness is suppressed because of inability to consistently get ahead of hitters. Not much room left on his frame to fill out. Profiles as a reliever. Potential for considerable improvement if delivery can be cleaned up.

Analysis: At the time of the trade for McDonald, many crushed Amaro for trading something of value for the veteran infielder. Now? Without hurting the Phillies too much, Amaro was essentially able to turn a small amount of cash that went to Cleveland for McDonald into a minor league bullpen arm. Ogando has a live arm and is eligible for next year’s Rule 5 draft. The Phillies will have all of 2014 to get a good look at Ogando before deciding if they want to protect him.


Young, Frandsen Key Comeback Win For Phils

Posted by Alex Lee, Fri, August 30, 2013 05:34 PM Comments: 6

Michael Young provided the game-winning hit on Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field.

Michael Young provided the game-winning hit on Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field.

The Phillies stormed back from a five-run deficit to beat the Cubs 6-5 at Wrigley Field on Friday afternoon in Ryne Sandberg‘s managerial debut in his old stomping grounds.  Michael Young had the decisive hit, a two-out flare into right field in the ninth inning that scored Roger Bernadina and put the Phillies up for good.  The go-ahead single was the exclamation point on a great day for Young.  Starting at third, Young tallied four hits, two RBIs and scored a run.  It was the second time this season the Phillies have come from five behind to win, the first time being on June 14 in Colorado.

The Cubs jumped on a wild and ineffective Roy Halladay early to take a 5-0 lead.  The Phillies offense, behind two big Kevin Frandsen hits, came to life in the sixth and seventh innings while the bullpen shut down the Cubs over the game’s final four innings to seal the win.  Jonathan Papelbon nailed down his 23rd save of the season in the ninth.


- In short, Halladay looked awful on Friday afternoon in an outing that was very reminiscent of the worrisome starts we saw from him in March and April.  For the day, Doc lasted only five innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and two walks.  He lacked command with all of his pitches, and his fastball sat between 85-87 miles-per-hour throughout the start.  He threw 77 pitches, only 48 of which went for strikes.  Not good.

- While he only gave up one run in the first three innings – an Anthony Rizzo wind-aided home run in the first – Doc was more effectively wild than he was effective in the early going.  Eventually it would catch up with him, as Nate Schierholtz hit a screaming liner over the right field fence to lead off the fourth to make it 2-0.  The Cubs added five more hits and a walk in the next two innings – the biggest of which was a two-run Starlin Castro double – to make it 5-0 through five. Continue reading Young, Frandsen Key Comeback Win For Phils


Lee and Asche Lead Phils Over Mets

Posted by Alex Lee, Mon, August 26, 2013 10:07 PM Comments: 16

Cliff Lee got his 11th win of 2013 on Monday night in New York. (AP Photo)

Cliff Lee got his 11th win of 2013 on Monday night in New York. (AP Photo)

The Phillies beat the Mets, 2-1, at Citifield on Monday night behind a stellar outing from Cliff Lee and a two-run triple by Cody Asche.  Lee was brilliant against a depleted New York lineup that was without third baseman David Wright, earning his 11th win of the season.  He was economical with his pitches (at least until the eighth) and fielded his position well, recording five outs himself on ground balls back to the pitcher.

The Phils’ bats struggled against rookie phenom Zack Wheeler, but Asche’s first career triple provided all the offense Lee would need.  After a Michael Young single and a Darin Ruf walk, Asche launched a 1-0 high fastball into the gap in right field.  It rolled all the way to the fence and Asche ended up on third base.

Jonathan Papelbon pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to notch his 22nd save on the year.  It was only the third save opportunity for Papelbon since the All-Star break.  The Phils have now won seven of nine.


- Lee had his best start since May on Monday night, tossing eight innings and allowing only one earned run on five hits.  He faced three batters in six of his first seven innings and retired 10 consecutive hitters heading into the eighth inning.  Lee threw 121 pitches on the night, 84 of which went for strikes.  He struck out seven Mets.  It was Lee’s first win in his last nine starts. Continue reading Lee and Asche Lead Phils Over Mets


Projecting the 2014 Starting Rotation

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Fri, August 23, 2013 03:00 PM Comments: 18

http://l.yimg.com/iu/api/res/1.2/HF5iifnX9ej7tQKcmEeO1Q--/YXBwaWQ9eXZpZGVvO2NoPTg2MDtjcj0xO2N3PTY1NztkeD0yO2R5PTE7Zmk9dWxjcm9wO2g9ODU7cT0xMDA7dz02NQ--/http://l.yimg.com/j/assets/i/us/sp/v/mlb/players_l/20130405/8053.1.jpgKyle Kendrick had the Rockies on their heels last night through the first five innings, allowing just one earned by locating his fastball and getting hitters to make weak contact on his cutter. The wheels came off for Kendrick in the sixth: he allowed three runs without getting an out. A three-run shot by Wilin Rosario was the knockout blow.

Last night’s performance by Kendrick was a microcosm of his season: flashes of him taking the next step followed by moments of hard regression. Kendrick, by any measure, is having a career year: likely to reach a career high in innings pitched, Kendrick has career lows in BB/9 IP, HR/9 IP, HR/FB, FIP, and xFIP for full seasons, has already reached a career-high 1.6 fWAR, and is averaging almost a half strikeout more per nine innings pitched versus his career average. Entering June, Kendrick appeared to be a fringe All-Star candidate. Exiting July, a non-tender candidate. After last night? Who knows.

Kendrick’s performance is especially important when making decisions related to 2014. Kendrick is arbitration eligible after 2013, making $4.5 million this year and likely due for a raise in 2014. Kendrick is joined by John Lannan, who is also arbitration eligible after this season and is currently making $2.5 million, and Roy Halladay as pitchers the Phillies relied on to be in the starting rotation for 2013 who have a large series of question marks surrounding them.

Continue reading Projecting the 2014 Starting Rotation


Phillies Find Themselves Back in the Loss Column

Posted by Amanda Orr, Tue, August 20, 2013 11:59 PM Comments: 3

It was a nice winning streak while it lasted (a whole two games).  The Colorado Rockies defeated the Philadelphia Phillies by a score of 5-3 on Tuesday.

The Rockies got to Tyler Cloyd quickly.  Troy Tulowitzki and Wilin Rosario homered off him in the first and third innings respectively.  Cloyd lasted six innings, surrendering five earned runs.  Cloyd settled down after the third, but the Rockies provided the damage early.

The Phillies made some noise in the bottom of the third inning, but it wasn’t nearly enough as Jorge De La Rosa limited them to three runs (two earned).

The good news was that Zach Miner and Cesar Jimenez threw a combined three scoreless innings out of the Phillies bullpen.

Halladay Makes Rehab Appearance

Roy Halladay pitched six innings in Class-A Lakewood.  He allowed two runs (one earned) and seven hits.  He walked three and struck out four.   Halladay averaged 87 mph on his fastball, but touched 89 mph early on.  Out of his 90 pitches, 52 were strikes.


Phils Interested in Roger Bernadina

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Tue, August 20, 2013 07:54 AM Comments: 13

According to CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury, the Phillies are interested in signing recently released former Washington Nationals outfielder Roger Bernadina. Bernadina, 29, had a career year last year, hitting .291/.372/.405 in 261 PA for the Nats with five homers and 15 steals but stumbled out of the gate in 2013 and never really got going. Bernadina’s .178/.247/.270 line in 2013 are career lows as is his .233 weighted On-Base Average (wOBA) while his 26.3% K rate is a career high.

Bernandina is a lefty but does not have particularly strong platoon splits for his career, hitting righties at just a .244/.313/.367 clip. Berandina would provide versatility as a back-up outfielder and has been of a net-positive value in left and right field for the Nationals in the defensive metric Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR).

Analysis: Signing “The Shark” would be like signing a left-handed version of Casper Wells. Bernadina makes the plays in left and right and can fake it in center while Wells plays a touch better defense and has more potential to run into a fastball every once in a while. Bernadina has two years of arbitration eligibility remaining so adding him this year could have some value but I would much rather see a player like Leandro Castro added to the 40-man roster for September or Tyson Gillies have a cup of coffee with his improved swing that has led him to a .314/.364/.451 line in August.

His nickname, however, has lead to one of the most unique stadium give-a-ways of all time and some interesting memes.


Phillies hang on for 5-4 victory

Posted by Brian Michael, Mon, August 19, 2013 10:15 PM Comments: 22

ethan-martin2The Phillies lineup showed flashes of power tonight and it was enough to propel Ethan Martin to his second career win. It was also the Phils first back-to-back win since July 19th.

Offensively, the Phillies showed signs of improvement. They took an early 1-0 lead in the fourth inning on a fielder’s choice by Cody Asche. It was Asche’s ninth career RBI in 57 at bats. Not soon after, John Mayberry, Jr. blasted his ninth homer of the season with two men on base. Carlos Ruiz added a solo shot in the fifth to give the Phils a 5-0 lead. Chooch benefited from hitting in the two-hole this evening, going 2-4. Ryne Sandberg mentioned prior to the game that he wanted to take advantage of his Ruiz’s situational hitting by moving him up in the batting order. He also spoke at length about his focus on getting Jimmy Rollins going offensively – i.e. seeing more pitches, getting on base and scoring runs.

Ethan Martin pitched well tonight, going 6.1 innings with 4 hits, 2 earned runs, 2 walks and 6 strikeouts. This represented the longest outing in the 24-year old’s budding career. Although he had trouble escaping the seventh inning and allowed 2 runs, Justin DeFratus’s relief minimized the damage. Martin started the game with a strong 12-pitch first inning which allowed him to go longer than previous games, but he still had trouble during his third time through the opponent’s lineup. Still, it was an encouraging start for the righty auditioning for a spot in the 2014 rotation.

Luis Garcia took the mound in eighth inning and coughed up 2 runs on 2 singles and 2 walks before being yanked for Jake Diekman. After a strikeout to record the second out, Diekman was called for a balk on an odd play during Nolan Arenado‘s at bat. Arenado seemed to shiver after Carlos Ruiz moved behind the plate and Jake Diekman thought time had been called. It had not, and after a short argument by the new Phillies skipper, Diekman recovered quickly to strikeout Arenado with a 99-mph fastball. The drama of the eighth inning certainly energized the CBP crowd of 35,000+. Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth, earning his 21st save on the season and first since July 11. Unfortunately during the inning, Carlos Ruiz took a hard pitch off the facemask.

Tyler Cloyd makes his return to the Phillies to start tomorrow at 7:05pm.


Halladay Tosses 6 Innings with GCL Phillies

Posted by Pat Gallen, Thu, August 15, 2013 03:01 PM Comments: 11

halladayRoy Halladay took a huge leap forward in his progression following shoulder surgery three months ago to the day. In Clearwater, with the Gulf Coast League Phillies, Halladay tossed six innings, allowing three runs on six hits. He walked three and struck out four, throwing 87 pitches.

There has been no word on what kind of velocity was behind his fastball, although I’m sure we’ll know that information in the coming hours. According to Chris Branch of the Wilmington News Journal, some onlookers tweeted he was mostly in the mid-80′s.

If Halladay and the Phillies are happy with the start, the next move could be to Lehigh Valley as they will be home when his turn in the rotation takes place Tuesday. The Phillies have said Halladay could need as few as two starts before returning to the major leagues. That said, if he’s only in the 80′s with his fastball against teenagers in the GCL, maybe a few more starts to get his endurance back to normal levels wouldn’t be such a bad thing.

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