This weekend is what makes baseball a great sport, not a good sport, a GREAT
sport. With something on the line for 6 teams going into the final day of the
regular season, it is without a doubt, tense and nervous for some, exciting and
fun for others.
Just when you thought those teams that are comfortable will just sit back and
watch, along comes Charlie Manuel….
…. to place credibility back into the last weekend of the season. Initially
yesterdays line-up may have appeared a little weak compared to the last time the
Phillies and Braves met, but the game became a fight to the end with the
Phillies rookie Vance Worley giving a commanding performance thru 5 innings and
then the Phillies bullpen blanking the Braves thru the final 4 innings to give
the Phillies a 7-0 shut out on the day the Braves honored Bobby Cox.
Today I believe the Phillies may have jumped past Michael Vick to become the
most hated entity in Atlanta. Some Braves fans feel since the Phillies are in
why they don’t lay down and let the Braves get to the post season, as Charlie
Manuel said, "How is that fair to the Padres and Giants", so suck it
up Atlanta and win because you can, not because the Phillies let you.
The Yankees had a double header, while the Rays tried to find a way to beat
the Royals. The Rays managed to shut the Royals out in a 4-0 win, while the
Yankees took game 1 from the BoSox and looked like they may even sweep the
double header, except it was AJ on the mound and sometimes his cry baby attitude
gets the better of him….
….AJ’s mind went like this: let me check to make sure the
umpire called that play correctly, cause we all know, if I argue he’ll change
his mind, oh and while I argue let me see if I can trick the BoSox into thinking
it’s a dead ball. DOH!
It seems the only guy he tricked was Berkman, who just stood
there and looked dumb. Now I would like to know when AJ entered the dug out and
went down the steps, what the hell did AJ say to Girardi, it almost looked as
though AJ was blaming Girardi, and Girardi had this look on his face as if to
say AJ your just fu-cking crazy.
So we have the AL East all tied up again, but today it will be
decided, the winner of the east will also get home field advantage, the Yankees
passed the advantage back to the Rays yesterday, because now the Yankees need a
win and a Rays loss to clinch, so do they stay in Boston to find out or do they
grab everything and rush back to New York to see if they can celebrate.
The NL is a little more screwed up, the scenarios are bountiful,
the bottom line is the right wins and loses and there could be baseball everyday
till the post season starts. So we know the Phillies have home field in the NL,
but who will they play, we don’t know, since we could have 4 teams with the same
record at the end of today.
The introduction of video replay on the possibility of a home
run ball was supposed to make things right, everyone keeps saying we need more
video replays, to many errors by the umpires. What if the video replay shows one
thing yet they still make the wrong call after seeing it….
….there you have it fan interference, wait they’re playing in
Ohio, okay that means it must be a home run ball then. If you didn’t see this
then it’s worth a look, no matter how many time I replay it I still see the fan
reach over the fence touch the ball with his glove at the same time he hits the
fielders glove. The ball could have been caught by the fielder, if it wasn’t
caught it appears it may have hit the top of the wall and come back into play.
So how then will video replay prevent the umpires from getting in wrong, okay
it’ll involve someone in New York who’ll review it, lot of good that did.
This the last day of regular season is probably one of the most
exciting final days since they went to divisional play. We will at least know
the outcome of the American League battles and who the AL East champions are, as
for the National League, this could be done today or it could take till the end
of Tuesday for us to know.
3 Days to post season play – GO PHILLIES….
The Phillies brief residence at Yankee stadium came to an end Thursday night.
It was clear when the Phillies entered Yankee stadium on Tuesday that the
Yankees were in the midst of a ‘anti-cold’ streak and the Phillies still
appeared to be enduring the ‘anti-hot’ period.
Some had heralded this inter-league match-up as a re-duel from the 2009 World
Series, even the front page of MLBlogs endeavored to blast us with images of the
Yankees and Phillies, while hoping to drive us to
blogs that could portray this
match-up as a spill over rivalry from last years post-season. The one thing it
did manage to do was show us that the Yankees enjoy a good comedy, they had
moved on from the normal images that would instill you with the need to label
them as the ‘Evil Empire’, moved on to more humorous aspects of being the
Empire’, it was Rick Moranis batting in the 8 hole for the Yankees. Joking
aside, in this time when appearance is normally more important than comfort or
sensibility, it’s good to see someone throw that out the window for safety,
especially someone in New York.
think to try and conceive some hidden rivalry between these two teams who have a
long way to go before either can even contemplate the possibility of a post season
where it would be a meaningful rivalry. This isn’t a rivalry some were trying to
create it to be, but more it seemed like mutual respect, we did see some firsts during these 3 games.
Lifetime first was game 2 with Jamie Moyer as the winning pitcher, this was a
first because no pitcher this age has beaten the Yankees before, but then as old
as Moyer is, each win is probably going to be a first for the teams that lose.
It was actually on this day 24 years ago that Moyer made his major league debut,
June 16th 1986, where he pitched for the Cubs against the
Phillies and got the win while Steve Carlton took the loss for the
Things weren’t what they seemed at Yankee stadium this week, Tuesday was
supposed to be a pitchers duel, but turned out to be one of Halladay’s worst
starts this year, Sabathia faired a little better for the Yankees, as he faced a
Phillies team that has struggled during the ‘anti-hot’ period. Even with the
lack of offense the Phillies still managed to get some hits, runs and put
Sabathia under some stress, but ultimately the Yankees took the game much to the
delight of the Yankee fans.
This 3 game series saw for the first time this year the return of the man who
hit the longest home run at the NEW Yankee stadium, last year a monster
homer was hit by the Phillies left fielder Raul Ibanez, another first this
year was seen during game 2 as the Phillies launched back to back home runs,
something they’ve lacked since September ’09.
Game 3 had Kendrick pitching for the Phillies
and Pettitte for the Yankees, after
the Yankees sneaked a win from Halladay,
I am sure most fans were surprised that Moyer was able to fend off the Yankee
bats and get a win in game 2, game 3 was one that Yankee
fans must have felt confident about, with probably the best Yankee
pitcher taking the mound and the Phillies
default pitcher because Happ is stuck on the DL, anyone that knows
baseball would have given this to the Yankees.
This is still a sporting event and not all things are as we expect them, this
year is a prime example of how normal is not really normal, so much to
the pleasure of the Phillie fans Kendrick
faced off against the Yankees for the very
first time in his short career and got the win.
put my hand up and admit even as a Phillie
fan I was almost sure Pettitte was going to win this one, with the way
the Phillies have been playing and the way
the Yankees have been playing, there were a
number of Yankee fans, even before the first
game, laying it out in the comments section of a number of online articles on
how the Yankees would easily sweep the Phillies,
this ramped up even more after they beat Halladay, with comments telling Phillie
fans they don’t have any other pitchers after Halladay and with the lack
of offense the Phillies may as well concede
and go home without the major embarrassment that the Yankee
hitters will give them. Then after game 2, Yankee
fans seemed confused that a 47 year old had had the audacity to actually
beat them, now after Kendrick held the Yankees
to 4 hits and 1 run there is probably a few Yankee
fans telling Joe how to best re-arrange his line-up so that the Yankees
When it comes right down to it, the Yankees
have an impressive 41 wins which ties them with the Rays,
okay maybe Yankee fans are used to being on
top, but we still have almost a 100 games left and as we have seen anything can
happen. Of those 41 wins 22 are against teams with a below .500 record and 19
are against teams with a better than .500 record, okay so that’s fairly even,
until you look at the 25 loses, only 8 to teams with a below .500 record, which
really means they are almost a .500 club against winning teams. I am sure you
can look at this with any club and see similar things, but when you consider
they can only play the Orioles so
many times and I think they have played them some 12 times already this year, or
it certainly seems like it, and they’ve played the Astros in
inter-league with the D’Backs still
to come, as long as they don’t drown in self pity and lose to the Mets
this weekend they should at least be able to stay on pace with the Rays,
until they have to play a long string of games against winning teams that is,
then who knows.
The Phillies host the Twins
this weekend, but then the Tribe come
to Philadelphia, at least we get 1 club that’s not a winning team
this month, not that it seems to make a difference to the Phillies,
at least during the ‘anti-hot’ run anyone and everyone has a 50/50 chance
Here’s hoping everyone has a wonderful weekend and just in case you’ve been traveling
around with your eyes closed or surfing the interwebs with blinkers on, Sunday
is Father’s Day, so don’t forget, unless your the dad, then it’s
customary to act surprised and still have to break out the grill and cook for
everyone that stops by….