Nation Notes: Mets vs. Phillies

Posted by Matthew Gephart, Mon, August 24, 2015 05:16 PM Comments: 4

New York Mets (67-56) at Philadelphia Phillies (50-74)


Starting Pitchers:
PHI: Adam Morgan, LHP (4-4, 3.92)
NYM: Jacob DeGrom, RHP (12-6, 1.98)

Time: 7:05 EST, Citizens Bank Park
Weather: Partly Cloudy, 88 degrees
Media: Twitter and Facebook

A Note for Today:

The Phillies come into this series against the Mets as the 4th best team in the MLB since the All-Star break, with a record of 21-12.

The Phillies have come far since the last series against the division rivals in May, and at the All-Star break, none would have guessed that a team with 62 losses could keep up a record behind the Blue Jays, Cubs, and Cardinals for the second half of the year.

Over those games, the Phillies have faced some of the toughest pitchers in baseball and tonight will be no different.  The Phillies will look to de-saddle Jacob DeGrom, who has been at the helm of the Mets rotation all season, posting a 1.98 ERA, and is 15th in the MLB for strikeouts per 9 innings, 10th in the National League.

His opposition, Adam Morgan, finds himself in the heart of a young rotation, finding success against teams like the Toronto Blue Jays and St. Louis Cardinals.  Morgan went for 7.0 innings in his last start against the tough hitting lineup of the Toronto Blue Jays, giving up 5 hits with only 2 earned runs, one being a home run.

The Phillies order is looking a little ‘normal’ again since all the call ups and trades.  Dominic Brown and Cody Asche are back in the lineup since a little hiatus for a few days while they gave Aaron Altherr and Darnell Sweeney looks in the outfield, which turned out to be huge successes.  Look to see more of them in the future.

One note worth noting is the fact that Carlos Ruiz has been hard to find these days.  Cameron Rupp has been the catcher for most of the young bucks coming up and that doesn’t seem to be changing with the hopes of Andrew Knapp making the call up in September, which is right around the corner.

First pitch comes to you at 7:05 EST.


Hernandez 3B, Galvis SS, Herrera CF, Howard 1B, Blanco 3B, Asche LF, Brown RF, Rupp C, Morgan LHP


Utley thanks Philadelphia in heartfelt Daily News ad

Posted by Ryan Gerstel, Mon, August 24, 2015 10:42 AM Comments: 7

Chase Utley made his appreciation for Philadelphia pretty clear in his farewell press conference following the news that he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

“The hardest part is leaving the city of Philadelphia. They’ve been so good to me and so supportive of me over the years. I can’t thank them enough for it, but I’ll try,” Utley said.

Utley kept his promise, as the beloved second baseman took an ad out of Monday’s Philadelphia Daily News to further express his thanks to city and fan base that cheered him on for 13 years.

In the ad, Utley acknowledges the people who had an impact on him during his tenure as a Phillie, including former head coach Charlie Manuel, and former teammates Ryan Howard, Cole HamelsCarlos Ruiz, Pat Burrell, and Aaron Rowand.

Utley also mentions the Pennsylvania SPCA, which he and his wife have worked with for the last 10 years to help prevent the abuse and neglect of animals in Philadelphia.

The ad ends with the phrase, “WFC forever.” Of course, we all know what that means.


PN Interview: 6th round draft pick LHP Tyler Gilbert

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, August 23, 2015 12:35 PM Comments: 11

t gilbert

Tyler Gilbert, image- Jay Floyd

After being drafted in the 6th round out of USC in this year’s MLB first year player draft, left-hander Tyler Gilbert has looked impressive for the Class A short-season Williamsport Crosscutters.  In nine outings (seven starts), the 21-year-old California native sports a 3-3 record with a 3.00 ERA while striking out 38 batters and walking just five in 36 innings pitched.

Recently, I spoke with Tyler about his draft experience, his transition to the pro ranks, which players he looks up to and much more.  Read ahead for the full interview.

-You’ve posted some solid number thus far in the minors.  What are your thoughts on your time with the Crosscutters thus far?

It’s been good the whole season.  I’ve been keeping my numbers relatively good and I’ve got a low ERA.  I had one shaky outing a few weeks ago and that was about it.  I think so far, five or six outings I’ve been relatively good.  So, I’ve been really happy with how everything is going.

-As an early-round draft selection, what was your draft experience like?

I had really no idea when I’d be drafted.  I heard various scouting reports and stuff and I actually didn’t see my name on the prospect lists for the top 200 picks.  So, I really had no clue what was going to happen until the Phillies called me in the sixth round and said, ‘Will you sign in the sixth for slot?’  And I said, ‘Of course!’  I mean, it was the second day of the draft and I was with my family, so it was a pretty exciting day.  It was awesome. Continue reading PN Interview: 6th round draft pick LHP Tyler Gilbert


The 100 Greatest Phillies of All Time Book Commercial!

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Fri, August 21, 2015 10:00 AM Comments: 3

Hot off the presses, and as seen on Comcast SportsNet and The Comcast Network, the 100 Greatest Phillies of All Time book commercial! Thank you to the fellas at 20/20 Visual Media for putting this together.

Don’t forget: The 100 Greatest Phillies of All Time will be released on September 15, 2015 and can be pre-ordered here! Thank you to everyone who has made this a success even prior to its release – because of your purchases, Amazon has identified the book as a “Hot New Release” and has lowered the price! If you have already pre-ordered, you are protected by Amazon’s pre-order guarantee. If you haven’t be sure to pre-order today to lock in the guarantee! Kindle version will be available on September 15 and for those who enjoy audio books, keep your ears peeled – an audio version is in the works!


PNTV Outtake: Potential 2017 Phillies Lineup

Posted by Jay Floyd, Thu, August 20, 2015 05:00 PM Comments: 8

On the heels of Chase Utley being traded to the Dodgers, the focus of the Phillies and their fans further focuses on the future.  And not the immediate future.  We’re talking years down the line.

In this Phillies Nation TV outtake, Rudy Mezzy and Jay Floyd discuss the possibilities of how the Phils’ lineup could pan out in 2017 with so much talent in the minors while keeping it real, knowing the team will use some of their depth to allow themselves to bolster the offense and spend salary.  The discussion ranges from names like Aaron Altherr and J.P. Crawford to a perennial MVP candidate.

The segment was filmed for an upcoming episode of PNTV, but will not be used, so here it is, in the media player below, as a web exclusive.


New Phils’ Financial Climate Allows For Greater Future Flexibility

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Thu, August 20, 2015 01:00 PM Comments: 9

Around the Twittersphere, there were some tweets floating about about the Phillies payroll now that Chase Utley has been traded. With high priced players like Cole Hamels, Jonathan Papelbon, and Utley traded, some Phillies fans are getting excited at the prospect of having a lower payroll and having some money to spend. I am here to tell you that yes, the Phillies will have a lower payroll and possibly money to spend on this free agent class but that no, it is not as much as you may think. Still, the team is in its most nimble financial state since 1999, a team that was able to leverage low-cost cost players into a contender in 2001 before working magic through the draft, making key trades, and signing free agents to help their ascent to a championship in 2008.

Although the math can get tricky and sometimes downright difficult, here’s a look at the Phillies financials for the remainder of 2015 and beyond.


Big contracts and commitments: Ryan Howard, Cliff Lee at $25 million each, Cole Hamels at $23.3 million ($14.3 million paid, $9 million kicked to Texas), Chase Utley at $15 million (~$4 million kicked to LA, LA assumes only $2 million buyout at end of season), Jonathan Papelbon at $12.8 million ($7.86 million paid, $5.14 million kicked to Washington, Washington picks up $196 K)

Medium contracts and commitments: Matt Harrison at $8.02 million (prorated following Hamels deal), Carlos Ruiz at $8 million, Aaron Harang at $5 million, Marlon Byrd salary money sent to Cincinnati was $4 million, Ben Revere at ~$2.61 million (~$2.61 million of $4.1 million contract paid prior to trade), Domonic Brown at $2.6 million, Jerome Williams at $2.5 million

Small contracts and commitments: Grady Sizemore at $2 million, Chad Billingsley at $1.5 million, Jimmy Rollins salary money sent to LA was $1 million, Jeff Francoeur at $950 K

With just the players who are not making the league minimum, the Phillies have about $139.45 million committed to 13 players in 2015, including the money headed to teams as part of deals. When dealt, Hamels had a guaranteed $76 million left and the Rangers are only on the hook for $40 million of that, meaning the Phillies are kicking in $36 million spread across four seasons, or $9 million per year. Instead of factoring this as one lump sum, I’m budgeting $36 million across four years. Similarly, the Nationals will only pay the prorated league minimum for Papelbon for the rest of the season, which is about $196 K from the time of the trade, so essentially the Phillies have no savings following the Papelbon trade, although they were able to get out from under his 2016 option, which is a plus. Continue reading New Phils’ Financial Climate Allows For Greater Future Flexibility


An ode to ‘The Man,’ Chase Utley

Posted by Tim Malcolm, Thu, August 20, 2015 09:41 AM Comments: 11

PHOTO: AP/Kathy Willens

PHOTO: AP/Kathy Willens

As a smallish kid in Port Richmond, I grew up idolizing infielders. I loved what little of Mike Schmidt I remember, and soon I was intently following guys like Ozzie Smith and Dickie Thon. Then Mickey Morandini came aboard. I began playing second base, shortstop, and third base for the Port Richmond Leprechauns and Port Richmond Tigers, and proudly wore No. 12. I was a small white kid. Guys like Morandini were small and white. That made sense to me. I could be him one day. That could work.

My favorite player during those years, however, wasn’t a Phillie, but Cal Ripken Jr. of the Orioles. I adored Ripken. He could hit, hit for power, run, field his position, and of course, he played every single game without rest. I cheered and cried on Sept. 6, 1995, the night Ripken broke Lou Gehrig’s consecutive-game streak. Retrospectively it’s odd – we cheered and honored a man because he came to work every day. He battled through injuries, had some luck, and played well enough to never need to take off. So he never took off. That was worth hours of celebration, a historic moment with balloons and streamers, a 25-minute game stoppage.

Ripken retired in 2001. Luckily the Phillies had a player a lot like Ripken – except for the perfect health – in Scott Rolen, and naturally I had grown to admire him. For maybe a year Rolen was unquestionably my favorite baseball player. Then he was traded. So for another small moment Bobby Abreu became my favorite player because I loved his level, fluid swing.

And then came Chase Utley, called up from Scranton in 2003 to ride the pine while Placido Polanco manned second base. He socked his first major league hit – a grand slam – and toiled in Phillies purgatory until he was officially named starter in 2005 after Polanco was traded to Detroit. And for 10 seasons, Utley remained the starting second baseman of the Philadelphia Phillies, until he was traded Wednesday night to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Chase Utley is, unquestionably, my favorite baseball player ever.

I met him once, on St. Patrick’s Day 2009 in Clearwater. We attended the Moyer Foundation’s St. Patrick’s Day barbecue outside Bright House Networks Field. Coming off the 2008 world championship, this provided the opportunity to tell every Phillie near and far how much I loved him. Like Chris Farley to Paul McCartney, I sidled up to Geoff Jenkins. Continue reading An ode to ‘The Man,’ Chase Utley


Eickhoff’s Contract Selected, Utley Trade Finalized, Sweeney Assumes Roster Spot

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Wed, August 19, 2015 11:46 PM Comments: 2

Eickhoff will start Friday

The Phillies announced two roster moves Wednesday night. First, the Phillies announced right-handed starter Jerad Eickhoff will join the Phillies Friday and start against the Miami Marlins. Eickhoff has a 2.49 ERA in 21.2 IP for the ‘Pigs and has thrown 19 strikeouts against three walks.

Additionally, the Chase Utley trade has been finalized with utility player Darnell Sweeney and pitcher John Richy headed to the Phils. Sweeney, 24, has spent time in the minor leagues primarily at shortstop and second base but has played more games in the outfield than infield for the Oklahoma City Dodgers. Sweeney was hitting .271/.332/.409 with 9 HR and 32 SB at Triple-A Oklahoma City and will report directly to the Phillies taking Utley’s place on the active roster. Richy, 23, was the Dodgers 2014 third round selection out of UNLV and has a 10-5 mark with a 4.20 ERA in 22 appearances, 18 starts for Rancho Cucamonga of the High-A California League.


OF Quinn will not return to Reading this season

Posted by Jay Floyd, Wed, August 19, 2015 05:46 PM Comments: 0

R Quinn

Roman Quinn, image- Jay Floyd

Reading outfielder Roman Quinn will not return to baseball this year for the regular season or the playoffs.

According to Phillies’ director of player development Joe Jordan, the 22-year-old switch hitter is progressing well after injuring his hip on June 12th and he could be available in time for Reading’s potential post-season run, but instead the organization prefers for Quinn to take things slowly, for his long term benefit.

Avoiding any rush to return, in an effort to help his team chase the Eastern League crown, the Phils’ brass prefers for him to prepare for winter ball later this year.

Prior to being sidelined with the injury, the Phillies’ 2nd round draft choice from 2011 was having a breakout season for Double-A Reading, posting a .306 average with four homers, 15 RBI and 29 steals. Continue reading OF Quinn will not return to Reading this season


Nation Notes: Blue Jays vs. Phillies

Posted by Matthew Gephart, Wed, August 19, 2015 05:09 PM Comments: 6

Toronto Blue Jays (66-54) at Philadelphia Phillies (46-73)


Starting Pitchers:
PHI: Adam Morgan, LHP (3-4, 4.11)
TOR: Mark Buehrle, LHP (13-5, 3.31)

Time: 7:05 EST, Citizens Bank Park
Weather: Cloudy, 88 degrees
Media: Twitter and Facebook

A Note for Today:

The news is swirling tonight around Chase Utley and his potential landing spot and reunion with Jimmy Rollins in LA.  Reports have noted that Utley will be dealt for two minor-leaguers and $2 million.  He was out taking pitches during BP tonight, but is not found on the lineup card to start the game.

Aaron Altherr will get his first start of the season since being called up in place of Maikel Franco, Altherr will start in left field for tonight’s game.  Altherr has split his time this year at Double and Triple-A, batting .293 with 127 hits and tallying 211 bases.  He also holds 32 doubles, 5 triples, and 14 home runs for the season this year.

Adam Morgan will get his turn to face what could arguably be the toughest lineup in the game.  Aaron Nola went for 5.0 innings last night, giving up only 4 hits and 3 earned runs, which included one solo home run to Josh Donaldson.

The Phillies bats will look to continue the success after picking up 9 hits and 5 runs off R.A. Dickey.  Jeff Francouer will get another look at the lefty on the mound to shield Ryan Howard from the powers that be lefties.

The force pitch will start at 7:05 EST, Star Wars theme tonight.


Hernandez 2B, Blanco 3B, Herrera CF, Francoeur RF,  Ruf 1B, Altherr LF, Galvis SS, Rupp C, Morgan LHP

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